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Landscape archaeology


Admission requirements

At least 2 out of 3 courses of the BA2-profile Archaeology of Europe (Early prehistory / Late prehistory and provincial-Roman archaeology / Medieval archaeology) obtained.
Recommended: BA2 course Quaternary geology.


Our contemporary landscapes have a deep history and contain human traces of many periods. Besides, the behaviour of people in the landscape seems spatially continuous. This raises questions such as: what is the meaning of a dot on an archaeological distribution map? What is a ‘site’ en what exactly means the term 'landscape' at that time? And an important methodological question: how do you research a landscape?

The main goal of this course is to learn how to gain knowledge of landscapes through archaeological research. You are required to design and present a research proposal for a (simplified) practical situation, for which an original and unconventional appraoch is being encouraged.
Which choices do you need to make (and which not) and from which view on an archaeological landscape? And how are you going to 'translate' your results to 'the public' who finances your research?

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 scientific results to ‘the public’;

  • Ability to present one's results in front of the class;

  • Ability to formulate arguments orally, and in writing;

  • Ability to work in a team.


Course schedule details can be found in the BA3 time schedule.

Mode of instruction

(Interactive) lectures.

Course load

The course load will be distributed as follows:

  • 10 hours of formal lectures;

  • 18 hours of interactive lectures;

  • 200 pages of literature;

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

Assessment method

  • Group presentation (1/3);

  • Paper (1/3);

  • Exam (1/3).

A retake is only possible for the exam and paper, only if the presentation is graded with a 5,0 or higher, and if all other requirements are met.

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

The assessment deadlines for exams and retakes can be found in the BA3 examination schedule.


The overall literature and literature for the different assignments are announced during the introduction lecture.


Registration for the course or the exam is not required.


For more information about this course, please contact drs. R. Jansen.


Compulsory attendance.