Study Planner Information

What will I study?

Study in the first year of the BSc will provide a broad science foundation, with the core courses in archaeological science providing the core theory and practical skills underpinning the discipline providing the prerequisite knowledge required to progress into second year. In second year, students who are interested in majoring in Archaeological Science will begin to focus their course selection in one of the key research strengths practiced by archaeologists at UQ. The third year courses round off the training in archaeology with courses that develop advanced skills and link together across the sub-fields of the discipline.

Students may select courses from one of the following areas in the Archaeological Science major, or may develop their own focus within the major (it is recommended to discuss these with your Major Convenor):

  • Archaeobotany and Zooarchaeology
  • Artifact Analysis
  • Geoarchaeology
  • Human Evolution
  • Human Osteology and Palaeopathology

Archaeological Science is also available as an extended major.

Year 1 Study Planner

What do the different requirements mean?

  • Compulsory for program – all students must complete this course
  • Prerequisite for major – course required for this major
  • Recommended – other science course which complements the major, but can be substituted for an elective
  • Elective - choose a Level 1 course that interests you
Year 1-Semester 1
Course Code & Title Requirements
ARCA1000 Discovering Archaeology1 Prerequisite for major
ERTH1000 Planet Earth: The Big Picture1 Recommended
BIOL1020 Genes, Cells & Evolution Recommended
SCIE1000 Theory & Practice in Science Recommended

1. Course is available in both semester 1 and 2.

Year 1-Semester 2
Course Code & Title Requirements
STAT1201 Analysis of Scientific Data Compulsory for program
ARCS1001 Doing Archaeology Prerequisite for major
GEOS1100 Environment & Society1 Recommended
BIOL1040 Cells to Organisms Recommended

1. Course is available in both semester 1 and 2.

Year 2 to 3 Study Planner

The following are suggested study plans for this major and should be used as a guide to planning your program. Please refer to the course list to ensure you complete the major requirements.

What do the different columns mean?

  • Sem - Semester
  • Compulsory courses – compulsory for the major.
  • Key courses – electives from the major's course list.
  • Recommended courses – complements the major.
Year 2
Sem Compulsory Courses
Complete all courses
Key Courses
Choose at least #4 from:
Recommended Courses
1 ARCA2020 Archaeology of Australasia

ARCS2000 Science in Archaeology
ARCA2118 Cultural Heritage Management

ARCS2003 Forensics: The Archaeology of Death & Crime Scenes

ARCS2060 Archaeology Field School 1

ERTH2003 Sedimentary Petrology & Stratigraphy

ERTH2005 Mineralogy

GEOM2001 Geographical Information Systems

GEOS2100 Environmental Systems
Choose courses from the BSc course list
2 ARCS2168 Human Evolution 1 ARCA2025 Archaeology of the Pacific Islands

ARCS2010 Ancient Technologies 2

ARCS2011 Lithic Analysis 2

ARCS2050 Historical Archaeology

BIOL2201 Evolution

ERTH2002 Palaeobiology

GEOS2103 Biogeography & Geomorphology
Choose courses from the BSc course list
Year 3
Sem Compulsory Courses
Complete all courses
Key Courses
Choose at least #6 from:
Recommended Courses
1 ARCA3100 Critical Studies in World Prehistory ARCA3000 Predicting the Past

ARCS3001 Advanced Research in Archaeology

ARCS3020 Animals and Archaeology 2

BIOL3209 Organism Diversity and Evolution

CONS3017 Landscape Ecology

ERTH3103 Sedimentary Environments

ERTH3205 Geochemistry and Geochronology 2

PSYC3262 Evolutionary Approaches to Human Behaviour
Choose courses from the BSc course list
2 ARCS3010 Field Archaeology

GEOS3107 Plants, People and the Environment
  Choose courses from the BSc course list

1.Semester offering subject to change
2. This course is offered every second year.


Careers in Archaeological Science

Archaeological science develops a wide range of research, observation, analytical and critical thinking skills in its graduates which allow participation in the heritage sector but are also more widely applicable in a number of work environments. Australia has one of the largest and best remunerated archaeological professional communities in the world and its members work widely across industry and the public sector, often in cultural heritage industries. Authoritative information on the structure of Australian archaeology be found in recent survey results (Ulm et al. 2013. A Working Profile: The Changing Face of Professional Archaeology in Australia. Australian Archaeology 76, 34-43 (

Commercial consulting: Most archaeological practitioners work for or run commercial cultural heritage consultancy services evaluating threats via development to cultural heritage assets (sites, landscapes etc) and conducting archaeological survey and excavation to mitigate those threats. Most consulting work is commissioned by large developers, including mining and construction companies, as well as government as part of infrastructure projects.

University teaching and research: Archaeology is a strong academic discipline in Australia and globally, with universities employing archaeologists as lecturers and research fellows. University careers require the development of strong research track records (publication, grant acquisition etc) beginning with, in the Australian system, Honours and PhD research degrees. The university sector is international and Australian-trained researchers work on projects and in institutions around the world. Jobs include permanent and contract lectureships and post-doctoral fellowships, which are usually obtained via competitive application.

Government: Archaeologists work in government departments developing public policy, regulating industry and as advisers to decision makers concerning archaeology and heritage issues. Government jobs require a sound knowledge of the legal and ethical basis of the profession, as well as methodological skills.

Museums: Archaeologists work in museums globally as research and curatorial staff managing and studying museum collections. Archaeological science is also a key skill set for material conservation work.

Forensic science: Archaeologists work commonly in forensic science as government employees or as consultants.

Australian archaeologists commonly work across sectors of the profession (e.g. working in university but undertaking heritage consulting) and there is a close link between those sectors. It is, therefore,  recommended that students gain knowledge of technical/methodological approaches, research foci and professional requirements during their degrees. Students who wish to develop an archaeological career should read the national benchmark for teaching in archaeology: By Degrees (, which specifies which skills and areas of knowledge are required for professional practice.

Many BSc graduates also enter into further research-based studies in Honours, Masters and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) programs.



Starting at UQ

Enrolment guide website.

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Important dates

Academic calendar for all your study dates.

First Years - St Lucia

First Year Guide 2017 for St Lucia Students

First Years - Gatton

First Year Guide 2017 for Gatton Students

First Years - Gatton (External)

First Year Guide 2017 for External Gatton Students