Objectives and competences
The master's degree in Advanced Studies in Archaeology of the University of Barcelona offers advanced training at the forefront of current archaeological studies, which allow students to approach archaeology from a different perspective, taking advantage of the latest methodological and scientific advances available in the search for answers to archaeological problems.
It is therefore a highly multidisciplinary, cross-cutting master's degree, where in addition to the tools traditionally used in archaeological studies, a whole series of disciplines, methods and techniques from other fields such as geology, geography, anthropology, biology, chemistry or conservation are used. This line of research is what is covered internationally under the umbrella term archaeometry.
With this master's degree, we want to train professionals in archaeological research and practice, as well as in the management and conservation of archaeological heritage. This master's degree also gives access to doctoral studies, to write a thesis. In order to better understand the events of the past, it is essential to know all the available tools that help to understand archaeological records in their full scope, by applying all the available resources to their study. It should be remembered that archaeology is linked to historical heritage that must not only be recovered, but also preserved and interpreted in historical terms.
The Master's Degree in Advanced Studies in Archeology has a highly qualified teaching staff with extensive national and international experience in multidisciplinary archaeological research. This staff guides students in this stage of advanced training through personalized tutorials.
The training plan includes a common pathway, focusing on methods and theories that can be applied to any chronology or theme in archeology, and a specialized pathway, depending on the student's research interests: bioarcheology and paleoenvironment, archeology of materials and technological processes, and registers of structures and territorial sites. The objective is to offer training in applied research, so that each student is able to apply the knowledge acquired to specific practical cases.
Objectives and competences
The main aim of the Master's Degree in Advanced Studies is to train researchers and professionals in the latest scientific techniques for the recovery, analysis, interpretation and process of heritage-ization of the archeological record. The course has two functions: to develop a professional profile within the field of contract archaeology; and to be the starting point for an academic or research pathway that leads to the preparation of a doctoral thesis on Archaeology and a subsequent professional career in the research field.
The master's degree provides the knowledge and tools required to analyse and interpret the archeological record in the field of bioarcheological and paleoenvironmental research into material culture and structures, spaces and territory. Thus, students can join interdisciplinary archeology teams and, at the same time, acquire methods and techniques from other disciplines according to their professional or research interests.
The first part of the training programme is a common pathway that covers methods, techniques and theoretical frameworks that can be applied to all chrono-cultural periods and to various archeological subject areas. The second part is comprised of three specialized pathways that can be selected according to the interests of the student: Bioarchaeology and Paleoenvironmental Studies, Archaeology of Materials and Technological Processes, and the Record of Structures and Territory. The aim is to provide comprehensive training in applied research, which students can then apply to their professional field or research.
- Capacity to predict and monitor the evolution of complex situations by developing new, innovative methods and techniques that are adapted to the scientific, technological or professional environment in which the activity is carried out, prioritizing interdisciplinarity.
- Capacity to select and critically analyse the scientific theory and suitable methods and techniques for forming opinions based on incomplete or limited information, and include, when relevant, reflection on the social or ethical responsibility associated with the proposal made in each case.
- Capacity to know how to interpret the development of the discipline and its association with archeological theory through social disciplines that are related to its historical development.
- Capacity to contextualize historical processes and, at the same time, critically assess the sources and theoretical models, and to use analogy in a critical way to compare specific hypotheses on past societies.
- Capacity to manage information: search, systematic compilation, organization, selection, presentation and knowledge of various technical aspects relating to archeological textual production and its implications in the publishing industrial (specific languages and graphic documentation). Expert knowledge of how to use the opportunities provided by the Internet (databases, bibliographies, specialized journals, etc.).
- Capacity to work in a team and to collaborate in groups in the same and other disciplines, and to organize and plan the process from the compilation and recording of data to the final publication of results.
- Knowledge forming the basis of original thinking in the development or application of ideas, typically in a research context.
- Capacity to apply the acquired knowledge to problem-solving in new or relatively unknown environments within broader (or multidisciplinary) contexts related to the field of studies.
- Capacity to integrate knowledge and tackle the complexity of formulating judgments based on incomplete or limited information, taking due consideration of the social and ethical responsibilities involved in applying knowledge and making judgments.
- Capacity to communicate knowledge and conclusions and the grounds on which they have been reached to specialist and non-specialist audiences in a clear and unambiguous manner.
- Capacity for ongoing self-directed and independent learning.
To understand the impact of the passage of time on changes in social processes, and its bearing on such contemporary issues as human effects on ecosystems, globalization, equality and sustainable development.
- Capacity to promote the work and collaborate in a team.
- Capacity to stimulate the work and interdisciplinary reflection.
- Capacity to formulate proposals for analysing and resolving problems based on the integration of data of a diverse nature.
- Capacity to formulate innovative, creative and enterprising proposals.
- Capacity to promote initiatives that lead to implementation of communication and leadership.
- Capacity to plan research that respects the principles of ethical and professional responsibility.
Capacity to understand the adaptation mechanisms of human societies and their environment, the interrelation between cultures over time, and the ability to project knowledge of these past processes to current reality.
Understanding of spatial relations at different territorial scales, through the relations between nature and society over time.
Capacity to recognize and analyse the artistic and iconographic image and its use in past cultures.
Capacity to communicate through various media all kinds of aspects relating to sociocultural diversity, collective representations, and identities.
Ability to bring together from a multidisciplinary perspective the theoretical approaches and procedures used in areas of the humanities and in the applied social and natural sciences.
Capacity to generate innovative, competitive research proposals, based on a multidisciplinary scientific application.
Capacity to carry out and lead research studies in archaeology, to interpret the results, and put them in a geographic and historic context.
Capacity to develop a critical awareness of the various theoretical proposals.
Capacity to use correctly the methodology and chosen sources of information, and to manage the information obtained to obtain solutions that are consistent with the proposed objectives.
Applicant profile and access requirements
Recommended applicant profile
Students should have a good level of English-language proficiency.
Access requirements and conditions
In accordance with Article 16 of Royal Decree 1393/29 October 2007, students must hold one of the following qualifications to access university master's degree courses:
- An official Spanish degree.
- A degree issued by a higher education institution within the European Higher Education Area framework that authorizes the holder to access university master's degree courses in the country of issue.
- A qualification from outside the framework of the European Higher Education Area. In this case, the qualification should be recognized as equivalent to an official Spanish degree. If it is not recognized, the University of Barcelona shall verify that it corresponds to a level of education that is equivalent to official Spanish degrees and that it authorizes the holder to access university master's degree courses in the country of issue. Admission shall not, in any case, imply that prior qualifications have been recognized as equivalent to a Spanish master's degree and does not confer recognition for any purposes other than that of admission to the master's degree course.
Students must hold one of the following qualifications to be admitted to the master's degree:
- Bachelor's degree in Archaeology.
- Bachelor's degree or pre-EHEA degree in History (in the former course programmes, pre-EHEA degree in Geography and History, Philosophy and Arts).
- Other Pre-EHEA degrees and bachelor's degrees could be considered to grant access to the master's degree. In all cases, acceptance depends on the Selection Committee, which may also require applicants to enrol for the bridging courses that it considers necessary, as explained in the corresponding section.
- First period: 3 February - 16 April 2023.
Notification of resolutions: 30 April.
- Second period: 18 April - 21 June 2023.
Notification of resolutions: 30 June.
- Third period: 5 July - 21 July 2023.
Notification of resolutions: 28 July.
- Fourth period: 1 September 8 September 2023.
Notification of resolutions: before 15 September.
- Pre-enrolment fee: A pre-enrolment fee of 30,21 euros is charged. Students who apply to more than one master's degree must pay the fee for each pre-enrolment request. Pre-enrolment requests cannot be processed until this fee has been paid.Fees will only be refunded if the master's degree in question is suspended.
- Reserved places: A maximum of 5% of the new places of the master's degree are reserved for students who meet the general and specific access requirements and accredit the recognition of a degree of disability equal to or greater than 33%.
- Pre-enrolment application
- Photocopy of degree certificate or equivalent qualification. In case of admission, foreign degrees that require so should be translated and authenticated through diplomatic channels before completing the enrolment.
- Other specific documentation related to the selection criteria
Candidates are assessed on the basis of the following criteria, listed in order of priority:
- Academic record (average grade in the academic record for the pre-EHEA degree or bachelor's degree that provides access to the master's degree): 75%.
- Curricular or professional experience in the area of the master's degree (published papers, participation in conferences, courses, professional activity in the sector, etc.): 25%.
The Selection Committee shall make a decision on the admission and selection of students, according to the criteria described above.
The selection procedure for pre-enrolled students and the announcement of the decision shall be made by the Selection Committee. At the end of the pre-enrolment period, the decision shall be communicated in two stages via an email sent to each of the pre-enrolled students, in which they will be informed if they have been accepted, rejected or are on the waiting list. Candidates may request a review of the Committee's decision up to 10 days after they have received the notification.
As a general rule, at the UB you will be required to enrol online. Remember that you can lose your place if you do not enrol on the day you have been assigned
Subjects and course plans
Distribution of credits
List of subjects
Placements in a company or another type of organization are an integral part of university studies, providing first-hand experience of working methodologies in students' chosen professional fields. They offer invaluable practical experience for the transition into work after graduation.
Placements are supervised by tutors and subject to assessment. They are therefore included in the academic record. There is also an option to complete non-curricular placements of up to 500 hours, which can be extended to 900 hours. For both curricular and non-curricular placements, an educational cooperation agreement is signed between the UB and the company, institution or other organization at which the placement will be carried out.
What can you work on ?
The master's degree in Advanced Studies in Archaeology provides students with comprehensive, up-to-date training in three areas of archaeology: bioarchaeology and paleoenvironmental studies, archaeology of materials and technological processes, and the record of archeological structures and the territory. In each of these areas, students will complete advanced theoretical and methodological training that will prepare them to work professionally or start a solid research career.
The training prepares graduates for a scientific career in close collaboration with members of research teams in the areas of archaeology, prehistory and heritage. Students who are interested in following this path will be provided with opportunities to join research teams and with all the information and support required to obtain research grants that could contribute to the development of a doctoral thesis and the start of a research career. Notably, the Archaeology and Paleontology Research Plan of Catalonia (PIACAT) promotes the training of professionals and the funding of research in the areas covered by the master's degree.
In the professional sphere, advanced training in fields and techniques for which there is high demand in current archeological practice (geoarchaeology, archeobotany, chemical analysis and petrography, microstratigraphy, GIS for recording, photogrammetry and scanning, etc.) provides added value in the archeological training of the student, and in improving competitiveness in the work environment, as knowledge is gained in a wide range of techniques and advanced methods.
In addition, the comprehensive, innovative, multidisciplinary nature of the master's degree is designed to train students in the study, management and dissemination of archeological heritage, as well as the coordination, execution and management of archeological and heritage projects in the public and private arena.
To improve the job opportunities of students in the sector of professional archaeology, seminars and conferences will be held with heads of companies and of the public administration.
Access to the labour market
Data from the university system in Catalonia