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Field Techniques


Admission requirements



This course forms the start of the learning trajectory 'professional skills'. This learning line runs through all years of study and consists of Field Techniques (BA1), Field School 1 (BA1), Internship BA2, Internship BA3 and an optional Master Internship Archaeology.
All skills acquired are registered in a portfolio.

Field Techniques is an introduction into the methods and techniques employed in archaeological field research. The course consists of a series of lectures and practicals on archaeological field techniques.
The series of lectures forms the theoretical basis of the course and is completed with a written exam.
Lectures will be taught in both English and Dutch. During the practical you will already practice various field recording techniques.

The Field Techniques course is followed by Field School 1, where all of the acquired skills are brought into practice in a real archaeological environment. The Field Techniques course helps you to gain basic knowledge and skills in archaeological field techniques.

At the end of the course, you should have (practical) knowledge of how the archaeological record is formed and how we can begin to recover it (prospecting methods, excavation techniques and various archaeological field recording techniques).

Course set-up

  • 7 lectures of 2 hours;

  • Practical: 7 half-day increments of 4 hours.

Course objectives

  • Knowledge of how the archaeological record is formed, and how it is affected by taphonomy;

  • Knowledge of the different types of archaeological data;

  • Knowledge of the way in which these archaeological data are collected and how they can be analysed;

  • Knowledge of the various excavation techniques and how they are applied in archaeology;

  • Ability to select and apply the applicable field recording techniques;

  • 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

  • Lectures;

  • Practicals.

Assessment method

  • Written exam (100%);

  • Compulsory attendance for the practical.

For the practicals a pass is required (indicated as DLN in the grades list). A retake for the practicals is not possible.

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.

Reading list

  • Renfrew, C & Bahn, P. 2020. Archaeology, Methods, Theory and Practice. 8th Edition ISBN 978-0500294246;

  • Several articles, to be announced during the course.


The Administration Office will register all Archaeology BA1 students in uSis for their lectures, tutorials and exams in semester 1 and semester 2.

However for exams, confirmation through MyStudymap is mandatory.
No confirmation = no participation!

If you are not a BA1 student, but want to take this course, please contact the Administration Office.

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

Exchange and Study Abroad students, please see the Prospective students website for information on how to apply.

All information (costs, registration, entry requirements, etc.) for those who are interested in taking this course as a Contractstudent is on the Contractonderwijs Archeologie webpage (in Dutch).


For more information about this course, please contact A.J. (Arjan) Louwen.


Compulsory attendance for the practicals.