Degree structure



Students take four core courses, choose two option courses and complete a 15,000 word dissertation. Teaching is carried out over a full academic year, although it is possible to take the course part-time over two years.

Core Courses

All students must take the following:

  • Dental Anthropology (ARCLG145, 15 credits, 11 weeks)
  • Methodology and Issues in Bioarchaeology and Palaeoepidemiology (ARCLG146, 15 credits, 11 weeks)
  • Morphology and Palaeopathology of the Human Skeleton (ARCLG143, 15 credits, 11 weeks)
  • Variation and Evolution of the Human Skull (ARCLG144, 15 credits, 11 weeks)

Option Courses

Students choose to follow further options courses up to the value of 30 credits, which may be chosen from the following list or from the wider range of Masters course options available at the UCL Institute of Archaeology (subject to the approval of the degree co-ordinator). Please note that some core courses are normally only available to those enrolled for the degree in question. If you wish to take a core course from another degree as an option certain restrictions may apply. Please consult the relevant course co-ordinator before making your options choice.

  • Anthropological and Archaeological Genetics (ARCLG213/ANTHGH07, 15 credits, 11 weeks)
  • Archaeology of Early Modern Humans (ARCL271, 15 credits, 11 weeks)
  • Forensic Anthropology (ARCLG151, 15 credits, 11 weeks)
  • Funerary Archaeology (ARCLG281, 15 credits, 11 weeks)
  • Human Evolution (15 credits, 11 weeks, by arrangement with the Department of Anthropology)
  • Palaeoanthropology (15 credits, 11 weeks, by arrangement with the Department of Anthropology)
  • Zooarchaeology in Practice (ARCLG184, 15 credits, 11 weeks)


(90 credits)- All students undertake an independent research project and write a dissertation (15,000 words) over a period of about 4 months. Students are allocated a Supervisor to provide guidance during the dissertation research.

Examples of past topics include:

  • degenerative joint disease of the cervical spine in population groups from Sudan
  • non-metric osteological traits (e.g. mandibular tori) and their relevance for bioarchaeology
  • a study of migration patterns in Roman Britain using multivariate cranial analysis
  • the epidemiology of gout in eighteenth-century London
  • osteopenia and osteoporosis in archaeological material
  • the study of tooth development such as molar crown formation and its archaeological implications
  • the osteological evidence for the mercury treatment of syphilis in 17th to 19th century London

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