Archaeology attempts a broad-based analysis of material culture as a means of identifying patterns of change and continuity in such areas as economy, sociocultural complexity, and ideology. Other areas of interest include reconstructing historical connections between extinct societies. All of these issues may be addressed from a variety of theoretical perspectives, and the graduate training program provides a thorough grounding in contemporary paradigms in archaeology. The program also emphasizes acquisition of methodological expertise that enables the student to apply these perspectives to specific archaeological problems. Expanded opportunities for acquiring technical and methodological skills are provided by the Archaeological Analytical Research Facility which is a laboratory complex devoted to the analysis of archaeological materials, with specific emphasis on zooarchaeology and vertebrate taphonomy, and capabilities in thin-sectioning and petrographic analyses. The Public Archaeology Facility (PAF) is a university research center associated with the department. PAF's primary goal is to train archaeologists to be field and research specialists within a Cultural Resource Management framework, including community outreach and consultation with indigenous groups. Students receive intensive mentoring and guidance in legal, administrative, consultation, and research management aspects of archaeological projects. Collections generated by contracts in the northeastern US provide students with direct access to data-based research that is frequently used for thesis and dissertation material.
Graduate students planning research in archaeology should register for ANTH 551 (Strategies in Archaeology) during their first semester of studies, followed by ANTH 592 (Proposal Writing) in their third semester. Doctoral students must also take courses in each of the following tracks:
Area: At least two seminars in area studies (ANTH 576).
Method: At least two seminars in Methods (e.g., ANTH 540, 583, 585, 586)
Theory: At least one seminar in archaeological theory (ANTH 552, 554)
Last Updated: 11/9/12