Discovering the Past with Molecular Science (ARC2130)

15 credits

This module focuses on the application of key scientific techniques in archaeological research, including the use of stable and radioactive isotopes, residue analysis and archaeogenetics. During the past 30 years these cutting edge techniques have transformed our understanding of the past, particularly in areas of dating, climate reconstruction, and diet & migration, and now constitute an essential part of the toolkit available to archaeologists for researching the past. Assuming no prior knowledge, this module aims to provide students with a solid foundational knowledge of the specific techniques and an understanding of their applications in archaeological research. Case study examples from a wide range of time periods and geographic locations will be used to illustrate the range of questions these techniques can be used to address.