Boston University is a leading center for the study of archaeology and the only university in the United States with a separate, fully constituted, Department of Archaeology. We offer students a splendid opportunity to work closely with faculty in field study, in the laboratory, and in the classroom, developing professional expertise on an undergraduate level. We offer a major and minor in Archaeology as well as a combined BA/MA in Archaeology. While Boston University is an enormous institution with vast resources, the Department of Archaeology is a compact entity in which undergraduate majors, archaeology graduate students, and faculty interact with each other, formally and informally, on a daily basis.
For more information, contact our Director of Undergraduate Studies, Professor Ricardo Elia.
Resources in Archaeology at Boston University
The administrative offices of the Archaeological Institute of America and the American Schools of Oriental Research sponsor centers and projects all over the world, the International Center for East Asian Archaeology, sponsor centers and projects in East Asia, Central Asia, and Southeast Asia. The centers are located on campus. A wide variety of professional journals and publications, including Geoarchaeology, the Journal of Field Archaeology, and the Journal of East Asian Archaeology, are edited by members of the faculty. A major asset of our program is the city of Boston itself. With its many museums of art, science, anthropology, and other specialties; its many major and specialized libraries, and with its vast wealth of historical sites and landmarks, the city and its environs expose students to sophisticated and exciting work in many fields. Various consortia make it possible for students to take advantage of the collective resources of numerous institutions of higher learning in the metropolitan area.
The Boston University Archaeology Society, is organized by undergraduate concentrators and offers many opportunities for students to socialize, meet visiting scholars, and learn about fieldwork opportunities. The club has regular meetings and is open to all students.
An undergraduate degree in archaeology is preparation for continued study or professional development in almost any field. If you are interested in a career in archaeology itself, either in research, higher education, museum work, or cultural resource management, you will need an advanced degree. Your undergraduate degree from Boston University will put you in a competitive position to continue in the field. If you decide to pursue another career, the broad range of studies you will cover as an undergraduate represents excellent preparation for a career in law, business, medicine, education, or most other professions. Archaeology fascinates almost everyone, but only a few individuals are trained in it. Archaeologists attract considerable interest from employers in areas like publishing, government service, management, and foreign service who are looking for diversity in skills and breadth of knowledge in their employees. Your strength will lie in your broad training in the liberal arts.
Summary of Requirements for an Undergraduate Major in Archaeology
Majors in Archaeology must complete 12 4-credit courses: nine in archaeology, two in anthropology, and one in statistics. Required archaeology courses include CAS AR 101 Introduction to Archaeology, AR 307 Archaeological Science, AR 450 Methods and Theory in Archaeology, and AR 503 Archaeological Field Methods. (AR 503 may also be satisfied by an outside field school with advance approval; see the Archaeology Field School Policy). Majors must also choose one topical, one technical, and one area course; and must choose two additional archaeology courses in consultation with the advisor. Required related courses for the major include one course in statistics (either CAS MA 115 or MA 213), CAS AN 101 Introduction to Cultural Anthropology, and one additional CAS AN course.
Summary of Requirements for an Undergraduate Minor in Archaeology
Students with majors in other programs may earn a minor in Archaeology by completing the following 4-credit courses with a grade of C or better: CAS AR 101 Introduction to Archaeology, CAS AR 307 Archaeological Science, and four additional archaeology courses, of which no more than one can be at the 100 level, and one must be at the 400–500 level.