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Archaeology Field Methods

SOC 233W

Archaeology Field Methods

SOC 233W

Course Description

Provides a guided field experience in the basic techniques of land site analysis. Introduces commonly used methods of surveying and mapping; excavation; dating; artifact and ecofact identification and conservation; data recording, including photography and scaled drawing; and site interpretation. Examines criteria for selecting techniques appropriate to specific site conditions. Emphasizes the Michigan prehistoric and historic context. (30-0)

Outcomes and Objectives

Have a basic understanding of archaeological theory.

Objectives:

  • Define and distinguish anthropological anthropology as a unique discipline separate from other disciplines.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the history of anthropological archaeology theory, i.e. antiquity, cultural history.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of modern advancements in archaeological theory, i.e. processualism, post-processualism.

Have a basic understanding of archaeological field methods.

Objectives:

  • Apply the scientific method to the study of past human cultures.
  • Understand archaeological reconnaissance, survey, and site identification, i.e. walk-over, shovel testing.
  • Understand site assessment, i.e. stratigraphic analysis, deep testing, test units, trenching, provenience, superposition, and strata identified by their contents.
  • Understand site mitigation, i.e. removal of artifacts from matrix using site assessment procedures for the purpose of historical preservation.
  • Understand lab analysis, i.e. seriation, relative dating, and absolute dating.

Use writing tasks to promote learning.

Objectives:

  • Practice critical writing skills within the subject.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of subject matter.