Archaeological and Forensic Science Practicals (ARC1007)

StaffDr Laura Evis - Lecturer
Credit Value15
ECTS Value7.50
NQF Level4
Duration of Module Term 1: 11 weeks;

Module aims

To introduce students to key scientific approaches that are of common value to both archaeological and forensic sciences and provide students with basic practical skills in relevant techniques. Students will be introduced to techniques for locating buried evidence, extracting and sampling evidence from soils, and high and low power microscopy.

ILO: Module-specific skills

  • 1. Know and understand the basic principles behind locating buried evidence through geophysics and other techniques
  • 2. Know and understand the basic principles of extracting macro and microscopic evidence from soils, and relevant sampling procedures
  • 3. Know and understand the basic principles of microscopy
  • 4. Demonstrate basic practical skills in geophysics, laboratory soil extraction techniques and use of high and low power optical microscopes.

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

  • 5. Demonstrate basic laboratory and field skills
  • 6. Work safely in the field and laboratory
  • 7. Have a competent overview of the use and acquisition of data
  • 8. Interpret a variety of information forms and assimilate/manage numerical and graphical data
  • 9. Deploy data from technical reports

ILO: Personal and key skills

  • 10. acquire a range of observational and analytical skills which are applicable in the wider world
  • 11. contribute to group discussions and ask pertinent questions
  • 12. co-operate with and learn from peers in a practical context

Syllabus plan

  • Introduction to module; overview lecture on archaeological and forensic sciences

  • Lecture on locating buried sites; geophysics

  • Geophysical practical 1

  • Geophysical practical 2

  • Geophysical processing

  • Lecture on extracting evidence from soil and sampling

  • Laboratory extraction practical 1

  • Laboratory extraction practical 2

  • Lecture on methods of microscopy

  • Microscopy practical 1

  • Microscopy practical 2

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled learning and teaching activities105 x 2 hour lectures
Scheduled learning and teaching activities18Practical work (6x3hrs)
Guided independent study122Guided independent study, including reading, research and preparation for classes, practical work and assignments

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Practical Portfolio1001500 words1-12mark and written comments

Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
Practical portfolioPractical portfolio1500 words1-12Referral/deferral period

Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

Brothwell, D.R. and Pollard, A.M. (eds) 2001 Handbook of Archaeological Sciences. Chichester: Wiley. Hunter, J. and Cox, M, 2005 Forensic Archaeology: advances in theory and practice. London: Routledge. Hunter, J., Roberts, C. and Martin, A. 1996 Studies in Crime: An Introduction to Forensic Archaeology. London: Batsford.

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Key words search

Forensic, Archaeology, Methodology