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Archaeology is an exciting discipline, in which you combine very different skills and fields of knowledge.
You venture out into the world to discover, study and interpret traces of past societies in the landscape, but you also work with both your head and hands in the classroom, in the laboratory, and at your desk, applying academic theories and analysing archaeological materials.

You often have to interpret scanty information, and fill in the gaps by thinking like an anthropologist, even if you are reconstructing life in societies we can no longer see. Where possible, you use historical sources, like a historian, but you also explore whether you can use high-tech methods from the natural sciences. Archaeology can therefore always be found at the interfaces between history and the social and natural sciences.
The field of archaeology itself encompasses the deep and even deepest history of humans, human societies and our intervention in nature.

As an archaeologist you also collect a large amount of valuable information that can shine new light on the big issues society faces today. You study early examples of globalisation and mass migration, following them over the centuries.
You study examples of growing social inequality and its effects on different groups in society. You deliberate over when humans first began to affect nature significantly and the long-term consequences of this, even for the population of today's world.
You study how different societies and cultures view their cultural and natural heritage, and how important this heritage can be to their identities.

This is what makes Archaeology the programme for people of all ages who wish to combine a particular fascination with the past with a broad general interest.

BA year 1

The first year World Archaeology consists of mostly introductory subjects and lectures on the basic knowledge and general skills that every archaeologist needs.
You will learn about the development of archaeology as a science and you will discover precisely what the most important archaeological concepts mean. Also, you will get to know the research areas offered in Leiden archaeology.
Fieldwork is part of the programme as well. This is when you will learn what an excavation really involves, and you will put what you learn into practice.
You will also learn more about heritage and archaeological policies, and how to translate the data and finds from excavations to appeal to a wider audience.

Vak EC Semester 1 Semester 2
Material Studies 5
Introduction to Heritage Studies 10
Past and Future 5
Landscape Dynamics 10
World Archaeology 1: Prehistory of the Near East and Europe 5
World Archaeology 2: Americas and the Classical World 5
World Archaeology 3: Human Origins and Historical Archaeology 5
Field Techniques 10
Field School 1 5

BA year 2

Bachelor year 2 consists of the following components:

A) Compulsory courses (45 ec).

B) Seminars (15 ec).
Choose one seminar from each series.

Vak EC Semester 1 Semester 2

A) Compulsory courses

Deep History 5
Complex Societies 5
Imperial Powers, Global Cultures 5
Geographic Information Systems (GIS) 5
Bioarchaeology 5
Material Culture 5
Landscape Archaeology Projects 5
Field school 2 10

B) Choose 1 seminar from each series:

Series 1: October - December

Amerindian Shamanism in the Caribbean and Amazonia (BA2) 5
Dutch Prehistory in a European Context 5
Medieval Lowlands 5
Ritual and Religion in the Ancient Near East (BA2) 5
The Archaeology of the Ancient Silk Roads (BA2) 5

Series 2: February - April

Archaeology of the Mediterranean (BA2) 5
Byzantine Archaeology (BA2) 5
Palaeolithic Archaeology 5
The Maya Peoples: An Ancient Civilisation, Its Present and Future (BA2) 5
The Prehistory of Anatolia and Cyprus 5
The Roman Frontier 5

Series 3: April - May

Experimental Archaeology 5
Heritage and Environment 5
Osteology (BA2) 5
Botany (BA2) 5
Zoology (BA2) 5

BA year 3

Bachelor year 3 consists of the following components:

A) Compulsory courses (30 ec)

B) An Archaeology specialisation, consisting of three courses (15 ec), see the list below.

C) For the remaining 15 ec, choose either of these options:
* a second Archaeology specialisation, see the list below
* half a minor (Dutch or English)

Vak EC Semester 1 Semester 2

A) Compulsory courses

Archaeological Theory (BA3) 5
Predictive Modelling 5
Internship BA3 10
Thesis BA3 10

B1) Specialisation Archaeology of Europe

Material Studies in Dutch Archaeology 5
Project Groups European Archaeology 5
Landscape Archaeology 5

B2) Specialisation Archaeology and Heritage of Indigenous America

Archaeology of the Andes 5
Amerindian Shamanism in the Caribbean and Amazonia (BA3) 5
The Maya Peoples: An Ancient Civilisation, Its Present and Future (BA3) 5

B3) Specialisation Archaeology of the Classical World

Archaeological Projects in the Mediterranean 5
The Archaeology of the Ancient Silk Roads (BA3) 5
Archaeology of the Mediterranean (BA3) 5

B4) Specialisation Archaeology of the Near East

Archaeology of Arabia 5
Ritual and Religion in the Ancient Near East (BA3) 5
Byzantine Archaeology (BA3) 5

B5) Specialisation Bioarchaeology

Botany / Zoology / Osteoarchaeology 10
Ancient Foodways 5