Taught course

Archaeological Science

Cardiff University · Cardiff School of History, Archaeology and Religion

Entry requirements

Applicants are required to have a minimum 2:1 undergraduate degree in a relevant discipline and may come from either archaeological or related programmes (e.g. conservation, heritage, biology, chemistry, geography) will also be considered. Students with a high 2:2 (57+) will only be considered in exceptional circumstances when they have relevant experience (e.g. field/laboratory work, or excellent marks in relevant modules).

Months of entry


Course content

The MSc Archaeological Science will provide you with a solid grounding in the theory and application of scientific principles and techniques within archaeology. The programme also develops critical, analytical and transferable skills that prepare you for professional, academic and research careers in the exciting and rapidly advancing area of archaeological science or in non-cognate fields.

The programme places the study of the human past at the centre of archaeological science enquiry. This is achieved through a combination of science and self-selected thematic or period-based modules allowing you to situate your scientific training within the archaeological context(s) of your choice. The programme provides a detailed understanding of the foundations of analytical techniques, delivers practical experience in their application and data processing, and the ability to design and communicate research that employs scientific analyses to address archaeological questions. Upon graduation you will have experience of collecting, analysing and reporting on data to publication standard and ideally equipped to launch your career as a practising archaeological scientist.

The MSc Archaeological Science at Cardiff University gives you access to:

  • A flexible and responsive programme that combines training in scientific enquiry, expertise and vocational skills with thematic and period-focused archaeology.
  • Materials, equipment, library resources and funding to undertake meaningful research in partnership with a wide range of key heritage organisations across an international stage.
  • A programme with core strengths in key fields of archaeological science, tailored to launch your career in the discipline or to progress to doctoral research.
  • A department where the science, theory and practice of archaeology and conservation converge to create a unique environment for exploring the human past.
  • Staff with extensive professional experience in researching, promoting, publishing, and integrating archaeological science across academic and commercial archaeology and the wider heritage sector.
  • An energetic team responsible for insights into iconic sites (e.g. Stonehenge, Çatalhöyük), tackling key issues in human history (e.g. hunting, farming, food, and feasts) through the development and application of innovative science (e.g. isotopes, residue analysis, DNA, proteomics)
  • A unique training in science communication at every level - from preparing conference presentations and journal articles, to project reports, press releases and public engagement, our training ensures you can transmit the excitement of scientific enquiry to diverse audiences.
  • Support for your future career ambitions. From further study to science advisors to specialists – our graduates work across the entire spectrum of archaeological science as well as moving into other successful careers.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MSc
    full time
    12 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
    part time
    24 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

+44 (0)29 2087 4929