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Academic skills (Archaeology)



This lecture series teaches general basic skills for conducting academic research: how do you start your research and where do you find the right literature? And how do you subsequently write a well-founded thesis in academic English?

The course consists of a series of tutorials, preceded by a short instruction session, and followed by exercises which are to be elaborated on during class, and to be provided with feedback afterwards.

The course will start with short exercises in study planning and study techniques.
You will do these exercises under the guidance of the study advisor. Subsequently, in block 1, a short literature survey will be set up, in which all the necessary steps in the process will be explained. Referencing, paraphrasing and academic fraud will be subjects of the course as well.
General instructions will be given by the course coordinator, feedback on the content of the assignments will be provided by your mentor. During the tutorials you will practice peer reviewing, and handling discussions about the assignments.

Starting mid-October, you will start practicing the critically reading and writing of short academic texts in English. These tutorials will be supervised by lecturers from the Academic Language Centre.
The course is completed with a presentation and essay (in English) relating to a small literature survey.
The book The Human Past will be used in the tutorials.

Course objectives

  • Ability to formulate a research question and work plan;

  • Ability to independently search for and assess academic literature, in order to be able to answer the research question;

  • Ability to write papers in academic English, based on literature research;

  • Knowledge of the most common review symbols;

  • Ability to critically review an essay by a fellow student;

  • Ability to discuss main elements on a basic level;

  • Ability to present one’s academic research;

  • Knowledge of the faculty’s technical guidelines regarding the form of essays/theses and the ability to apply them;

  • Knowledge about academic fraud.


Course schedule details can be found in the propedeuse/first year time schedule.

Mode of instruction


Course load

The course load will be distributed as follows:

  • 20 × 2 hours of tutorial (2,5 ects);

  • Assignments, including presentation (1 ects);

  • Paper of 2,500 words (1,5 ects).

Assessment method

The assessment grade comprises the average of the following components:

  • Assignments (including discussion about them during tutorials);

  • Presentation;

  • Essay.
    The essay must also be satisfactory and comply with faculty guidelines.

All exam dates (exams, retakes, paper deadlines etc.) can be found in the examination schedule.

Reading list

To be determined during class, depends on type of research.


Registration for the course is not necessary, registration for the exam is mandatory. For instructions, see the Registration in uSis page.


For more information about this course, please contact mw. dr. J.A. Mol.


  • Compulsory attendance.

  • This course has two versions: one taught in Dutch, the other taught in English.