• Offered by School of Archaeology and Anthropology
  • ANU College ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences
  • Classification Advanced
  • Course subject Archaeology
  • Areas of interest Archaeology, Biological Anthropology, Forensic Anthropology, Evolution and Ecology, Environmental Science
  • Academic career PGRD
  • Course convener
    • Dr Mathieu Leclerc
    • Dr Tim Denham
  • Mode of delivery In Person
  • Offered in Winter Session 2023
    Spring Session 2023
    See Future Offerings

This course provides flexible intensity of learning as a 6 unit course. The course delivers low-intensity online learning built around an intensive class of 5 or 6 days duration. The content is variable - offering a variety of core areas of research expertise in Archaeological and Evolutionary Science, always taught over one academic session. The course has a standard generic structure, but with varied topic content, like a reading course or sub-thesis.

Students commence the course with 4-5 weeks of independent reading and research as preparation. The student then attends a 5 day intensive course normally on campus at the ANU, at the ANU Kioloa Field station, at NARU or at another laboratory or residential field location. This intensive five day program is followed up with work on tasks and course assessments with on-line supervision at low intensity, for delivery and completion by the end of the session/semester.

Normally each year, this course will deliver a minimum of three Masterclass courses. The content and topics will vary from course to course. At least ONE Masterclass will be offered per year with the option of up to four Masterclasses per annum with one in each of the Summer, Autumn, Winter and Spring Sessions, dependent on student demand and availability of faculty and/or visitors.

Learning Outcomes

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

  1. develop a basic understanding of skills and concepts in the thematic area defined for the Master Class;
  2. practice the core skills and handled materials, data and/or equipment which are appropriate to a basic level of research training or professional practice in the thematic area of the Master Class;
  3. acquire a sound overview of contexts and situations in which the theme area is applied in archaeological and/or evolutionary practice;
  4. reach a level of expertise appropriate to designing a small project or desk-top study in which skills defined for the theme area of the Master Class could be applied; and
  5. achieve a critical level of understanding of basic literature for the theme area of the Master Class.

Indicative Assessment

  1. Delivery of a scoping tasks/review paper ahead of the intensive week (2000 words) (30) [LO 1,3,5]
  2. Coursework assessments (hands-on practicals) during the week-long intensive course (40) [LO 1,2,3,4,5]
  3. A project paper, completed in the second half of the academic session based on the module theme, supported by on-line mentoring (3000 words) (30) [LO 2,4,5]

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.


The workload of this course will normally comprise a total of 130 hours over 12 weeks:
a) 60 hours of preparation
b) 40 hours of intensive laboratory and/or field based tuition spread over 5 days for which attendance is compulsory and
c) up to 30 hours of follow-up tasks and/or private study for delivery of assessment tasks.

Inherent Requirements

Not applicable

Requisite and Incompatibility

You will need to contact the School of Archaeology and Anthropology to request a permission code to enrol in this course.

Prescribed Texts

Varies by theme topic, but general preparatory and introductory background will normally be found for each Master Class module within one or more of the following MArchSci program recommended texts:

Balme, J. and Paterson, A.  (eds) 2006 Archaeology in Practice : a student guide to Archaeological Analyses. Blackwell Publishing: Oxford.

Brothwell, D.R. and Pollard, A.M. (eds) 2001 Handbook of Archaeological Sciences. John Wiley Interscience: Chichester.

David, B. and Thomas, J. (eds) 2008 Handbook of Landscape Archaeology. Left Coast Press: Walnut Creek.


Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

Commonwealth Support (CSP) Students
If you have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). More information about your student contribution amount for each course at Fees

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are a domestic graduate coursework student with a Domestic Tuition Fee (DTF) place or international student you will be required to pay course tuition fees (see below). Course tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2023 $3960
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2023 $5820
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only.
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.

Winter Session

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
Interpreting pottery: macroscopic and microscopic
4168 04 Sep 2023 04 Sep 2023 08 Sep 2023 15 Sep 2023 In Person N/A

Spring Session

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
6159 01 Nov 2023 06 Nov 2023 10 Nov 2023 24 Nov 2023 In Person N/A

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