• Class Number 4083
  • Term Code 3330
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
    • Duncan Wright
    • Duncan Wright
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 20/02/2023
  • Class End Date 26/05/2023
  • Census Date 31/03/2023
  • Last Date to Enrol 27/02/2023
SELT Survey Results

Australia has a unique and important human history. During a 50,000 year period geographically varied cultural systems formed across the continent, adjusting in response to social and environmental circumstances. First Australian's faced an Ice Age that lasted ten millennia and flooding events in which present-day Australia and Papua New Guinea separated from a vast super continent. Our Nations history is also unique because it draws upon the practice of archaeology and history, also the expertise of First Australian and Torres Strait Islander peoples. Each method of ‘history building’ produces, narrates and disseminates knowledge that intersects and diverges in ways that are both nuanced and complex. In this course you will learn about the long and continuing history of people on this continent while also being introduced to unique skill sets required should you wish to seek archaeology employment in Australia. In addition we will engage with different ways of understanding Australia’s story, resurrecting 'histories' from the various disciplines and knowledge systems.

Learning Outcomes

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

  1. understand principal themes, issues and debates in Australian archaeology;
  2. develop skills required to work as an archaeologist in Australia (e.g. consultation with Traditional Custodians, site recording, preparation of grant applications and academic/ consultancy site reports); and
  3. familiarise yourself with the archaeologists role within a wider corpus of history building disciplines and systems.

Field Trips

There is a compulsory field trip (within ACT) on the 2nd and 3rd March. This will be hosted by two Traditional Custodians who speak for Canberra and will involve collecting datasets that you will require to complete Assessment 2. A minibus has been booked for this event.

Required Resources

Archaeology of Ancient Australia, Peter Hiscock, 2008, Routledge

+ Readings set by your class mates during tutorials

 First Footprints, Scott Cane, 2013, Allen and Unwin Press

Staff Feedback

Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:

  • written comments
  • verbal comments
  • feedback to whole class, groups, individuals, focus group etc

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.

Other Information

Please be aware that slight changes may occur to order of lectures etc. It is important you regularly check Wattle/ class forum for updates.

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 Introduction See Wattle for details (same goes for all weeks)
2 Workshopping Australian Archaeology 1 Compulsory field trip on 2nd and 3rd March
3 Workshopping Australian Archaeology 2
4 No lecture
5 Origins – who were the First Australians?
6 Hunter’s or Farmer’s? Assignment 2
7 Continuity or change? Isolation or contact?
8 Australian Nation or Nations? Solidarity or conflict?
9 Spiritual realms
10 Past in the present
11 Australia's story through plants. Conclusions Assignment 1
12 No lecture Assignment 3

Tutorial Registration

See wattle

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Due Date Return of assessment Learning Outcomes
Group assignment? design and coordinate a mini tutorial on a topic of your interest 15 % 19/05/2023 15/06/2023 1,3
Aboriginal Site Assessment Report (1500 words) 35 % 18/04/2023 05/05/2023 2
2000 Word Essay 50 % 25/05/2023 10/06/2023 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 Academic Integrity . In rare cases where online submission using Turnitin software is not technically possible; or where not using Turnitin software has been justified by the Course Convener and approved by the Associate Dean (Education) on the basis of the teaching model being employed; students shall submit assessment online via ‘Wattle’ outside of Turnitin, or failing that in hard copy, or through a combination of submission methods as approved by the Associate Dean (Education). The submission method is detailed below.

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.


Each week you will need to attend lectorials (aligned with Assessment 2, 3). These will often be structured around a short, archaeology focused lectures, the theme of which is then opened up to involve alternative (including First Nations) perspectives. The format is slightly different in Weeks 2 & 3, workshops that directly align with practical/ methods-based knowledge which is vital for completion of Assessment 2.

You will also need to attend tutorials which will, in part, be run by you (as 'mini tutorials' - Assessment 1).

Assessment Task 1

Value: 15 %
Due Date: 19/05/2023
Return of Assessment: 15/06/2023
Learning Outcomes: 1,3

Group assignment? design and coordinate a mini tutorial on a topic of your interest

Guided mini tutorial part 1: post discussion questions (x5, total 100 words) and focused readings (x1-2) on Wattle at least 4 days prior to the tutorial (5) [LO 1]

Guided mini tutorial part 2: presentation of 10 minutes and coordinated discussion of 10 minutes (10) [LO 1]

Assessment Task 2

Value: 35 %
Due Date: 18/04/2023
Return of Assessment: 05/05/2023
Learning Outcomes: 2

Aboriginal Site Assessment Report (1500 words)

See Wattle for details

Assessment Task 3

Value: 50 %
Due Date: 25/05/2023
Return of Assessment: 10/06/2023
Learning Outcomes: 1,3

2000 Word Essay

See Wattle for details

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a core part of the ANU culture as a community of scholars. At its heart, academic integrity is about behaving ethically, committing to honest and responsible scholarly practice and upholding these values with respect and fairness.

The ANU commits to assisting all members of our community to 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 be familiar with the academic integrity principle and Academic Misconduct Rule, 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 Academic Misconduct Rule is in place to promote academic integrity and manage academic misconduct. Very minor breaches of the academic integrity principle may result in a reduction of marks of up to 10% of the total marks available for the assessment. The ANU offers a number of online and in person services to assist students with their assignments, examinations, and other learning activities. Visit the Academic Skills website for more information about academic integrity, your responsibilities and for assistance with your assignments, writing skills and study.

Online Submission

You will be required to electronically sign a declaration as part of the submission of your assignment. Please keep a copy of the assignment for your records. Unless an exemption has been approved by the Associate Dean (Education) submission must be through Turnitin.

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

Individual assessment tasks may or may not allow for late submission. Policy regarding late submission is detailed below:

  • Late submission not permitted. If submission of assessment tasks without an extension after the due date is not permitted, a mark of 0 will be awarded.
  • Late submission permitted. 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.

Returning Assignments

Returned on WattleARCH6004 - Australian Archaeology

Extensions and Penalties

Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure. Extensions may be granted 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.

Resubmission of Assignments

No resubmission is allowed.

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).

Duncan Wright

Research Interests

Australian archaeology, archaeology of religion and ritual

Duncan Wright

By Appointment
By Appointment
Duncan Wright

Research Interests

Duncan Wright

By Appointment
By Appointment

Responsible Officer: Registrar, Student Administration / Page Contact: Website Administrator / Frequently Asked Questions