Archaeology BSc/MA/MA(SocSci)

Virtual Pasts (3D Computer Graphics and VR for Archaeology and Museums) UG ARCH4079

  • 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

The course will provide a practical and theoretical introduction to the use of 3D computer graphics and virtual reality (VR) within an archaeological and museums setting. Over 10 weeks students will be introduced to the skills needed to design, build and disseminate virtual experiences. They will also be guided through some of the theoretical ideas which underpin and provide a critical framework for virtual archaeology.


1 x 2 hour session per week.


This will consist of 1 hour of lecture and an additional hour of either lecture or practical lab depending on the weekly topic.

Excluded Courses





Project Proposal (25% - 750 words)


Progress Reports (45% 3 x 600 words)


Report (30% 1500 words)

Main Assessment In: April/May

Course Aims

This course aims to:


■ Provide students with an introduction to 3D Computer Graphics as they are employed within archaeology and the heritage industry.

■ Develop critical and creative skills necessary to design and deliver a project using 3D computer graphics and virtual reality.

■ Provide opportunities to develop technical skills sufficient to complete a simple 3D computer graphics project.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

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


• Design 3D computer graphics projects for specific research/exhibition settings.

• Create 3D models of archaeological sites and/or objects from scratch.

• Produce outputs (still images, animations and VR scenes) from their 3D models.

•Use theoretical literature relating to the archaeological use of 3D computer graphics within archaeology and museums to critically engage with their own practical 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.