Archaeology BSc/MA/MA(SocSci)

Public Archaeology ARCH4062

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Humanities
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 4 (SCQF level 10)
  • Typically Offered: Either Semester 1 or Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

This course examines the relationship between archaeology as an academic discipline and the broader public and private spheres, covering themes such as legislation, public policy, education, the heritage industry, local and community identity, and related issues, as well as the economic, social and cultural contribution of archaeology to the modern world.


1x1hr lecture; 1x1hr seminar per week over 10 weeks as scheduled on MyCampus.

This is one of the Honours options in Archaeology and may not run every year. The options that are running this session are available on MyCampus.

Excluded Courses





Examination (90 minutes duration) - 50%

Essay (3,000 words) - 40%

Project (Display Board) - 10%

Main Assessment In: April/May

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? Not applicable

Reassessments are normally available for all courses, except those which contribute to the Honours classification. For non-Honours courses, students are offered reassessment in all or any of the components of assessment if the satisfactory (threshold) grade for the overall course is not achieved at the first attempt. This is normally grade D3 for undergraduate students and grade C3 for postgraduate students. Exceptionally it may not be possible to offer reassessment of some coursework items, in which case the mark achieved at the first attempt will be counted towards the final course grade. Any such exceptions for this course are described below. 

Course Aims

This course will provide the opportunity to:

■ critically engage with the theory and practice of Public Archaeology, including key debates in the field

■ develop an understanding of the range and variety of public archaeological practice in contemporary Scotland, using general studies and specific examples.

■ consider community archaeology in the broader framework of public archaeology

■ place the Scottish experience in a broader British, European and / or international context

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

■ engage critically with some of the major theoretical and practical issues underlying the practice of public archaeology today

■ appraise differing approaches to key aspects of this subject, nationally and/or internationally

■ evaluate critically the role of archaeology in the public sphere from a number of perspectives

■ relate general themes in public archaeology to specific projects and case studies in Scotland and elsewhere, including examples from community archaeology

■ marshall wide-ranging approaches, ideas and evidence into coherent and effective arguments in written work.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.