An Assortment of Archaeological Subjects: Ceramics, Aerial Photography etc

Ref: C3671207

The course will explore the use of air photography in archaeology; its developments, modern techniques (including LIDAR), results and their interpretation; types of marks and their causes; what we can learn. Secondly, we shall examine Earth history, its structure, the materials of which it is made, and the processes by which it operates.

Course aim

To introduce students to: a) air photography as used in archaeology; b) basic earth science.

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • No skills or experience needed
  • This course is suitable for beginners and improvers
  • All are welcome. Please bring an enquiring mind.

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • Describe the processes that create crop marks.
  • List the types of crop and soil marks -ve and +ve
  • Explain the structure of the Earth.
  • Outline the concept of plate tectonics.
  • Show the evidence for Continental Drift.

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you and the group to be actively involved in your learning
  • Slide-illustrated lecture presentations in a friendly and supportive atmosphere, with class discussion and participation encouraged.

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • A range of informal activities will be used by the tutor to see what you are learning which may include quizzes, question and answer, small projects and discussion
  • Tutor-led Q&A sessions and class discussion will allow participants to assess their progress.

What else do I need to know?

  • Nothing else is needed
  • Recommended reading: continued below. 1) History From the Air. Muir, R. 1987. Mermaid Press, London. 2) Air Photo Interpretation for Archaeologists. Wilson, D.R. 2000. Tempus, Stroud.

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • No pre reading is required but research on the subject on the internet or in the library may be helpful
  • 3) A History of Aerial Photography and Archaeology. Barber, M. 2011. English Heritage, Swindon. 4) The Geology of Britain: an Introduction. Toghill, P. 2006. Crowood Press, Marlborough.

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course
  • Progress to a course with another provider
  • Become involved with the WEA in a range of voluntary work and other activities including campaigning as a WEA member
  • Become involved as a volunteer for a WEA partner or another organisation
  • Travel and museum visits, including archives which contain air photo coverage.

Download full Course information sheet

An Assortment of Archaeological Subjects: Ceramics, Aerial Photography etc


You can if you meet all of the following requirements:

  • are paying the standard fee or are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • are paying with a credit/debit card or are not paying a fee because of a qualifying benefit
  • have a valid email address
  • have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2017
  • have read and accept the standard terms and conditions
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