Bachelor of Arts Degree
Arts and Sciences
Time to Completion
Evening Courses Offered
Distance Learning Courses Offered
Weekend Courses Offered
Contact InformationDepartment Website
481 Braunstein Hall
PO Box 210380
What Is Archaeology ?
Archaeology students become familiar with approaches for studying the archaeological record to make inferences about prehistoric peoples, their societies and environments. Archaeology majors develop research skills that enable them to investigate problems, analyze and evaluate data and infer aspects of ancient human behavior and modes of organization. Students learn about archaeological ethics, the history of archaeology, heritage management and the relevance of archaeology to contemporary society. Archaeology majors pick one of three tracks on which to focus: landscape archaeology, geoarchaeology, and archaeology of social complexity.
Landscape Archaeology refers to the suite of archaeological and geo-spatial approaches, such as survey archaeology, geographic information systems (GIS), global positioning systems (GPS), and remote sensing (terrestrial, airborne, and satellite) for determining the degree to which humans have altered terrain (i.e., the geophysical environment) and vegetation communities for economic, political and ideological reasons.
Geoarchaeology focuses on the application of geo-scientific principles, drawn from geophysics, sedimentology, soil science, and geochronology, for understanding the origins, content variability and the formation history of the archaeological record.
Archaeology of Social Complexity is the systematic and cross-cultural study of the factors (e.g., climatic, demographic, economic) that affect the trajectories of societies representing various organizational structures and sociocultural levels of complexity. The archaeology of social complexity track is intended to serve those students who have an abiding intellectual interest in and curiosity about world archaeology, human history and the diversity of ancient societies.
The focus of the program is on experiential learning that includes field school training, laboratory and museum research, and participation in community historic preservation and archaeological projects. With its emphasis on research and professional training, the program provides undergraduate students with opportunities to directly participate in scholarly research through hands-on activities. The program incorporates information about recent discoveries and current interpretations of archaeological research in order that the student will appreciate the evolving nature of knowledge and theories in the field. The program also integrates core values of citizenship, cultural diversity, cultural heritage appreciation, and historic preservation.
The need for individuals trained by in archaeology is clearly illustrated by the abundance of local, state, and national government institutions and agencies that have staffs of archaeologists, including the USDI Bureau of Land Management, the US Army Corps of Engineers, the USDI National Park Service, the USDA Forest Service, the USDI Fish and Wildlife Service, and the Ohio Department of Transportation, among others. In addition, studies conducted by the Society for American Archaeology indicate that trained archaeologists at the BA level will be needed to fill numerous positions within city, county, state, and federal agencies that will become available as the baby-boom generation enters retirement. Moreover, graduates of the UC archaeology program will have a competitive advantage if they choose to continue their studies in MA programs.
Websites that highlight employment opportunities in archaeology worldwide include the following:
- American Anthropological Association
- American Association of Museums
- American Cultural Resources Association
- Archaeological Institute of America
- The Archaeology and CRM Professionals Resource
- Central States Anthropological Society
- eCultural Resources
- Midwest Archaeological Conference
- Society for American Archaeology
- Society for Historical Archaeology
Students will acquire fundamental theoretical and technical knowledge of archaeological practice as well as the ability to apply the basic principles of archaeology in real-world problem-solving contexts.
Archaeology majors take 22 credits of core courses, including a field school, 12 credits of areal/topical courses, and 20-21 credits in either the Geoarchaeology track, the Landscape Archaeology track, or the Archaeology of Social Complexity track.
A degree in Archaeology is an attractive major to pair with majors or minors in Anthropology, Classics, Geology, Geography, various area studies, or certificate programs (e.g., Historic Preservation, Heritage Studies).
Minors are not available in the Archaeology program. Students interested in a related minor or certificate might consider the following:
- Minor in Anthropology
- Certificate in Heritage Studies
- Certificate in Historical Preservation
This curriculum information is intended as a general information guide for students considering enrollment in this major. These online tools are designed to assist you, but are not a substitute for planning with an academic or faculty advisor.
If you are currently enrolled at UC, you can audit your degree online. If you are considering transferring to this major from another school use the course applicability system (CAS) to see how credits you have earned will apply to this major at UC. For course descriptions by college, click here.
|First Year||Course Number||Credits|
|*English Composition||ENGL 101, 102||6|
|*Quantitative Reasoning (QR)||see checklist||9|
|*Foreign Language||see checklist||9-15|
|Introduction to Archaeology||ANTH 107||3|
|World Prehistory||ANTH 108||3|
|*Social Sciences (SS)||see offerings||9|
|Free electives (recommended to count in a minor or other program)||see options||0-6|
|Total for first year||45|
|Second Year||Course Number||Credits|
|*Intermediate Composition||ENGL 289||3|
|*Foreign Language (if necessary)||see checklist||0-9|
|Elective Core Courses||see major checklist||6|
|Area/Topical Courses||see major checklist||12|
|*Historical Perspectives (HP)||see offerings||9|
|*Humanities (HU)||see offerings||3|
|*Literature (LT)||see offerings||3|
|Free electives (recommended to count in a minor or other program)||see options||0-9|
|Total for second year||45|
|Third & Fourth Years||Course Number||Credits|
|Field Research Course||see major checklist||6|
|Archaeology Track Courses||see major checklist||20-21|
|Archaeological Theory (Capstone Seminar)||ANTH 696||4|
|*Natural Sciences (NS)||see offerings||9|
|*Humanities, Fine Arts, or Literature (HU, FA, or LT)||see offerings||3|
|*Social & Ethical Issues (if not already taken, SE)||see offerings||3|
|Free electives (recommended to count in a minor or other program)||see options||44-45|
|Total for third and fourth years||90|
|Total overall||Minimum 180|
*Needed to fulfill A&S College Core requirements.
Special OpportunitiesThe University of Cincinnati is well positioned to use community resources to enrich students’ experiences. The Cincinnati Art Museum, Cincinnati History Museum, and Cincinnati Museum of Natural History each provides a source of artifacts for detailed study and a site to observe or experience the process of information documentation and specimen curation. The main campus is uniquely situated in close proximity to hundreds of sites of national archaeological significance, such as Turner, Madisonville, and Mariemont, as well as Shawnee Lookout, the first Archaeological District in Ohio to be placed on the National Register of Historic Places, which provides our students with hands-on learning. Finally, the program builds on and strengthens existing relationships with the many local professional archaeologists employed in Cultural Resources Management (CRM) and environmental engineering firms, government agencies, historic preservation programs, and museums that can provide opportunities for our students.
Students in McMicken College of Arts and Sciences enjoy many benefits afforded through study at a research-intensive institution ranked among the nation's top 25 public research universities. UC's urban, Tri-state location offers exciting opportunities for global education, research and service learning, while its student-centered focus includes an 11:1 student-faculty ratio, a nationally recognized Center for Exploratory Studies and a highly successful First Year Experience program that teaches critical skills for first-year students and provides connections with important campus resources.
The University of Cincinnati Center for Field Studies (UCCFS) is an off-campus resource located on 17.6 acres of South Shaker Farm in Miami Whitewater Forest, Hamilton County, Ohio. It is connected administratively to the McMicken College of Arts and Sciences with the direct involvement of the departments of anthropology, biological sciences, geography, geology, and environmental studies. Designed to serve the Greater Cincinnati region, the UCCFS provides a base of operations for on-site and regional field research, a protected area for long-term environmental research, and a training center for interdisciplinary research and education activities
Admission criteria for this program vary based on the relative strength of test scores, class rank and GPA. Please see the Freshman Class Profile for this major in the Quick Facts sidebar on this page for the range of academic credentials typically accepted into this program. Test scores in the lower range may be acceptable with higher class rank and/or GPA. Freshmen applying to this program should also have completed the following State of Ohio articulation requirements with no more than two units missing:
- English (4 units)*
- College-preparatory mathematics (3 units)*
- Science (2 units)
- Social science (2 units)
- Foreign language (2 units)*
- Additional college-prep subjects (3 units)
*McMicken College of Arts & Sciences does not allow units missing from these areas.
Applicants to A&S whose most recent enrollment was not in any of the UC colleges must apply through the Office of Admissions. Applicants in this category must submit transcripts for all secondary school and college-level work. A cumulative GPA of 2.0 for all college-level work is required for admission consideration. Admission to A&S is generally available for any off-campus applicants who have received an associate degree from an accredited college or university and whose cumulative GPA is 2.0 or higher.
University transfer scholarships are available to those who meet specific requirements and ANY admitted A&S transfer student might qualify for an A&S transfer scholarship. Deadlines and eligibility criteria are online via the previous links.
Changing Major Requirements
Applicants to A&S whose most recent enrollment was as a degree student in one of UC’s other colleges can apply directly to the A&S college office. Admission to A&S is generally available for any on-campus students who have:
- at least a 2.0 GPA in all college-level courses (both at UC and at other institutions),
- successfully completed two quarters of English Composition or its equivalent, and
- gained credit for a college-level mathematics course.
A&S students must meet the college residency requirement of 45.0 hours which begins immediately upon matriculation in the college and consists of courses taught by McMicken College of Arts & Sciences.
To graduate from McMicken College of Arts and Sciences, students must:
- Earn at least 180 credits. This can include transfer credit, AP credit, and free electives, but does not include preparatory coursework. Students who have met all other degree requirements must continue earning credit until the total number of their earned hours comes to at least 180.
- Attain a 2.0 grade point average for all courses taken at the University of Cincinnati.
- Be in good academic standing, that is, not on either academic probation or disciplinary probation or suspension.
- Complete the residency requirement by earning at least 45 credits after matriculating into the college. These minimum 45 credits must be taught within A&S (15), and also must be completed after gaining admission to the college.
- Complete all of the requirements of at least one major (see major requirements above).
- Complete the College Core Requirements.
- Submit an application for graduation to the registrar's office by their posted deadline.
UC operates on a quarter system, with 10-week grading periods beginning in late September, early January, late March and mid-June. While midyear admission is possible, fall quarter is generally the best time to enter the college, since many course sequences begin in that quarter. Applicants to McMicken College of Arts & Sciences who are enrolled or who were previously enrolled as degree-seeking students in A&S or in other UC colleges should apply for admission directly to A&S (in French West, 2nd Floor). All other applicants who wish to earn an undergraduate degree from A&S should apply through the Office of Admissions (3rd Floor, University Pavilion).