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Durham University

Postgraduate Module Handbook 2021/2022

Archive Module Description

This page is for the academic year 2021-22. The current handbook year is 2022-23

Department: Archaeology


Type Open Level 4 Credits 60 Availability Available in 2021/22
Tied to F4KD09 Human Bioarchaeology and Palaeopathology



  • None.

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • None.


  • To ensure that students have the opportunity to engage in research, practising, developing and demonstrating research skills in a particular facet of the subject.


  • Under guidance of the assigned dissertation supervisor, students will cover the following:
  • familiarisation with published literature on a specific topic
  • development of a research design
  • data collection; evaluation and drawing of conclusions. Data may derive from fieldwork, library or laboratory
  • writing and presenting a dissertation of up to 15,000 words in a manner and format appropriate to the subject area.

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • Students will show in-depth knowledge of bioarchaeological theory and methodology in their specialist topic, demonstrating critical awareness and understanding of their research in the wider setting of bioarchaeology.
Subject-specific Skills:
  • Students will demonstrate familiarity +with published literature relevant to the subject, be able to gather data and critically evaluate findings.
Key Skills:
  • The ability to collect and analyse relevant bioarchaeological materials and/or data, draw relevant conclusions and to present these in an appropriate form.

Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

  • The planning of research and dissertation outline is discussed in a lecture as part of ARCH40130. Students will present their dissertation design in class and will receive feedback. Subsequently, tutorials on a one-to-one basis will give further guidance.

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Tutorials 10 over vacation 1 hour 10
Preparation & Reading 588
Oral Presentation 1 1st week of term 2 hours 2
Total 600

Summative Assessment

Component: Dissertation Component Weighting: 100%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
dissertation 15,000 words 100%

Formative Assessment:

Research design 1,500 words - feedback will be given.

Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University