NVCC COLLEGE-WIDE COURSE CONTENT SUMMARY
HIS 180 - HISTORICAL ARCHAEOLOGY (3 CR.)

COURSE DESCRIPTION

Introduces both the methods and theories in historical archaeology as practiced in the United States and worldwide.  Includes time and space, field survey, excavation, and archival and laboratory research.  Some field trips to excavation sites.   Lecture 3 hours per week.

GENERAL COURSE PURPOSE

This course is an introduction to both the methods and theories in historical archaeology as practiced in the United States and worldwide. Topics include time and space, field survey, excavation, archival and laboratory research. Some field trips to site excavations.

ENTRY LEVEL COMPETENCIES

General college entrance competencies

COURSE OBJECTIVES

Upon completion, the student should be able to:

    A. understand how the field of historical archaeology has developed during the Modern Period in the United States, with an emphasis on research in the Mid-Atlantic region,

    B. trace the work of archaeologists whose ideas have greatly influenced the current trends in historical archaeology,

    C. recognize site types and theoretical concepts,

    D. gain proficiency in field and laboratory techniques,

    E. conduct basic archival research.

MAJOR TOPICS TO BE INCLUDED
    A. The Past as interpreted through Archaeology
       
      1. Introduction: How can you tell if it is prehistoric or historical?
      2. Who’s who in Historical Archaeology: The famous, the infamous, and the quiet few.
      3. Site Types and thematic concepts: how to be Privy to the purpose of a site.
    B. Field Methods in Historical Archaeology
     
      1. What to do first: the importance of documentary research.
      2. Field excavation techniques: site organization and the archaeologist’s toolkit.
      3. The feature presentation: context of space and time. Can you dig it?
      4. Field Survey Techniques: Recording sites in the field
a. Where am I? The importance of the grid and the use of the transit.
b. Alternatives to Digging


C. Coming in from the field: Lab Techniques
 

1. interpreting artifacts
2. digging burial sites
3. the archaeology of groups
4. interpreting the past
5. the future of historical archaeology
Revised 9/97

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