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Magister Thesis in Landscape/Environmental Archaeology, 15 Credits

Swedish name: Magisteruppsats i landskapsarkeologi/miljöarkeologi

This syllabus is valid: 2021-06-14 and until further notice

Course code: 1AR076

Credit points: 15

Education level: Second cycle

Main Field of Study and progress level: Landscape Archaeology: Second cycle, contains degree project for Master of Arts/Master of Science (60 credits)
Environmental Archaeology: Second cycle, contains degree project for Master of Arts/Master of Science (60 credits)

Grading scale: VG Pass with distinction, G Pass, U Fail

Established by: Faculty director of studies, Faculty of arts, 2021-09-21


The course includes independent written project work where the student acquires in-depth knowledge with a focus on either landscape or environmental archaeology (or an integrated landscape and environmental archaeology extended essay if agreed with the supervisor). The student is able to implement and evaluate applications of theory and method within the discipline/s. The course can be included in a magister's degree or a master's degree. The course is part of the Master's Program in Landscape Archeology / Environmental Archeology, but can also be read as a stand-alone course. 

The student must write a scientific essay on a landscape / environmental archeological problem and defend it at a seminar. Furthermore, s/he must actively participate in seminars where extended essays are evaluated and be an opponent at an essay seminar. 

The course is given in English.

Expected learning outcomes

After completing the course, the student must demonstrate: 
Knowledge and understanding 
  • have demonstrated good knowledge of how landscape / environmental archaeological survey methods can be used (e.g. mapping, field survey, cartographic, remote sensing, archaeobotany, soil chemical and physical analyzes, pollen analysis, wood anatomy, insect analysis etc.). 
  • demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of the chosen topic commensurate with the level expected at the end of the first year of masters' study. 
Skills and Abilities 
  • have demonstrated an advanced knowledge of the skills needed to understand and interpret the landscape.  
  • have shown the ability to formulate a clear, delimited and scientifically relevant landscape / environmental archaeological thesis. 
  • be able to set up an exploration strategy to solve a landscape / environmental archeological problem, which may affect landscape change, ancient monuments or past environments.  
  • be able to independently conduct a survey, collect - analyze, evaluate and interpret data. 
  • have shown good ability to write a scientific text of good linguistic quality. 
  • have demonstrated the ability to process data in a consistent manner and in accordance with accepted standards. 
  • have demonstrated the ability to orally present and discuss landscape / environmental archeological results and arguments in a clear manner. 
  • be able to summarize and discuss the theoretical starting points of landscape / environmental archaeology. 
  • be able to systematically search for literature that is relevant to the essay's key research question/s. 
  • be able to undertake an overview of previous research relevant to the thesis. 
  • have the ability to theoretically and methodologically relate the work to previous research in landscape archeology / environmental archaeology. 
  • have the ability to show how landscape studies / environmental archaeology can provide an in-depth understanding of archaeological problems. 
Perceptiveness and Reasoning 
  • Have demonstrated the ability to review and evaluate other landscape / environmental archaeological work, both with fellow students and in relation to landscape / environmental archaeological research 
  • Interrogate data generated and determine the most appropriate methods of interpretation and presentation. 
  • Synthesize relevant data in order to construct a coherent argument. 
  • Critically assess data sources and their viability for use in research. 

Required Knowledge

Univ: 30 credits courses at advanced level in landscape / environmental archaeology, or equivalent. 

Form of instruction

The teaching consists of seminars and supervision. Field and laboratory exercises under the supervision of teachers may occur. 
The student normally receives supervision only during the period covered by the essay course.

Examination modes

The course is examined through an assessment of the extended essay, and opposition and active participation at the essay seminars. At essay seminars, the ability for oral presentation and discussion is also examined (Formative assessment). 
The grading scale for the course consists of the grades Fail, Pass and Pass with Distinction. The Department of Historical, Philosophical and Religious Studies' criteria for assessment of seminars and essays are used in assessment and grading. Students who have received a passing grade may not take a re-examination. 

For students who have not passed the regular examination, a retest is organised within two months of the regular examination, and another within one year, known as a collection test. 

 Students who have twice failed a test for a course or part of the course have the right to request from the educational leader of the faculty of humanities that another examiner be appointed to the next test unless special reasons contradict this. 

Deviations from the examination form of the syllabus can be made for a student who has decisions on pedagogical support due to disability. Individual adaptation of the examination form should be considered based on the student's needs. The examination form is adapted within the expected study results of the syllabus. At the request of the student, the teacher responsible for the course, in consultation with the examiner, must quickly decide on the adapted examination form. The decision should then be communicated to the student. 

In the event that the syllabus expires or undergoes major changes, students are guaranteed at least three examination sessions (including the regular examination) according to the regulations of the syllabus on which the student was originally registered for a maximum period of two years from the end of the previous syllabus or the course has ceased to be offered.

Other regulations

In granting a university degree, this course may not be combined with any other course that has a similar content. In case of uncertainty, the student should consult the Director of Studies at the Department of Historical, Philosophical and Religious Studies.


Valid from: 2021 week 46