Archaeological Science

Study mode:On campus Study type:Full-time Languages: English
Local:$ 16.6k / Academic year(s) Foreign:$ 29.8k / Academic year(s) Deadline: Nov 18, 2021
StudyQA ranking:2285 Duration:1 year

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The MSc in Archaeological Science provides a broad introductory education for those with a first degree in archaeology wishing to apply science-based research methods, or for those with a first degree in a science subject wishing to learn about specifically archaeological issues amenable to scientific methods.

The MSc in Archaeological Science is designed to give a broad but detailed grounding in the theory as well as practical experience in the major applications of science in archaeology. It is intended for archaeologists or scientists who wish to go on to undertake research in archaeological science, or archaeologists who intend to pursue a career in the management of archaeological projects or become policy makers in this area and would like to have a sound understanding of the potential of science to elucidate archaeological problems. The MSc also acts as preliminary training for doctoral research.

The MSc in Archaeological Science is based on the research strengths of the Research Laboratory for Archaeology. The MSc consists of three taught elements taught over two nine-week terms, comprising materials analysis and the study of technological change, molecular bioarchaeology, and principles and practice of scientific dating, plus a five month research project chosen in consultation with the supervisor. The pre-set essay(s) and research project provide opportunity for specialisation within these areas.

Most students study all three archaeological science options, but it is possible to replace one of these with an option from the Master's in Archaeology or the Master's in Classical Archaeology run by the department. Students can also supplement the course by attending teaching in another course in preparation for the extended essay. One option which provides very useful supplementary skills is the 'Practical Archaeobotany' option from the MSt in Archaeology.

Each option has a co-ordinator who will be responsible for arranging your option teaching, while the course director has overall responsibility for your progress, and you will have a supervisor for your individual research project.

Teaching is through a combination of lectures, classes and laboratory sessions requiring regular written work, and is supplemented by a range of graduate seminars. The course benefits from the small size of the cohort (usually about eight, including both MSt and MSc), allowing many opportunities for student participation. Class presentations are also required, providing valuable experience and the opportunity for feedback from your peers.

The archaeological science options are assessed in early May by written examination, plus a 10,000-word extended essay. Options taken from other master's degrees in archaeology are examined by a pair of 5,000 word pre-set essays, and the remaining options in archaeological science require only one 5,000 word pre-set essay. Students submit a 15,000- to 20,000-word dissertation on their research project in mid September.

A viva voce examination may be held, when students' work-books may also be examined, at the discretion of the examiners.

1. Academic ability

Proven and potential academic excellence

Applicants are normally expected to be predicted or have achieved a first-class or strong upper second-class undergraduate degree with honours (or equivalent international qualifications), as a minimum, in archaeology or science.

For applicants with a degree from the USA, the minimum GPA sought is 3.5 out of 4.0.

However, entrance is very competitive and most successful applicants have a GPA of 3.7 or above, a first-class degree or the equivalent.

Substantial professional experience may be taken into account.

No Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or GMAT scores are sought.

2. English language requirement

Higher level

Test

Standard level scores

Higher level scores

IELTS Academic 
Institution code: 0713

7.0 Minimum 6.5 per component  7.5  Minimum 7.0 per component 

TOEFL iBT 
Institution code: 0490

100

Minimum component scores:

  • Listening: 22
  • Reading: 24
  • Speaking: 25
  • Writing: 24
110

Minimum component scores:

  • Listening: 22
  • Reading: 24
  • Speaking: 25
  • Writing: 24
Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE) 185

Minimum 176 per component

191 

Minimum 185 per component

Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE) 185

Minimum 176 per component

191 

Minimum 185 per component

3. SUPPORTING DOCUMENTS

  • Three references (letters of recommendation)
  • Official transcript(s) of previous university-level degrees
  • CV/résumé
  • Written work: Two essays of 2,500 words each
  • Personal statement: 300 words
  • Clarendon Scholarships. This unique scheme offers around 140 new, fully-funded scholarships each year to academically outstanding graduate students, as well as providing a lively and stimulating community of scholars.
  • Hill Foundation Scholarships. The Hill Foundation Scholarships fund Russian students to study for full-time graduate courses in any subject at Oxford. The Hill Foundation is a charity which aims to create a community of Oxford scholars and alumni who will work to improve Russian life and culture.The scholarship will cover 100% of University and college fees and a grant for living costs (of at least £14,296). Awards are made for the full duration of your fee liability for the agreed course.
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