An exploration of the long- and short-term processes that shape collective memory and our understanding of heritage is offered across our core modules. In addition, the programme gives access to a wide range of core and elective courses offered across the Humanities faculties at both the University of Amsterdam and the Free University Amsterdam, while individual choice modules, such as research tutorials or internships, enable you to explore your own interests. In this way, you have the flexibility to tailor the programme to your own interests.
A variety of courses focusing on archaeology and material culture teaches you about the theory and practice of archaeology from various regions and periods, ranging from the archaeology of ancient civilisations to the early modern world. Participation in archaeological fieldwork is just one of the possibilities, and we have several fieldwork projects in the Netherlands and the Mediterranean region running each year that welcome our students without additional fees. The programme gives access to a wide range of core and elective courses offered across the Humanities faculties at both the University of Amsterdam and the Free University Amsterdam (VU).
The Research Master's in Archaeology and Heritage comprises 120 ECTS credits.
Matter, Materiality and Material CulturePeriod 1Period 212
This course offers in-depth training in material culture theory, whilst practice will help you explore and publicly present the ways in which these theories play a role in archaeology and heritage.
Unheard Voices: Archaeology and Heritage as Multivocal DisciplinesPeriod 16
This course offers a social critique on the fields of archaeology and heritage as they are practiced in academia. Current debates on the contestation of the pasts and their historical roots are considered, and new perspectives on specific cases are explored, as well as the possibilities and desirability to redirect the field(s).
Archaeology, Museums and the PublicPeriod 26
In this course, you will engage actively with the collections of UvA’s Allard Pierson Museum in order to better understand the history of collecting and the creation of museum narratives. This course brings the opportunity for you to collaborate with students from Museum Studies and other related disciplines.
Making Places: Landscape, Memory and HeritagePeriod 4Period 512
In this course, a wide spatial perspective is taken on archaeology and heritage. Current theories and research methodologies from a range of disciplines are used to explore how space and place are fields of contestation and meaning-making.
Restricted-choice electives: individual modulesPeriod 3Period 4Period 5Period 624
Archaeology and MemoryPeriod 16
This module explores how memory has been used by archaeologists to explore monuments, material culture, and the legacies of difficult and contested pasts. In our readings and case studies we will investigate evidence for the making of the past in the past, as well as critically assessing the ways in which contemporary archaeological work contributes to the creation of present and future pasts.
Digitization of the Past and PresentPeriod 16
This course covers the theoretical and practical basis of various digital approaches used in Archaeology, as well as their position within the discipline and the broader field of Heritage Studies. You will learn to become a ‘critical consumer’ of digital approaches in research practice as well as in science communication.
Restricted-choice electives: individual modulesPeriod 2Period 318
Research Master's Thesis ArchaeologyPeriod 4Period 5Period 630
You may choose electives from a range of Master’s programmes offered by ACASA, as well as the Heritage Studies, Museum Studies and Ancient Studies programmes offered by the Faculty of Humanities at the UvA or VU.
Tutorial and internships
Individual tutorials form an important component of the Research Master's programme in Archaeology and Heritage. They typically comprise a research assignment, and include material research at museums and excavations. You will have the opportunity to participate in archaeological fieldwork projects directed by staff in north-western Europe and the Mediterranean. You can also do an internship at an archaeological or heritage institution in order to familiarise yourself with the professional practice in your chosen specialisation.
National Research School
You can further specialise by choosing courses or study units within one of the Dutch National Research Schools, which will bring you into contact with a wider network of research practice within your chosen specialisation. This includes the Research School of Archaeology (ARCHON), National Research School in Classical Studies (OIKOS), Dutch Postgraduate School for Art History (OSK) and the Netherlands School for Cultural History (Huizinga Institute) or Cultural Analysis (NICA), among others.
The Master's thesis reports on research carried out under the supervision of an ACASA staff member involved in the programme. The subject of the thesis must be proposed by the student, and then mutually agreed upon by the student and the academic supervisor.
How do I tailor the programme to my interests?
You have 30 ECTS of Individual modules (electives, tutorials and internships) to allow you to learn research or professional skills that focus on a region, period or specialisation of your choice.
Can I do an internship abroad?
Yes, internship opportunities in the Netherlands and beyond can form part of your tailor-made programme. You work with the Programme Coordinator to create a suitable work plan and schedule for either a 6 or 12 ECTS internship, depending on the duration and nature of the work.
Can I join an archaeological fieldwork project?
Yes, there are a number of fieldwork projects each year in the Mediterranean and The Netherlands that you can join, either to gain or increase your fieldwork experience, or to undertake your own research activities as part of an Individual Module.
What is the ratio of Dutch and International students?
This programme attracts participants from both The Netherlands and abroad, with International students often forming over half of the programme cohort.
How does the programme prepare me for further study?
Within your core modules, you will develop the following skills that are critical for further study: advanced academic writing; project design, planning and funding proposals; and research communication strategies, including conference organisation and public presentations.
The Research Master's in Archaeology and Heritage is an accredited degree programme of Archaeology. After successful completion of this programme, you will receive a legally accredited Master’s degree in Archaeology and the title Master of Arts (MA).