Studying online

There are now 2 possible online modes for units:

Units with modes Online timetabled and Online flexible are available for any student to self-enrol and study online.

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Unit Overview


This unit takes an historical approach to the archaeological contribution to our understanding of the history of human occupation of Australia before Europeans arrived. It traces the history of occupation of Australia using some of the major archaeological questions that have influenced our ideas about the Indigenous occupation of Australia in pre-European times. The emphasis in the unit is on examining the archaeological evidence—what it consists of, how it was obtained and how it has been used in constructing arguments.

6 points
Details for undergraduate courses
  • Level 3 elective

Students are able to (1) have a general knowledge of the archaeological contribution to the history of human occupation of Australia before the arrival of Europeans; (2) have detailed knowledge of the major themes discussed in the unit and how the archaeological evidence has been used to construct arguments; (3) know how and why archaeological interpretations about the Indigenous occupation of Australia have changed over time; (4) critically analyse and apply competing theories of the interpretation of archaeological evidence in relation to the Indigenous occupation of Australia; (5) critically evaluate archaeological principles and methods, and apply them to archaeological questions relating to the Indigenous occupation of Australia; (6) demonstrate a critical and reflective understanding of ethical issues relevant to the Indigenous occupation of Australia; (7) demonstrate a critical judgement of archaeological practices and research traditions; (8) independently and critically undertake research through the collection and interpretation of archaeological information and report on this process both orally and through written expression; and (9) demonstrate critical reading skills and source criticism.


Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) test; (2) essay; and (3) quizzes. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Student may be offered supplementary assessment in this unit if they meet the eligibility criteria.

Unit Coordinator(s)
Dr Sven Ouzman
Unit rules
ARCY1001 Discoveries in Archaeology
and ARCY1002 Archaeology Today: Principles and Themes and at least one Level 2 Archaeology unit (except ARCY2005 Rock Art Field Unit)
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.
  • All students are responsible for identifying when they need assistance to improve their academic learning, research, English language and numeracy skills; seeking out the services and resources available to help them; and applying what they learn. Students are encouraged to register for free online support through GETSmart; to help themselves to the extensive range of resources on UWA's STUDYSmarter website; and to participate in WRITESmart and (ma+hs)Smart drop-ins and workshops.
  • Unit readings, including any essential textbooks, are listed in the unit outline for each unit, one week prior the commencement of study. The unit outline will be available via the LMS and the UWA Handbook one week prior the commencement of study. Reading lists and essential textbooks are subject to change each semester. Information on essential textbooks will also be made available on the Essential Textbooks. This website is updated regularly in the lead up to semester so content may change. It is recommended that students purchase essential textbooks for convenience due to the frequency with which they will be required during the unit. A limited number of textbooks will be made available from the Library in print and will also be made available online wherever possible. Essential textbooks can be purchased from the commercial vendors to secure the best deal. The Student Guild can provide assistance on where to purchase books if required. Books can be purchased second hand at the Guild Secondhand bookshop (second floor, Guild Village), which is located on campus.
  • Contact hours provide an indication of the type and extent of in-class activities this unit may contain. The total amount of student work (including contact hours, assessment time, and self-study) will approximate 150 hours per 6 credit points.