ARCY3008 Archaeological Method and Theory

6 points
Not available in 2018UWA (Perth)Face to face
Details for undergraduate courses
  • Level 3 elective
This unit examines the historical development of theories about culture and culture change, and the methods these theories have employed in order to infer past human behaviour. The unit aims to develop students' ability to think through complex archaeological problems involving several lines of evidence and to understand the theories developed to deal with diverse archaeological materials. Students are expected to achieve a broad understanding of the theoretical frameworks presented in the unit and their relationship to ideas about culture. The particular frameworks discussed are Antiquarian, Culture-Historical, Processual, Post-Processual and Indigenous. Case studies are drawn from across the world, with Australia as a particular focus.
Students are able to (1) achieve a broad understanding of the theoretical frameworks presented in the unit and their relationship to ideas about culture and cultural change; (2) understand the major schools of theory influencing archaeological thought; including: Ancient and Antiquarian, Culture Historical, Processual and Post-Processual, and Indigenous; (3) develop the skills required to link theory to specific archaeological case studies, using appropriate methods; (4) demonstrate a critical and reflexive understanding of ethical issues relevant to all archaeological practice; (5) independently and critically undertake research through the collection and interpretation of archaeological information and report on this process; (6) demonstrate presentation skills by preparing a tutorial presentation and concomitant group communication skills in discussing the presentation; and (7) demonstrate critical reading skills and source criticism.
Typically this unit is assessed in the following ways: (1) test; (2) tutorial assignments; and (3) essay. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Supplementary assessment is not available in this unit except in the case of a bachelor's pass degree student who has obtained a mark of 45 to 49 overall and is currently enrolled in this unit, and it is the only remaining unit that the student must pass in order to complete their course.
Unit Coordinator(s)
Dr Sven Ouzman
Unit rules
ARCY1001 Discoveries in Archaeology, ARCY1002 Archaeology Today: Principles and Themes, and two Level 2 units in Archaeology
Contact hours
2 hours per week
  • The availability of units in Semester 1, 2, etc. was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change.
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  • Books and other material wherever listed may be subject to change. Book lists relating to 'Preliminary reading', 'Recommended reading' and 'Textbooks' are, in most cases, available at the University Co-operative Bookshop (from early January) and appropriate administrative offices for students to consult. Where texts are listed in the unit description above, an asterisk (*) indicates that the book is available in paperback.