Experimental Archaeology & Material Culture

GradDip Experimental Archaeology & Material Culture
Graduate Taught (level 9 nfq, credits 60)
• Experimental archaeology can be defined as the reconstruction of past buildings, technologies, things and environmental contexts so as to enable a better understanding of the character and role of materiality and material culture in peoples lives.
• It may also involve innovative, experiential interrogations of past lifeways and material culture, so as to explore and understand how people interact with each other and the world.

Who should apply?
Full Time option suitable for:
Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. Yes

Part Time option suitable for:
Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. No

Course Description
UCD School of Archaeology has a growing momentum and international reputation in experimental archaeology and material culture studies. The School organised and hosted the 9th International Experimental Archaeology Conference (EAC9) in January 2015, with 200 attendees from 28 different countries.

Students of the GDip in Experimental Archaeology and Material Culture will be integrated into UCD School of Archaeology's European and global experimental archaeological and museum networks, particularly through Prof Aidan O'Sullivan's Board Membership of EXARC, the ICOMOS-affiliated worldwide network of AOAMs and experimental archaeologists.

The MSc in Experimental Archaeology and Material Culture will be based at the UCD Centre for Experimental Archaeology and Material Culture (CEAMC), the only university campus-based facility of its type in the world for dedicated experimental archaeological research and teaching.

Students who achieve a GPA of 3.2 or higher can apply to upgrade from the GDip to the MSc programme.

Subjects taught

What modules can I take?
• Study in an exciting, new multidisciplinary programme, with lectures by UCD staff and international experts, with practical training in laboratories and the Centre for Experimental Archaeology, and fieldtrips.
• Explore and investigate though lectures, seminars, and practical project learning how people in the past understood and worked with stone, flint, clay, pottery, wood, leather, woolen and vegetal textiles, and other materials, and how they constructed and inhabited buildings developed different technologies, and made and used things.
• Gain key professional skills in object and materials analyses, including the use of artefact photography, 3D laser scanning, photogrammetric modeling and visualization technologies, and GIS, and the use of optical microscopes and Scanning Electron Microscopes. Through the MSc programme you will have access to training in Energy Dispersive X-ray Spectroscopy (EDX), X-ray Fluorescence (XRF) and X-ray Diffraction, thus gaining insights into how we investigate past material culture through detailed elemental analysis.

Stage 1 - Core
Practical Experimental Archaeology

Research Project Skills

Material Culture

Experimental Archaeology: Making, Understanding, Storytelling

Ancient Materialities

Stage 1 - Option

Archaeology of Food

Experiment Archaeology & Ancient Technologies

Heritage Management

Early Medieval Ireland and Beyond: Social Identity and Belonging AD 400-1100

Feudal castles and Gothic cathedrals: building medieval Europe, AD1000-1500

Hunter-Gatherers: archaeological & anthropological perspectives

The archaeology of collapse

Migration in the Past

Facing Innovations: Innovations and transformations that shaped ancient societies

Communicating Heritage

Introduction to GIS and Spatial Methods in Archaeology

Heritage Marketing & Management

Archaeology Field & Lab Tech I

Archaeology Field & Lab Tech 2




W373: 1 Years Full Time
W374: 2 Years Part Time


GradDip Experimental Archaeology & Material Culture (W373) Full Time
EU: fee per year - €6105
nonEU: fee per year - €13270

GradDip Experimental Archaeology & Material Culture (W374) Part Time
EU: fee per year - €3650
nonEU: fee per year - €6635

***Fees are subject to change.

Tuition fee information is available on the UCD Fees website.

Enrolment dates

Next Intake: 2020/2021 September

More details
  • Qualifications

    Postgraduate Diploma (Level 9 NFQ)

  • Attendance type


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