Bachelor's Courses

BNWA-6: Geoarchäologie und Archäometrie (Deutsch/optional English)

  • Inhaltliche Vertiefung des Faches und Erörterung seiner Stellung im Bereichder Kultur- und Naturwissenschaften
  • Spezielle Anwendungen der Geoarchäologie und Archäometrie
  • Fundplatzgenese und bio-, geo-, und anthropogene Einflüsse
  • Archäologische Ablagerungsprozesse
  • Postablagerungsprozesse und Diagenese
  • Organische Residue und Biomarker in der Archäometrie
  • Übersicht über die Eigenschaften unterschiedlicher archäologischer Materiale

(jährlich im Wintersemester angeboten)

Teaching contributions:
BNWA-1: Einführung in die Naturwissenschaftliche Archäologie
BNWA-2: Chemie für Archäologen

Master's Courses

Master's level courses from the Geoarchaeology group are part of the MSc program Archaeological Sciences and Human Evolution (ASHEstudy contents) and can lead to a specialization in Geoarchaeology. For more information about this program, feel free to contact those mentioned on the ASHE pages, or the Group Leader.

ASHE-3c: Introduction to Geoarchaeology

This module provides a general introduction to the field of geoarchaeology, with a particular emphasis on common depositional environments and processes encountered at archaeological sites. Key topics include:

  • Sedimentary processes in different environments, from the site to landscape scale
  • Basic concepts of archaeological stratigraphy
  • The effects of different environments on the preservation and formation of the archaeological record
  • Occupation deposits
  • Human impact on landscapes
  • Soil-forming processes in the archaeological record
  • Post-depositional alteration processes

This module is foundational for further courses offered in geoarchaeology. (offered annually in winter semesters)

ASHE-6c-1: Archaeological Deposits and Stratigraphy

Archaeological Deposits and Stratigraphy takes a depositional approach to the study of archaeological sites, emphasizing the role of site-formation processes in the archaeological record. The course covers basic and advanced concepts of deposits and stratigraphy at the scale of the archaeological site.

Key topics covered include:

  • Archaeological stratigraphy of architectural and non-architectural sites
  • Natural processes of sedimentation at archaeological sites
  • Anthropogenic processes of sedimentation at archaeological sites
  • Diagenesis and post-depositional alteration
  • Approaches to studying and documenting archaeological stratigraphy

(offered every other summer semester)

ASHE-6c-2: Experimental Archaeology

Experimental Archaeology introduces students to the history and theory of experimental archaeology, and provides practical experience in developing research questions that can be addressed through archaeological experimentation. Together with the instructors, students will develop and carry out an archaeological experiment.

(offered every other summer semester)

ASHE-7c/9c-1: Archaeological Micromorphology

Introduction to micromorphology and thin- section description and analysis covering basics of microscopy and petrographic microscopy, standard thin-section descriptive terminology, identification of common components and features of archaeological thin sections, identification and interpretation of microfabrics of archaeological deposit, concepts of microfacies and microfacies analysis.

(offered at least once every three semesters)

ASHE-7c/9c-2: Case Studies in Micromorphology

Weekly, students will read a set of papers on a specific archaeological site or topic and will then observe the thin sections used in the studies. The course employs the large geoarchaeological collection as the basis for the selected case studies.

(offered at least once every three semesters)

ASHE-7c/9c-3: Field and Laboratory Techniques in Geoarchaeology

Laboratory and field- based course to introduce students to the practical, methodological aspects of collecting and analyzing geoarchaeological data, incl. documenting and describing archaeological profiles, collecting geoarchaeological samples on site and on the landscape, processing samples for granulometry and elemental analysis, processing samples for thin-section production, digitization of geoarchaeological thin sections and data, database generation and management.

(offered at least once every three semesters)

ASHE-7c/9c-4: Microanalytics

This course introduces students to a range of microscopic analytical techniques as applied in archaeological and geoscientific contexts that include FTIR/μFTIR, XRF/μXRF and XRD/μXRD, SEM.

(offered at least once every three semesters)

ASHE-7c/9c-5: Advanced FTIR

This course deepens the knowledge of FTIR/μFTIR application e.g. in Zooarchaeology, including advanced data processing using statistical software.

(offered at least once every three semesters)

ASHE-8c: Interdisciplinary Geoarchaeology

After individual consultation one compulsory-elective module import from one of the other six specialisations Zooarchaeology, Palaeoanthropology, Archaeobotany, Paleogenetics, Archaeometry, Stone Age Archaeology (see "Prerequisite"), e.g. ASHE-8a Anthracology, ASHE-8b Organic Materials in Archaeological Contexts, ASHE-8f Stone Age economics, ASHE-9b Material Science and Archaeological Ceramics: Ceramic Petrography and Geochemistry.

Teaching contributions:
ASHE-1a: Perspectives in Human Evolution
This course is taught by multiple lecturers from different disciplines to provide an overview of evolutionary theory as applied to the human lineage. From the geoarchaeology group, this includes a review of methods, and their limitations, for dating, paleoenvironmental reconstruction and site formation processes and their importance for understanding the human past.

Master's level courses are taught in English

PhD in Geoarchaeology

  • For information on the PhD programs at the Faculty of Humanities, click here.
  • For information on the PhD programs at the Faculty of Science, click here.

Training Program in Archaeological Micromorphology