Alfie chose to study BA Archaeology and Anthropology due to the array of flexible modules available, which coincided with his interest for the Palaeolithic period and his ambition to travel and discover diverse cultures.
Pursuing a personal pathway
Archaeology and anthropology students can tailor their degree to their personal interests by choosing from a selection of optional modules, creating a career pathway into areas such as cultural diversity; global development, inequality and sustainable living; biological and evolutionary anthropology; environmental and climatic change; and material culture and heritage.
“The modules on offer are quite varied, and you can tailor them to your career goals. For example, the module ‘Biological Anthropology’ in my third year has taught me how to correctly excavate, age, sex, and handle human remains. These skills will be valuable for my future career as a field archaeologist.”
Flexible learning environment
Alfie appreciated how helpful the Department of Archaeology was when supporting him with a last-minute module change.
“I had already locked in my third-year modules, but I wanted to switch to a summer placement module after being offered the opportunity to work at the British Museum. I emailed my academic tutor, and he allowed me to alter my module selection to accommodate my change of plans. The Department is very flexible with this.”
In his final year, Alfie took a module from outside of the Department of Archaeology. Students can select modules from other departments that align with their personal interests, such as Climate Change, Gender and Politics, and Language and Power.
“I did a physical geography module which involved an expedition to Iceland where we created a journal on the geothermal activity. It was a great experience and it got me out of my comfort zone. The scenery was amazing, we visited active volcanos, hot springs, and geysers.”
A particular highlight for Alfie was the Archaeology Field School, where he got to take part in the excavation at Dunyvaig Castle on the island of Islay in Scotland.
“Theory and practise are very balanced. The Department run excavations every summer, so I was able to get lot of hands-on experience, which put all the theory from lectures into context.
“I very much enjoyed the Field School. For three weeks, we dug up a neolithic campsite and the remains of Dunyvaig Castle in Islay, Scotland. We stayed in a hostel on the island, where all the students ate and lived together. I met some great friends because of that trip which has made second and third year even more enjoyable.”