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Landscape Archaeology Projects


Admission requirements

Landscape Dynamics 1 and Landscape Dynamics 2 obtained.


Our contemporary landscapes have a deep history indicated by visible and non-visible relics of human activities. The understanding of past landscapes in archaeology is a challenge, both from a theoretical and a methodological perspective.
What exactly does the term 'landscape' mean throughout history? How do we go about archaeological exploring landscapes? And how do we show the value of historical landscapes to a larger audience?

The main goal of this course is to learn how to gain knowledge of landscapes through archaeological research, by integrating theoretical exploration and practical implementation. You design a research proposal for a (simplified) practical situation of a landscape archaeology project.

A series of formal (theoretical) lectures about various kinds of research projects of landscapes from different periods and/or regions will introduce you to various methods and strategies to research a landscape.
Practical issues are discussed, such as: what is a ‘site’? Why is this research meaningful? And can landscape archaeology contribute to present discussions about the management and planning of our contemporary landscapes in general?

Through this course you gain insight in landscape archaeology and learn how to write a research proposal. This includes everything from the layman’s abstract to a budget and, importantly, the relevance of your research and how to communicate your results to 'the public' that finances your research. You are also expected to present this research plan in a short, engaging presentation.

Course set-up

  • In the mornings formal lectures will be given about a certain topic, a region or theme related to landscape archaeology;

  • In the afternoons you will work step-by-step on a research design for your own landscape project, supervised by a region specialist. With your team you tackle tasks such as organising and structuring your project, and designing a step-by-step research plan;

  • Research proposals are presented and discussed in class;

  • At the end of the course your team hands in a completed written proposal.

Course objectives

  • Knowledge of the main aspects and definitions in landscape archaeology;

  • Knowledge and applicability of the fundamental (theoretical) approaches within landscape archaeology;

  • Learning to design a research proposal for a chosen research area (a landscape) including a fieldwork strategy based on one's own research goal and questions, and within a limited budget;

  • Ability to translate and communicate scientific results to ‘the public’;

  • Ability to convincingly pitch a research plan to a critical audience;

  • Ability to formulate arguments orally and in writing;

  • Ability to work in a team.


Course schedule details can be found in MyTimetable.
Log in with your ULCN account, and add this course using the 'Add timetable' button.

Mode of instruction

  • Formal and interactive lectures;

  • Practical sessions with assignments and autonomous study.

Course load

  • 20 hours of formal lectures (1 ec);

  • 28 hours of interactive practical and autonomous study (2 ec);

  • 180 pages of literature (1 ec);

  • Group assignment including presentation and paper (max. 1,800 words) (1 ec).

Assessment method

  • Group presentation (25%);

  • Research proposal/paper (75%).

The retake of the paper consists of rewriting the paper for which a maximum grade of 6,0 will be given.

Assessment deadlines

All assessment deadlines (exams, retakes, paper deadlines etc.) can be found in MyTimetable.
Log in with your ULCN account, and add this course using the 'Add timetable' button. To view the assessment deadline(s), make sure to select the course with a code ending in T and/or R.

Deadlines for assignments are included in the course syllabus.
Presentations will be scheduled during the last weeks of the course and are dependent on the number of groups.

Reading list

Literature differs per project. Students can choose projects in various regions (e.g. the Netherlands, the Mediterranean or the Americas). The projects differ each year.


Registration in uSis is mandatory. You can register for this course until 5 days before the first class.

Registration in uSis automatically leads to enrollment in the corresponding Brightspace module. Therefore you do not need to enroll in Brightspace, but make sure to register for this course in uSis.

You are required to register for all lectures and tutorials well in time. The Administration Office registers all students for their exams, you are not required to do this in uSis.


For more information about this course, please contact dr. R. (Richard) Jansen or dr. M.S. (Maaike) de Waal.


  • Compulsory attendance;

  • In case of absence your team decides whether a full grade is taken off from the absentee, or half a grade from the entire team.