• Class Number 6371
  • Term Code 3260
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
    • Dougald O'Reilly
    • Dougald O'Reilly
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 25/07/2022
  • Class End Date 28/10/2022
  • Census Date 31/08/2022
  • Last Date to Enrol 01/08/2022
SELT Survey Results

The course presents an overview of archaeological research undertaken in Mainland and Island Southeast Asia from 1.5 million years ago to the Indianized civilizations of the first and early second millennia AD. Particular emphasis will be placed on the Pleistocene colonisation of SE Asia; on the archaeology of early agricultural and Bronze/Iron Age societies; on the archaeology of the Indianized civilizations of Burma, Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia; and on the cultural and linguistic ancestries of the present inhabitants of Southeast Asia.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

Upon successful completion of this course, students will have the knowledge and skills to:
  1. Demonstrate a comprehension of the broad trajectory of socio-political development in prehistoric/historic SE Asia evolution;
  2. Evaluate archaeological journal articles; and
  3. Demonstrate the skills and knowledge needed to have a basic concept of regional archaeology.

Field Trips


Additional Course Costs


Examination Material or equipment


Required Resources

Higham, C. 2002 Early Cultures of Mainland Southeast Asia


Higham, C. 2014 Early Mainland Southeast Asia: From First Humans to Angkor


O’Reilly, D. 2007 Early Civilizations of Southeast Asia. Alta Mira Press, New York.

Bellina, B. et al. eds 2010 50 Years of Archaeology in Southeast Asia.

Bellwood, P. et al. eds. 1995 The Austronesians: Historical and Comparative Perspectives (free download via ANU E Press at http://epress.anu.edu.au/austronesians_citation.html.

Bellwood, P. 2007 Prehistory of the Indo-Malaysian Archipelago. (reprint of 2nd ed.1997, free download through ANU E Press at http://epress.anu.edu.au/pima_citation.html).    

Glover, I. and Bellwood, P. eds. 2004 Southeast Asia: from Prehistory to History.

Higham, C. 2001 The Civilization of Angkor.

Moore, E. 2007, Early Landscapes of Myanmar. River Books, Bangkok

Oxenham, M. and Tayles, N. eds. 2006 Bioarchaeology of Southeast Asia.

Sagart, L. et al. eds. 2005 The Peopling of East Asia: Putting Together Archaeology, Linguistics and Genetics

Sanchez-Mazas, A. et al. eds 2008 Past Human Migrations in East Asia : Matching Archaeology, Linguistics and Genetics

Stark, M. ed. 2006 Archaeology of Asia.

Staff Feedback

Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:
  • Written comments
  • Verbal comments
  • Feedback to the whole class, to groups, to individuals, focus groups

Student Feedback

ANU is committed to the demonstration of educational excellence and regularly seeks feedback from students. Students are encouraged to offer feedback directly to their Course Convener or through their College and Course representatives (if applicable). The feedback given in these surveys is anonymous and provides the Colleges, University Education Committee and Academic Board with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement. The Surveys and Evaluation website provides more information on student surveys at ANU and reports on the feedback provided on ANU courses.

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 Introduction to the course: and Early Humans in SE Asia, Evolution and Palaeolithic caves in the region. Hunter/Gatherers, Cave sites in Thailand and Myanmar, Early cultures of Vietnam and the Neolithic. Tutorial: Discussion on Geography and language
2 Neolithic Vietnam continued and the origins of agriculture in Asia. Transition to Agriculture in Thailand, Vietnam’s Coastal Neolthic and early Malay sites Tutorial: Discussion on Early Cultures of SE Asia
3 Phung Nguyen culture in Vietnam, Chiefdoms, the Dong Dau, Go Mun and Ha Long Cultures of Vietnam in Vietnam. The Neolithic expansion in Thailand, Bronze production in Thailand and sites with evidence for bronze use. Tutorial: Discussion on Neolithic SE Asia
4 Bronze Age Thailand continued and the second occupation of Nong Nor. Bronze Age Thailand continued, Iron Age Bac Bo, Dong Son and Sa Huyhn Tutorial: Student Presentations
5 Sa Huynh continued, start of the Iron Age, Iron Age in Thailand The Plain of Jars in Laos Tutorial: Student Presentations
6 Iron Age in Northeast Thailand and Cambodia Cambodian Iron Age continued Tutorial: Discussion on Bronze Age Social Change
7 Iron Age Cambodia continued Banteay Kou sites and the Political Economy Model Tutorial: Student Presentations
8 Contact with South Asia and Funan an early state Funan continued and The Pyu of Myanmar Tutorial: Discussion on Social Change Iron Age Thailand
9 The Pyu continued and Dvaravati Dvaravati continued and Chenla in Cambodia Tutorial: Student Presentations
10 Chenla Continued, Introduction to Sri Vijaya Sri Vijaya continued, Sailendras and the Rise of Angkor Tutorial: Student Presentations
11 Champa, Vietnam and Early Angkor Angkor cities Tutorial: Student Presentations
12 Early Angkor Kings and Monuments Parallel developments in the islands of SE Asia. (Prof. Peter Bellwood)

Tutorial Registration

Register for tutorials on Wattle page.

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Learning Outcomes
Presentation and summary 15 % 1,3
Critical Reading 5 % 2
Essay 40 % 1,2,3
Examination 40 % 1,3

* If the Due Date and Return of Assessment date are blank, see the Assessment Tab for specific Assessment Task details


ANU has educational policies, procedures and guidelines, which are designed to ensure that staff and students are aware of the University’s academic standards, and implement them. Students are expected to have read the Academic Misconduct Rule before the commencement of their course. Other key policies and guidelines include:

Assessment Requirements

The ANU is using Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website Students may choose not to submit assessment items through Turnitin. In this instance you will be required to submit, alongside the assessment item itself, hard copies of all references included in the assessment item.

Moderation of Assessment

Marks that are allocated during Semester are to be considered provisional until formalised by the College examiners meeting at the end of each Semester. If appropriate, some moderation of marks might be applied prior to final results being released.


Students are expected to read assigned reading for particular tutorials and be prepared to discuss the contents (details on Wattle).

Assessment Task 1

Value: 15 %
Learning Outcomes: 1,3

Presentation and summary

A 12-14 minute presentation on a selected topic pertinent to the course. A summary of the presentation c. 500 words.  Addresses Learning Outcomes 1, 3.

Assessment Task 2

Value: 5 %
Learning Outcomes: 2

Critical Reading

For each tutorial students are to choose a reading and summarise it and identify terms unfamiliar to you.

Assessment Task 3

Value: 40 %
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3


An essay on a topic selected from those provided or by choosing given lecturer consent. 2000 words

Assessment Task 4

Value: 40 %
Learning Outcomes: 1,3


50 minute exam, Wattle based.

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a core part of our culture as a community of scholars. At its heart, academic integrity is about behaving ethically. This means that all members of the community commit to honest and responsible scholarly practice and to upholding these values with respect and fairness. The Australian National University commits to embedding the values of academic integrity in our teaching and learning. We ensure that all members of our community understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. The ANU expects staff and students to uphold high standards of academic integrity and act ethically and honestly, to ensure the quality and value of the qualification that you will graduate with. The University has policies and procedures in place to promote academic integrity and manage academic misconduct. Visit the following Academic honesty & plagiarism website for more information about academic integrity and what the ANU considers academic misconduct. The ANU offers a number of services to assist students with their assignments, examinations, and other learning activities. The Academic Skills and Learning Centre offers a number of workshops and seminars that you may find useful for your studies.

Online Submission

The ANU uses Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.

Hardcopy Submission

For some forms of assessment (hand written assignments, art works, laboratory notes, etc.) hard copy submission is appropriate when approved by the Associate Dean (Education). Hard copy submissions must utilise the Assignment Cover Sheet. Please keep a copy of tasks completed for your records.

Late Submission

No submission of assessment tasks without an extension after the due date will be permitted. If an assessment task is not submitted by the due date, a mark of 0 will be awarded. OR Late submission of assessment tasks without an extension are penalised at the rate of 5% of the possible marks available per working day or part thereof. Late submission of assessment tasks is not accepted after 10 working days after the due date, or on or after the date specified in the course outline for the return of the assessment item. Late submission is not accepted for take-home examinations.

Referencing Requirements

Accepted academic practice for referencing sources that you use in presentations can be found via the links on the Wattle site, under the file named “ANU and College Policies, Program Information, Student Support Services and Assessment”. Alternatively, you can seek help through the Students Learning Development website.

Extensions and Penalties

Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure The Course Convener may grant extensions for assessment pieces that are not examinations or take-home examinations. If you need an extension, you must request an extension in writing on or before the due date. If you have documented and appropriate medical evidence that demonstrates you were not able to request an extension on or before the due date, you may be able to request it after the due date.

Privacy Notice

The ANU has made a number of third party, online, databases available for students to use. Use of each online database is conditional on student end users first agreeing to the database licensor’s terms of service and/or privacy policy. Students should read these carefully. In some cases student end users will be required to register an account with the database licensor and submit personal information, including their: first name; last name; ANU email address; and other information. In cases where student end users are asked to submit ‘content’ to a database, such as an assignment or short answers, the database licensor may only use the student’s ‘content’ in accordance with the terms of service — including any (copyright) licence the student grants to the database licensor. Any personal information or content a student submits may be stored by the licensor, potentially offshore, and will be used to process the database service in accordance with the licensors terms of service and/or privacy policy. If any student chooses not to agree to the database licensor’s terms of service or privacy policy, the student will not be able to access and use the database. In these circumstances students should contact their lecturer to enquire about alternative arrangements that are available.

Distribution of grades policy

Academic Quality Assurance Committee monitors the performance of students, including attrition, further study and employment rates and grade distribution, and College reports on quality assurance processes for assessment activities, including alignment with national and international disciplinary and interdisciplinary standards, as well as qualification type learning outcomes. Since first semester 1994, ANU uses a grading scale for all courses. This grading scale is used by all academic areas of the University.

Support for students

The University offers students support through several different services. You may contact the services listed below directly or seek advice from your Course Convener, Student Administrators, or your College and Course representatives (if applicable).
Dougald O'Reilly

Research Interests

Archaeology, SE Asia, Complex societies

Dougald O'Reilly

By Appointment
By Appointment
Dougald O'Reilly

Research Interests

Dougald O'Reilly

By Appointment
By Appointment

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