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Institute of Continuing Education


About our courses

Archaeology is the study of the past through the traces or material remains which survive into the present. Studying with Cambridge ICE will help you develop your own archaeological expertise through the analysis of religious and ritual beliefs, death and daily life of past peoples by examining what they left behind.

We offer a broad range of short and part-time archaeology courses, for newcomers to the subject and for those who have studied archaeology before.

View our full range of Archaeology courses

Part-time qualifications in Archaeology

Undergraduate Certificates

We offer two Certificate in Archaeology courses at ICE: Certificate I and Certificate II. These normally run in alternate years, and can be studied independently of each other, and in any order.

Certificate courses are taught at FHEQ Level 4, equivalent to first-year undergraduate level. The courses are open to all, and no prior knowledge or qualifications are required.

Undergraduate Certificate in Archaeology I (2015/16) introduces the practice, methods, theories and key sources used by archaeologists. It provides an excellent grounding in British archaeology, with units on ‘Prehistoric peoples’ and ‘Historic peoples’.

Undergraduate Certificate in Archaeology II (2017/18), meanwhile, offers a solid introduction to the great civilisations of the ancient world. You will learn about the archaeology of ancient Egypt; the Mediterranean world of the Romans, Greeks and Etruscans; and the civilisations of Mesopotamia, the Levant, and Mesoamerica, through studying key case studies of sites and monuments in the landscape.

We also offer Certificate courses in Historic Environment and in the Study of Early Medieval and Medieval England.

Undergraduate Certificate in Historic Environment I: Landscape History and Archaeology (2017/18) offers an exciting interdisciplinary approach to the history of the landscape. The three units together provide an introduction to the development of the historic environment from prehistory to the modern period using a range of accessible sources – the earthworks and ecology of the landscape itself, documents, maps, archaeology and architecture – and provide students with straightforward skills to begin to decipher the landscape for themselves.

Undergraduate Certificate in the Study of Early Medieval England (2017/18) examines the initially sparse and later more plentiful archaeological, documentary, art and architectural evidence for the origins and development of Anglo-Saxon England between the 5th and the 11th centuries.

Undergraduate Certificate in the Study of Medieval England (2016/17) uses surviving medieval documents, buildings, landscapes and artefacts to address big questions about medieval England, with units on political culture, landscape archaeology, and art and architecture.

Undergraduate Diplomas

At Diploma level you can choose from three independent, complementary pathways. Diplomas I, II and III run in successive years, depending on demand and tutor availability.

The three Diploma courses can be taken in any order and in any combination, and are complementary to Certificates I and II. They are taught at FHEQ Level 5, equivalent to second-year undergraduate level. They are open entry, meaning that you can begin your study of archaeology at Diploma level, although background knowledge at Certificate level is recommended.

Undergraduate Diploma in Archaeology I (2016/17) includes units on osteoarchaeology and palaeopathology, prehistoric archaeology, and historic or classical archaeology. In 2016/17, the prehistoric and historic units are on Neolithic Britain and the archaeology of Latin America respectively.

Undergraduate Diploma in Archaeology II (2015/16) deals with the history and theory of archaeology, 20th-century conflict archaeology, and archaeology and heritage.

Undergraduate Diploma in Archaeology III (2017/18) will appeal to anyone wishing to gain experience in practical, hands-on archaeology. You will be given insight into a wide range of archaeological techniques ranging from the study of past environments to approaches for interpreting artefacts. This is coupled with excavation and survey in the final term, allowing you to put the knowledge into context.

Bursaries and student loans available

If you are new to higher education, you could be eligible for a bursary award. You will also be able to pay your fees in instalments, and you may also have access to part-time student loans.

How to apply for bursaries and loans

Archaeology tutors

Dr Gillian Carr

Gilly Carr is a University Senior Lecturer and ICE’s Academic Director in Archaeology. She is also the Fellow and Director of Studies in Archaeology and Anthropology at St Catharine’s College. Her main research areas are conflict archaeology, POW archaeology and heritage studies, and she has published widely in this area. She currently carries out fieldwork in the Channel Islands.

About our tutors

Archaeology courses at ICE are taught by tutors whose work spans a wide range of areas. Our current tutors’ interests include (to take a few examples) Neolithic landscapes, the personal histories of Cambridge archaeologists, ancient Egyptian religion, forensic archaeology, post-conflict heritage, the indigenous peoples of Mexico and Guatemala, and Etruscan landscapes.

What our students say

If you're thinking of applying but aren't sure what to expect, why not read what some of our recent students have to say about their experience of studying here?

Read what our students say

Find out more

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