Department of Archaeology

Field work and field trips

All archaeology undergraduates take part in field work and field trips as part of their degree.

These practical sessions give you the opportunities to:

  • gain hands-on experience in surveying and excavation
  • see finds in context
  • visit sites that you have discussed in class
  • get a 'behind the scenes' look at projects, museums, and other institutions.

There are also numerous opportunities to increase your experience and skills through volunteering.

Excavating at the Roman town of Venta Icenorum (Norfolk)

The world is your oyster if you come to Nottingham because the training is so good and it's such a respected university that they're happy to take students on outside digs.

 Hillery Harrison (BA Archaeology)


Field work

Field work is a fundamental and exciting part of archaeology. It is where much of our primary information about the past comes from, and it is important to learn about its advantages and limitations.

The field work must be at an approved site - either run by department staff or another organisation (subject to approval).

In recent years students have taken part in excavations in Crete and numerous projects in the UK. 


  • Single honours - 20 days (which can include up to 10 days of museum training or similar professional experience).
  • Joint honours - 10 days (which can include up to five days in a museum or similar environment).


Usually carried out during the summer vacation.

Field trips

Recent trips have included a weekend at Hadrian’s Wall, and tours of the Prehistoric Peak District and the historic cities of Lincoln, York and Newark.

We are currently expanding our field trip provision and hope to be visiting many more places from 2017-18 onwards.


Some excavations are free but may require travel expenses. For example, for overseas excavations you may need to pay for your own flights, while others will require a training fee.

You can claim back a proportion of your costs from the department.

For example, travel and subsistence for fieldwork are subsidised by the department up to £20 per day.





Many of our students gain valuable experience through volunteer work.

Professional archaeology contractors

Some professional archaeology firms, such as the locally based Trent and Peak Archaeology, offer opportunities to get valuable practical archaeology experience.

Museum of Archaeology

The University has its own Museum of Archaeology that runs a wide-ranging outreach programme in the local community that students can get involved in.

Community outreach

There are numerous opportunities to work with schools and community archaeology groups both locally and further afield. Recent projects have included:

Community outreach

Case study: Revolutionising our understanding of Southwell

Nottingham students played an active part in 'Digging the Peculiar': the Southwell Archaeology Project.

Department of Archaeology

University of Nottingham
University Park
Nottingham, NG7 2RD

Contact details