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Research Seminar: Communicating Communities


Admission requirements


This research master seminar is connected to ongoing research by researchers focusing on the circum-Caribbean at the Faculty of Archaeology, Leiden University, and beyond, in close collaboration with the CaribTRAILS project. Research is focused on:

  • Cultural encounters (e.g., transformation of indigenous Caribbean society and culture before and after first contact;

  • Decolonising approach to archaeological (academic) research;

  • Archaeological networks, human mobility and the exchange of goods and ideas;

  • Caribbean heritage and critical museology;

  • Social adaptations to climate change challenges.

All imply a profound interest in cultural encounters and an interdisciplinary analysis of archaeological, bioarchaeological, ethnohistorical, ethnographic, and anthropological data.

RMA students, PhD candidates and postdoctoral researchers will work together discussing theoretical and methodological aspects of their thesis.

Course set-up

Weekly 2-hour seminar with Caribbean Research Group and associated researchers abroad. This course covers blocks 1 through 4.

Course objectives

  • Knowledge of and insight in setting up, structuring and executing an academic research projects, on the basis of detailed knowledge of the relevant period, region, research problems, recent literature and current issues under consideration;

  • Insight in how high-ranking international research is conducted;

  • Critical assessment of current research and publications with respect to applicability and background;

  • Ability to express one’s well-argumented opinion on these topics in discussion;

  • Ability to design and conduct research and generate new knowledge;

  • Insight in the applicability of theoretical concepts and models on archaeological, historical and anthropological data;

  • Oral presentation of research;

  • Development of well-argumented texts on research;

  • Critical review of one‘s own research and that of fellow students in a constructive manner.


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

Interactive seminar with student’s reports, commenting on the structure of research and thesis, with analytic discussion of recent publications.
In addition, students attend the guest lectures (to be announced during the year), as well as an international symposium, workshop or congress, to be selected in consultation with their thesis supervisor.

Assessment method

  • Active participation in the seminar (25%);

  • Research proposal (25%);

  • Written and oral assignments, including analytical presentation of recent literature related to the topic of the thesis and creative assignment for Virtual Caribbean Ties relating to own research (25%);

  • Joint journal article (25%).

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.

Assignments and papers should be handed in before the end of the examination week following the course block.

Reading list

Partly indicated during the seminar, partly to be identified by the students themselves.


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 prof. dr. C.L. (Corinne) Hofman.


Compulsory attendance.