If you find yourself fascinated with the idea about how human civilizations came to be, then consider getting a degree in and pursuing a career in the field of Archaeology.
Archaeology focuses on gathering knowledge about humanity’s past by studying the material remains that people have left behind.
Archaeology focuses on the eras before humanity started keeping written records and focuses on artifacts that can be found on the sites of ancient civilizations. By studying artifacts such as pottery vessels and shards, primitive tools, crude metalwork, preserved textiles, structural ruins and even trash and skeletal remains, archaeologist seek to get a clearer picture of past human cultures and an understanding of how present human cultures evolved.
By studying the past, archaeologists can correlate the problems of our ancestors with current human issues such as overpopulation, natural disasters and even the effects of warfare.
List of Current Archaeology Scholarships
B. Phinizy Spalding & Hubert B. Owens Scholarships (For Georgia residents)
Student Conservation Association Internship (Commitment to an internship lasting from 12 weeks to 12 months is required)
Texas Historical Commission Diversity Internship (Need based internship for underrepresented minority groups)
To be an archaeologist, you need to know how to examine, recover, preserve and analyze these artifacts from past human civilizations. You also need to be able to manage and protect archaeological sites.
Many holders of an archaeology degree can find themselves working for universities as well as with governments who are interested in preserving and learning about past cultures. Unlike many others in the academe, academic archaeologists don’t find themselves stuck in a lab or confined to a classroom or office. They are active field researchers, directing excavations, overseeing the analysis and interpretations of the date gathered on site and publishing their finding in scholarly journals as well as popular publications, making the research accessible to the public.
Because of their training in recognizing and preserving artifacts, many archaeology degree holders can also find themselves working for museums, national parks or historical sites. Museums, national parks, and historical sites need people with archaeology degrees to manage their collections of artifacts and to work with members of the public, educating visitors on the historical and cultural importance of collections and sites.
Archaeologists also often find employment with cultural resource management firms which identify, assess and preserve archaeological sites. CRM’s and the archaeologists under their employ ensure that developers and builders near archaeological sites comply with regulations regarding their preservation and protection.
Getting a degree in Archaeology requires you to study history, culture and art as well as methods and theory related to archaeology. Some of the courses you might find yourself taking are those on world cultures, world history, anthropological theory, paleoanthropologist, historical geology, human evolution and earth materials. You also need to develop skills in processing, analysis and computing.
While you are studying archaeology, you will also be taught how to extract and clean artifacts. Students may also be required to become proficient is another language other than your native language. Many serious archaeologists also take up a master’s degree after earning their bachelors degree. Most masters degrees in Archaeology ask the student to specialize in a specific region or time period.
Because of the amount of study necessary to pursue a degree in archaeology, it would be a good idea for perspective archaeology students to look into scholarships and other financial aid programs for their chosen field of study. Universities, governments and archaeological societies offer a number of scholarships, grants and fellowships a year. There are also internships and study abroad programs available for archaeology students that are worth looking into.