Course Descriptions

ARCH 237 (US) Introduction to Global Archaeology (1)

This course provides an introduction to the multidisciplinary field of modern archaeology. Through this course, students will be introduced to the history, theories, methods, and broader social contexts of material culture studies in the investigation of human past. The course serves two functions. First, it provides a survey of important archaeological discoveries from around the world, placing the finds in both archaeological as well as contemporary social contexts. Second, the course demonstrates the theoretical and methodological developments of the discipline over the past century by introducing the different kinds of information that archaeologists use to interpret the past..

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Understanding Society
  • Offering: Fall
  • Instructor: Staff

ARCH 337 Archaeological Theories and Methods (1)

This course examines the broad humanistic foundations of global archaeology through an in-depth study of the theoretical and methodological underpinnings of archaeological research. The course studies how material culture is archaeologically theorized, located, investigated, and evaluated to gain insight into past human activities and social practices, with an emphasis on the diversity and interdisciplinarity of archaeological methods.

  • Prerequisite: ARCH 237
  • Offering: Spring
  • Instructor: Staff

ARCH 355 Archaeology Field School (1)

This four- to six-week summer archaeology field school provides intensive, on-site training in the archaeological methods and techniques in conjunction with the Ness of Brodgar archaeology project, a joint project led by Orkney College, The University of the Highlands and Islands, and Willamette University. The Ness of Brodgar sites is a Neolithic ceremonial complex situated on a thin promontory between two lakes and the megalithic stone circles of the Ring of Brodgar and Stones of Stenness. The excavation emphasizes a holistic approach to archaeological inquiry. As such, in addition to daily instruction on excavation theory, technique and recovery, course lectures and fieldwork will emphasize a variety of topics including topographical and geophysical survey techniques, stratigraphy, ceramic typology, geomorphology, paleobotany, and the archaeology of the Orkney Islands. Visits to regional archaeological sites and museums will provide a broad cultural and historical background of the archaeology of the region.

  • Offering: Annually
  • Instructor: Pike

ARCH 390 Independent Study (variable credits)

This course provides an opportunity to conduct a major research project which cannot be satisfied through any existing course in the major’s curriculum. The project must be supervised by a Willamette faculty member. Proposed projects must be submitted to the Archaeology Program Coordinator and must be approved by the Archaeology Program’s core faculty.

  • Offering: On demand
  • Instructor: Staff

ARCH 394 Internship in Archaeological Studies (1)

This course is designed to promote student involvement in the community and to create opportunities for students to conduct archaeological investigations. The faculty-supervised internships will provide students with opportunities to interpret archaeological data within a professional context. Interns will be placed in organizations utilizing archaeological skills in academic or non-academic settings including government agencies, cultural resource management firms, non-profit organizations, tribal governments and museums. Interns are expected to work 12 hours a week, meet regularly with the instructor and write a final research paper that concerns some aspect of the material culture that was processed during the internship.

  • Offering On demand
  • Instructor: Staff

ARCH 498 Advanced Archaeology Field School (1)

This four-to six-week course offers advanced training in archaeological field techniques, theory and recording. Students may participate in either the Ness of Brodgar excavation or another archaeological excavation. Students will work closely with senior excavation staff to coordinate, manage and supervise excavations and/or survey teams. Students are responsible for the daily upkeep of field books, recording logs, section drawings, and data entry. Students will develop and write summaries for each context they oversee. In many instances, participants will work alongside first-year field archaeology students and assists in the training of basic field techniques and methodology. Students will be required to keep a journal of their experience and write a substantial research paper relating their excavation to an important and relevant archaeological question. Students must consult with their advisor before enrolling in the Advanced Archaeology Field School.

  • Offering: Annually
  • Instructor: Pike

ARCH 499W Archaeology Senior Experience Project (1)

This capstone course provides students with the framework to design, collect data, interpret and compose an independent senior research thesis. Each student will consult with his or her thesis advisor to develop a suitable research topic, methodology and timetable to effectively carryout the research goals. At the end of the semester students will complete their thesis and deliver a public presentation of their work.

  • General Education Requirement Fulfillment: Writing-centered
  • Prerequisite: Senior standing or by permission
  • Offering: Annually
  • Instructor: Nicgorski, Pike