Practical Classes in the Research Laboratory for Archaeology and the History of Art (RLAHA)

Chronometric Dating - students visit the laboratories and instruments used in radiocarbon and Luminescence dating.

Diet and Bioarchaeology - explore the practical aspects of studying past diets through isotopic measurements. Students will be able to analyse their own diet by examining strands of their hair.

Environmental Archaeology - an introduction to soils, sediments, preservation of biological remains and interpretation of the evidence. Students will have the opportunity to handle specimens and sort samples for biological remains.

Materials and Technology - an introduction to the main approaches to analysing archaeological materials including hands-on practice of microscopic and chemical techniques to identify specific materials. 

Object Handling Classes in Local Museums

Artefact analysis

Three artefact handling classes will be held in the Ashmolean Museum in the second year of study of the Final Honour School. They are intended to underpin students’ understanding of the material culture of select key areas covered by the syllabus. They focus on objects from the Ancient Near East, the Aegean Bronze Age and Medieval Europe. 

Animal Bones

This practical introduces students to the types of archaeological information that can be gleaned through the study of animal bones and to the basic principles of animal bone identification. Handling of animal bones is an important component of the course. The aim of the class is to help students make connections between the animal bones and other aspects of their archaeological course, and to provide an introduction to the field of zooarchaeology, its relevance and potential, should they wish to pursue it further.

Human Bones for Archaeologists

This class provides the opportunity to explore and consider the great plasticity found within and between modern human population groups.  This pracitcal class allows a fully ecological approach to understanding the variation and similarities found between different hominins as well as members of the same species.