Academic Guidance What Sort of Classes Should I Take to Get A Master's Degree in Archaeology?

Jun 2015
122
United States
#1
I will be starting college soon, and the pressure is on to find out what I need to achieve. I would like to minor with a Bachelor's degree in Museum Studies, and Major with a Master's degree in Archaeology (focus on classical- mainly Rome/Roman Army). What sort of classes should I take?
(PS- I've already exhausted my hs history courses- I will be taking AP World and Mythology come August, as well as DE Humanities and Psych. I also have taken languages, if that means anything. Is there anything else I should look into taking before I graduate, in order to get ahead?)
Anything to get ahead- I know the field of archaeology can be ever-shrinking at times, and I really don't want to get stuck in a retail job. (Not that there's anything wrong with that, jus, you know, I want to go farther.)
Any advice is good.
Thank you!
 
Jul 2010
1,374
N/A
#2
Your problem is that a lot of modern universities treat archeology as a science and therefore archeological science degrees are becoming common. There is a number of ways you may go. You can do an Arts degree majoring in archeology. You can do a degree in archeological science which focuses more on the things a modern archeologist may do in the lab or field, or you may add on a masters on top.



You're at the stage where you will get a choice to do a masters, you may choose to even do a masters in archeological studies, or a masters that moves you more toward the science based approach. What you choose to do at this point will depend on which school you choose.


As you should be aware you should look at the school first, and then look at what courses are offered under their degree program. All schools will offer different programs. You need to find the school that has the program that suits you.


The biggest downfall of American Liberal Arts degrees is the freedom of choice (No such "European" school degree has an equivalent of the American Liberal Arts degree with good reason). If you want to be successful in this world with a functional degree then you need a narrowly defined degree and you need to stop being wishy-washy with the programs that you choose. Doing a course in psychology might be entertaining but you need to think about how its beneficial to your degree program overall otherwise you will end up with an undergraduate degree that makes you a master of nothing. The whole point of doing a degree with capstone courses is that you get out something that functions by itself once you have finished so you don't have to waste more time doing two or even three degrees which by the way is now four levels of study with most universities now requiring people with postdoctoral qualifications if they want to work in the academic sphere.


Otherwise... keep going down this pathway where you will have enjoyed what you studied at "college" but you will have a degree that is worth nothing in the real world. The US inherited the “liberal education” pattern from the United Kingdom,(originally). However, it was designed for the education of "privileged" young people from elite families. It was based on a complete and well-organised introduction to human knowledge in art, literature, science, and social life. But, its biggest failing is that. An introduction to human knowledge in art (or in your case language as art), literature, science, and social life, without any intermediate or capstone studies in anything.
 
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Jun 2015
122
United States
#3
Your problem is that a lot of modern universities treat archeology as a science and therefore archeological science degrees are becoming common. There is a number of ways you may go. You can do an Arts degree majoring in archeology. You can do a degree in archeological science which focuses more on the things a modern archeologist may do in the lab or field, or you may add on a masters on top.



You're at the stage where you will get a choice to do a masters, you may choose to even do a masters in archeological studies, or a masters that moves you more toward the science based approach. What you choose to do at this point will depend on which school you choose.


As you should be aware you should look at the school first, and then look at what courses are offered under their degree program. All schools will offer different programs. You need to find the school that has the program that suits you.


The biggest downfall of American Liberal Arts degrees is the freedom of choice (No such "European" school degree has an equivalent of the American Liberal Arts degree with good reason). If you want to be successful in this world with a functional degree then you need a narrowly defined degree and you need to stop being wishy-washy with the programs that you choose. Doing a course in psychology might be entertaining but you need to think about how its beneficial to your degree program overall otherwise you will end up with an undergraduate degree that makes you a master of nothing. The whole point of doing a degree with capstone courses is that you get out something that functions by itself once you have finished so you don't have to waste more time doing two or even three degrees which by the way is now four levels of study with most universities now requiring people with postdoctoral qualifications if they want to work in the academic sphere.


Otherwise... keep going down this pathway where you will have enjoyed what you studied at "college" but you will have a degree that is worth nothing in the real world. The US inherited the “liberal education” pattern from the United Kingdom,(originally). However, it was designed for the education of "privileged" young people from elite families. It was based on a complete and well-organised introduction to human knowledge in art, literature, science, and social life. But, its biggest failing is that. An introduction to human knowledge in art (or in your case language as art), literature, science, and social life, without any intermediate or capstone studies in anything.
That makes sense. I guess I should ignore the advice given to me by guidance counselors and all that, because they were pushing me down the Liberal Arts path. I guess I should have seen that with the AP Art History and all. I guess I just kind of assumed if I wanted to go into the history field as an archaeologist, then I needed to load up on histories.
I'm guessing my best course of action would be to pick something in the more modern archaeological terms and see where I can go from there? Based on what the college provides, of course. I'm not looking for a cushy degree.
Also, if archaeology falls under science these days, should I take something in anthropology, maybe geography, and possibly cultural studies?
 
Jul 2010
1,374
N/A
#4
You can have a history major if you want one. I've got a history major in my undergraduate. I also put a Political Science & International Relations major on top of that and then for whatever reason I ended up with an English literature minor. I finished my honors in culture and society with a thesis in cultural studies relating to the way migrant groups have adapted to living in Australia.


It's a sort of cultural anthropology I guess. That is however what interests me. You will need to find the degree area that best interests yourself. I would suggest a narrowly defined interest area that is relevant to a career pathway. For me at least at the moment that pathway has been as an analyst. There is always work out there for that type of person.


Archeology is interesting, it's also a very hard niche to break into though.
 
Jun 2015
122
United States
#5
You can have a history major if you want one. I've got a history major in my undergraduate. I also put a Political Science & International Relations major on top of that and then for whatever reason I ended up with an English literature minor. I finished my honors in culture and society with a thesis in cultural studies relating to the way migrant groups have adapted to living in Australia.


It's a sort of cultural anthropology I guess. That is however what interests me. You will need to find the degree area that best interests yourself. I would suggest a narrowly defined interest area that is relevant to a career pathway. For me at least at the moment that pathway has been as an analyst. There is always work out there for that type of person.


Archeology is interesting, it's also a very hard niche to break into though.
Alrighty. Thank you so much! I will keep all of this in mind. As long as I don't end up as a teacher, anything in history should be good. :) Thanks again!