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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 relicts 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. Students design a research proposal for a (simplified) practical situation of a landscape archaeology project.

A series of formal theoretical and methodical 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 an engaging presentation.

Course set-up

  • Each (two) week(s) one subject of the research proposal is addressed ((1) introduction, (2) goals and questions, (3) methodology and (4) societal embedding and budget). Each topic is introduced by one or two formal lecture(s).

  • During the weekly guided tutorials you will work in small groups on your research proposal for your own landscape project, supervised by a region specialist. With your team you tackle tasks such as how to organise and structure your project, and how to design a step-by-step research plan.

  • At the end of the course research proposals are presented and discussed in class.

Course objectives

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

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

  • Learn 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 lectures;

  • Guided tutorials working on group-assignments;

  • Autonomous study.

Assessment method

  • The average of grades given to the research proposal (75%);

  • Group presentation (25%).

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.

There are weekly deadlines for assignments during the course.
Pitches must be presented in the last week of the course.

Reading list

Literature differs per project. Students can choose projects from 2 various regions (e.g. the Netherlands or the Americas). The projects can differ each year.


Enrolment through MyStudymap is mandatory.

General information about registration can be found on the Course and Exam Enrolment page.


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


Compulsory attendance.