MRes Archaeology is an exciting opportunity to develop advanced knowledge and understanding of specific areas of the discipline by following a personalised, individual study pathway, in close collaboration with our staff. This course offers research training for students intending to pursue careers in which an excellent understanding of research methods will be useful. You will further your own intellectual development and enhance your independent research skills by completing a major research project.
It is also ideal preparation for students who possess a sound understanding of the subject and who wish to undertake a PhD in Archaeology. In this sense, an MRes, as a substantial piece of original academic work, might well prove to be a decisive advantage when seeking future funding for doctoral study. It also provides a wide range of highly sought-after skills in research, critical thinking, data analysis, and communication which will provide the foundation for a future career in archaeology and heritage, as well as many other sectors.
This course offers you the flexibility to tailor the content to reflect your personal interests and research topic. You can follow a specialist pathway focusing on a specific period, region or theme, and can combine it with advanced practical training in archaeological techniques and will undertake independent research supervised by a main supervisor and a co-supervisor on a pre-agreed research topic. We have specialists working in Old-World Prehistory, the ancient Mediterranean and the Roman world, and Medieval and Post-Medieval Europe, as well as internationally renowned expertise in bioarchaeology and archaeological materials, and underwater and maritime archaeology.
The MRes Archaeology can be studied over two years on a part-time basis. As teaching is largely undertaken through individual tutorials or small groups, there is a great deal of flexibility to organise your time around existing commitments.
Our teaching draws on the extensive and world-leading research expertise of staff within the Department of Classics and Archaeology. You can choose to specialise in any area in which the department has research and teaching expertise. The MRes is a highly flexible degree, allowing great freedom of choice in topics and allowing you to study advanced scientific and theoretical perspectives across many time periods and regions.
Our areas of teaching and research expertise include:
Our members of staff research and teach in many different fields of Old World prehistory, ranging from human evolution in Africa and Europe, to the development of more complex societies in later prehistory. Members of staff have particular strengths in early hominin palaeoecology, the study of Neolithic to Iron Age societies in the Mediterranean, and Iron Age communities in Atlantic Europe, from Spain to Scotland.
You can study many different aspects of the archaeology of Mediterranean society. We have particular strengths in prehistoric Mediterranean archaeology, from prehistoric Italy (Neolithic to Iron Age), to Bronze Age Greece (Minoan and Mycenaean archaeology) and the Early Iron Age of Greece. Specialists in this field work with landscape archaeology, burials, and material culture. Nottingham is also the world’s centre of excellence for the study of the archaeology and history of Sparta and the Peloponnese, Greece. We also have specialists in the archaeology of the classical Mediterranean and the Roman Empire, and the period of Late Antiquity and the transition to the early medieval world. Students will be able to study a range of different types of archaeological evidence including burials, monuments, landscapes, cities, forts and material culture.
You can study many different aspects of the archaeology of the Roman World, from the Mediterranean world and the City of Rome, to Britain and the North-Western provinces, to the Balkans and the eastern Empire. Our teaching and research ranges from the high point of the Roman Empire in the 1st and 2nd centuries, to the transformation of the late Roman Empire and the period of Late Antiquity. Students studying the City of Rome topic (30 credits) have the opportunity to apply to spend one semester at the British School in Rome.
Medieval and Post-Medieval Archaeology
Nottingham has one of the UK’s largest concentrations of specialists in medieval archaeology. We have members of staff researching and teaching in the periods of both early medieval (Anglo-Saxon and Viking) and later medieval and post-medieval (from the Norman Conquest to the Renaissance), and students can study topics across this range or choose to specialise in one period. We have expertise in the study of landscape and settlement archaeology, the archaeology of standing buildings, and medieval topics in bioarchaeology.
Nottingham is leading the way in developing sophisticated new techniques for underwater archaeology, using advanced digital survey methods on underwater sites. Our research in this field focuses on prehistoric submerged settlements, including the excavation of lake dwellings in Scotland as well as the major Pavlopetri Underwater Archaeology Project (Greece) and the GCRF-funded Rising from the Depths project (Africa).
Social Bioarchaeology – People, Plants and Animals
Our department is a recognised centre of excellence in the innovative study of social bioarchaeology and the interaction of humans, plants and animals in their wider landscape and environmental context. Staff members specialise in palaeoanthropology, zooarchaeology and archaeobotany, across regions and time-periods ranging from the Palaeolithic to Roman to Post-Medieval Europe. You are provided with a practical, methodological and theoretical grounding in bioarchaeology, allowing you to develop core practical and analytical skills to enable you to undertake independent study of environmental evidence for their dissertation, and to pursue a career as a specialist in the field.
You have the opportunity to combine archaeology and science in the investigation of ancient materials and pyrotechnologies. You can study the archaeological, ethnographic and scientific aspects of materials – primarily glass – choosing to specialise in particular methods and techniques or taking a broader comparative approach. To undertake an independent research project in archaeological materials, you will be taught core practical and analytical skills to enable you to undertake primary scientific analysis using a wide range of techniques and approaches.
Visit the Department of Classics and Archaeology website to find out more about the department's research and teaching profile.