ARCL Courses

This page lists all the anthropological archaeology (ARCL) courses offered by the Department of Anthropology. This information is also listed in the UBC Calendar. Not all courses are offered every year. For a complete list of courses in the current term, consult the course schedule. Course content varies depending on the instructor, so consult the list of current course details as you plan your schedule.

2016-2017 ARCL Courses Banner

ARCL: Lower Level Year Courses

Survey of world archaeology, from the emergence of humankind to the beginning of state societies.

The origin and evolution of the human lineage and the emergence of human biological and cultural traits with emphasis on the fossil record before the Pleistocene. Credit will be granted for only one of ARCL 140 or ANTH 225.

Introduces the methods and principles applied in anthropological archaeology and cultural-historical research.

An examination of some momentous discoveries in archaeology that have shaped our knowledge of the ancient world and the history of humanity.

The application of methods from biological anthropology and archaeology to the identification, recovery, and analysis of skeletal remains from crime scenes, mass disasters, and unexplained deaths.

Introductory survey of North American archaeology comparing the ancient cultures from all major regions of Canada and the US.

The archaeology of ancient Mexico, Central and South America, highlighting recent discoveries about the emergence and growth of civilizations such as the Aztecs, Maya, Zapotec, Inca, Chimor and their ancestors.


ARCL: Upper Year Courses (300 and 400 Level)

Current theoretical developments explored through the practice of archaeology. Examples drawn from a range of times and places focusing on emerging technologies, food production, colonial encounters and culture contact, materiality and symbolic systems, social inequality and complexity, and human-environmental interactions.

Prerequisite: ARCL 203.

Intensive training in excavation techniques and interpretation, including mapping procedures, recording, preliminary analysis, and reporting. Students will participate in an excavation for the Summer Session and will use this excavation as a basis for lectures, discussions and reports. Additional Field Trip Fees are charged for this course.

Prerequisite: ARCL 305.

An evaluation of the issues of sustainability and collapse of ecological and social systems through the archaeological study of the past.

Early hunter-gatherer-forager societies, spanning the period from the emergence of the first tool-using hominins to the origins of agriculture.

Archaeological evidence and theories for the origins and spread of settled village life, food production systems, and complex social and political organization: Early Neolithic period through to the appearance of the old world civilizations.

A survey of prehistoric archaeology west of the Rocky Mountains. Reconstruction of prehistoric cultural developments from the earliest migrations up to historical contact.

Survey of the archaeology of East and Southeast Asia, with an emphasis on the beginnings of the economic, social, political, and artistic traditions and systems of the great civilizations, and the conditions in which they arose. Theories of cultural development emphasizing Neolithic and state-level societies will be discussed.

The archaeology of Mexico and Central America with an emphasis on the emergence of economic, social, political, and religious organization. Seminar format discussing recent research and current discoveries.

Origin and development of the hominins; the hominin fossil record, and theories relating to hominin evolution.

Prerequisite: ARCL 140.

A comprehensive survey of primates, with emphasis on evolution, ecology, social organization, social behaviour, and field studies.

Prerequisite: ARCL 140.

Current methods in mapping spatial information in archaeology and related subfields of anthropology.

Prerequisite: ARCL 140.

A survey of methods and techniques in the interpretation of archaeological data; practical experience in processing and analyzing archaeological materials by means of a research project. Students will prepare manuscripts, drawings and photographs for publication and will learn the basics of lithic and faunal analyses.

Prerequisite: ARCL 305.

Analysis of the archaeology of one of the listed areas, including a summary of the literature and examination of specific sites and analytical issues. The area covered will vary according to the instructor's expertise.

Prerequisite: One of ARCL 305, ARCL 318, ARCL 319, ARCL 322.

Analysis of the prehistory of a selected New World area, including a summary of the literature and discussion of relevant problems. The course will provide background for students in North, Central, and South American area studies. Typical offerings include the prehistory of Mesoamerica, the Southwest, North America and the Mayan areas.

Prerequisite: One of ARCL 305, ARCL 321.

A survey of methods, theory, and case-studies in mortuary archaeology. Prerequisite: ARCL 203.

Prerequisite: One of ARCL 305, ARCL 321.

An advanced study of the prehistoric archaeology of coastal and interior Native Peoples. A critical analysis of the archaeological evidence and interpretations of prehistoric cultural developments from the earliest migrations up to historical contact.

Survey of the use of archaeology in the public context and interest, particularly the identification, evaluation, conservation, and management of archaeological resources. Laws and policies, principles, methods, and ethical concerns guiding current practices, public involvement, relationships with indigenous communities, and contemporary issues in cultural resources management.

Prerequisite: ARCL 203.

The archaeological evidence for the change of human diets over time and the methods used to reconstruct past diets.

Analytical and practical skills in locating archaeological sites and data leading to spatial patterns and historical interpretation.

Prerequisite: ARCL 203.