Egyptology MA

  • Programme duration: Full-time: 12 months   Part-time: 24 months
  • Programme start: September 2022
  • Entry requirements: The normal requirement for entry onto a taught programme is a mid 2:1 or equivalent undergraduate degree in a relevant field of study.
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Module details

Students in the MA Egyptology full-time programme take 30 credits of required modules and 30 credits of optional modules in each semester.

The dissertation is completed over the summer period. 

Students with a research interest involving archaeological method and practice or with interests that stretch beyond Pharaonic Egypt, either into contemporary cultures of the Near East or the Mediterranean or into the GraecoRoman period, may choose modules outside the specific discipline of Egyptology, available from the listings of other MA degrees in the department. 

 

 

 

Compulsory modules

Ace MA and MSc Dissertation (ALGY600)
LevelM
Credit level60
SemesterWhole Session
Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
Aims

This module aims to give you the opportunity to produce a lengthy piece of work ( 15000-20000 words *) on a topic of your choice. * Footnotes, bibliography and appendices are included in the word count;

The module dissertation will enhance your abilities in the realms of collection, analysis and interpretation of primary material, and the development of critical response in the use of secondary sources;

The purpose of the MA dissertation is to demonstrate that you can identify an issue or problem, research, assemble and analyse the available evidence, present convincing and coherent arguments on the basis of that evidence, and locate the results within the broader context of modern scholarship.

The dissertation should be based at least in part on primary data or sources, and the choice of topic must take into account the accessibility of such materials.

Learning Outcomes

(LO1) Identify a research-related issue or problem.

(LO2) Design and conduct a scheme of work to explore that issue.

(LO3) Assemble, analyse and appropriately cite both academic literature (references) and primary evidence (sources).

(LO4) Present a coherent and clear set of data and arguments in order to analyse and interpret the data.

(LO5) Use evidence to unfold a continuous and coherent argument that will enable them to make conclusions relating to the problem stated in the introduction of the dissertation.

(S1) Produce a text written and presented to a professional standard

(S2) Communication (oral, written and visual) - Academic writing (including referencing skills)

(S3) Critical thinking and problem solving - Critical analysis

(S4) Time and project management - Project management

Research Skills for Ace M-level Students (ALGY601)
LevelM
Credit level30
SemesterFirst Semester
Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
Aims

This module will provide students with a set of skills that is necessary for the development, structuring and presentation of their dissertation topic (which can be later applied to PhD research) alongside transferable skills (clarity of written expression, critical faculty, advanced level ability to structure and present arguments in a range of media, and project management) applicable to academic and non-academic work environments; The module also aims to develop your abilities to engage with current historiographical and theoretical debates appropriate to MA level in an informed, analytical and critical manner.

Learning Outcomes

(LO1) Show advanced critical understanding of the sources and methodological approaches appropriate to specific research topics.

(LO2) Synthesise arguments and data from published material.

(LO3) Make a critical judgement of the relative strengths and weaknesses of research questions and arguments.

(LO4) Show an awareness of ethical issues in research.

(LO5) Show advanced critical understanding of current historiographical and theoretical debates.

(S1) Critical thinking and problem solving - Evaluation

(S2) Communication (oral, written and visual) - Presentation skills - visual

(S3) Communication (oral, written and visual) - Presentation skills - written

(S4) Time and project management - Personal organisation

(S5) Skills in using technology - Online communications skills

Research Design in Egyptology (ALGY784)
LevelM
Credit level30
SemesterSecond Semester
Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
Aims

This module aims to promote key skills in the design of practical aspects in museum practices in Egyptology;

It will encourage students to develop their ability to (a) prepare and carry through specific practical projects related to the study of Egyptian artefacts (including text) and (b) create themed museum displays of ancient Egyptian material;

Through this module, students will not only develop career skills in the above areas of Egyptology but also learn to apply the basic principles of research design to their coursework and dissertation;

The primary sources will comprise both archaeological and textual data, thus extending students' ability to combine these two types of evidence in assessing and analysing the interconnection between artefacts and society in Egypt during the pharaonic period;

Detailed knowledge of the main Egyptological collections (local and international) and their history, combined with seminar discussions relating to questions of provenance, function, context, and display, will provide a subject-based platform for the consideration of the process of research design in Egyptology.

Learning Outcomes

(LO1) By the end of the module the students will have undertaken detailed, research-oriented study of primary archaeological and textual materials exploring issues of provenance, function, context, and meaning, in such a way as to simultaneously acquire the fundamental skills essential for designing research strategies.

(LO2) By studying a wide variety of museum artefacts, the students will be able to express a contextualised understanding of the material via a variety of means of presentation, including museum displays and exhibitions.

(LO3) Students will have acquired the ability to use a range of traditional and modern Egyptological skills to explain and explore some of the most relevant issues related to the study of the Egyptian material culture.

(LO4) Students will have exercised oral skills through preparation and presentation of topics within class seminars, and team-working skills through giving and receiving detailed criticism of class presentations in seminars.

(S1) Communication (oral, written and visual) - presentation skills – oral

(S2) Communication (oral, written and visual) - presentation skills - written

(S3) Communication (oral, written and visual) - presentation skills - visual

(S4) Communication (oral, written and visual) - academic writing (including referencing skills)

(S5) Time and project management - project management

Optional modules

Issues in Egyptian Settlement Archaeology (ALGY676)
LevelM
Credit level15
SemesterSecond Semester
Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
Aims

This module is designed to promote key skills in the collection, analysis and interpretation of primary material (archaeological and textual) relevant to a reconstruction of the nature and organisation of settlement in ancient Egypt;

It will use detailed case-studies to encourage students to develop their ability to formulate and present independent argument using this archaeological and textual material as data;

It will further encourage the presentation of such argument and analysis in a coherent format as might be appropriate for publication.

Learning Outcomes

(LO1) An understanding of the primary material (archaeological and textual) relevant to a reconstruction of the nature and organisation of settlement in ancient Egypt.

(LO2) An understanding of theoretical approaches which have been applied in the study of settlement archaeology in Egypt.

(LO3) The ability to formulate and present independent argument using this archaeological and textual material as data.

(LO4) The ability to present this argument and analysis in a format as might be suitable for academic publication.

(S1) Communication (oral, written and visual) - presentation skills – oral

(S2) Communication (oral, written and visual) - presentation skills - written

(S3) Critical thinking and problem solving - critical analysis

(S4) Communication (oral, written and visual) - academic writing (including referencing skills)

(S5) Critical thinking and problem solving - evaluation

Social Life in Egypt (ALGY677)
LevelM
Credit level15
SemesterFirst Semester
Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
Aims

To develop critical and communicative skills through focus on the analysis of original primary sources (archaeological, iconographic and textual) relevant to a reconstruction of the social and religious life of pharaonic Egypt;

To develop research agenda for the analysis and description of the reality of cultural differences between different societies, ancient and modern;

To advance writing skills for the presentation of research issues.

Learning Outcomes

(LO1) The student will attain a knowledge of relevant primary data, and theoretical approaches to the study of ancient Egyptian society, appropriate for independent research, and the skills to communicate that knowledge and understanding in clearly constructed writing.

(LO2) The student will develop skills in collecting and ordering primary research data, identification of appropriate research agenda within an extensive knowledge base, and within theoretical frames, presentation of a research paper with well-defined agenda

(LO3) The student will develop an understanding of the processes of building a coherent and critical use of sources towards an independent, evidence-based understanding of ancient society.

(LO4) The student will develop communication of that independence of understanding in a coherent form.

(S1) Improving own learning / performance - reflective practice

(S2) Research skills - all information skills

(S3) Communication (oral, written and visual) - presentation skills - written

(S4) Critical thinking and problem solving - problem identification

(S5) Critical thinking and problem solving - evaluation

(S6) Global citizenship - cultural awareness

(S7) Personal attributes and qualities - initiative

Egyptian Writing I (ALGY707)
LevelM
Credit level15
SemesterFirst Semester
Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
Aims

ALGY707 is designed to promote the acquisition of intermediate skills in the understanding and interpretation of ancient Egyptian texts, with a view to their use as primary data in research projects. Particular emphasis is put on using original ancient Egyptian writings as sources for the study of ancient Egypt and on developing an appreciation of these texts in their social, historical and cultural context. The student will acquire the skills to present a passage of continuous text in accurate transliteration and translation in standard academic format, with commentary and discussion of its significance as a primary document.

Learning Outcomes

(LO1) By the end of the module, you will have improved their reading skills for hieroglyphic texts and learned how to assess/analyse critically and synthesise the specific detail to be found in the primary sources (individual texts) in the light of the more general discussions to be found in the secondary sources (modern writings about ancient Egypt) and vice versa.

(LO2) Skills for reading Ancient Egyptian texts through a programme of text-reading (primary sources) in class, particularly in terms of reading hieroglyphic signs and assessing the grammar of Ancient Egyptian texts to see how they are composed and how the intended meaning is conveyed.

(LO3) Skills for assessing Ancient Egyptian texts in their social, historical and cultural background through a programme of background reading of secondary sources directly relevant to the texts read in class.

(S1) Time and project management - Project management

(S2) Critical thinking and problem solving - Critical analysis

(S3) Improving own learning/performance - Reflective practice

Egyptian Writing II (ALGY708)
LevelM
Credit level15
SemesterSecond Semester
Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
Aims

ALGY708 is designed to promote the acquisition of skills in the understanding and interpretation of ancient Egyptian texts, with a view to their use as primary data in research projects. Particular emphasis is put on using original ancient Egyptian writings as sources for the study of ancient Egypt and on developing an appreciation of these texts in their social, historical and cultural context. Students will acquire the skills to present a passage of continuous text in accurate transliteration and translation in standard academic format, with commentary and discussion of its significance as a primary document.

Learning Outcomes

(LO1) By the end of the module, students will have improved their reading skills for hieroglyphic texts and learned how to assess/analyse critically and synthesise the specific detail to be found in the primary sources in the light of the more general discussions to be found in the secondary sources and vice versa. In particular, you will have the opportunity to develop, apply and demonstrate the following key skills and areas of knowledge.

(LO2) Students will have the opportunity to develop, apply and demonstrate skills for reading Ancient Egyptian texts through a programme of text-reading (primary sources) in class, particularly in terms of reading hieroglyphic signs and assessing the grammar of Ancient Egyptian texts to see how they are composed and how the intended meaning is conveyed.

(LO3) Students will develop skills for accessing Ancient Egyptian texts in their social, historical and cultural background through a programme of background reading of secondary sources directly relevant to the texts read in class.

(S1) Text reading skills

(S2) Research and analytical skills

Advanced Ancient Egyptian Language and Script 1 (ALGY721)
LevelM
Credit level30
SemesterFirst Semester
Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
Aims

To foster research-level competence in the critical treatment of original textual sources and language from Ancient Egypt through enhancing understanding of relevant phases of the Ancient Egyptian language and of reading inscriptions written in the original script and developing further competence in reading texts written in original script to level of critical commentary of published transcriptions and independent research work.

Learning Outcomes

(LO1) To be able to read and analyse Ancient Egyptian texts in original script and language to advanced level for research purposes

(S1) Critical thinking and problem solving – Critical analysis

(S2) Improving own learning/performance – Reflective practice

(S3) Time and project management – Project management

Advanced Ancient Egyptian Language and Script 2 (ALGY722)
LevelM
Credit level30
SemesterSecond Semester
Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
Aims

To foster research-level competence in the critical treatment of original textual sources and language from Ancient Egypt through enhancing understanding of relevant phases of the Ancient Egyptian language and of reading inscriptions written in the original script and developing further competence in reading texts written in original script to level of critical commentary of published transcriptions and independent research work.

Learning Outcomes

(LO1) To be able to read and analyse Ancient Egyptian texts in original script and language to advanced level for research purposes

(S1) Critical thinking and problem solving – Critical analysis

(S2) Improving own learning/performance – Reflective practice

(S3) Time and project management – Project management

Artefacts and Analysis (ALGY737)
LevelM
Credit level15
SemesterFirst Semester
Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
Aims

This module will provide the theoretical framework and practical instruction in the scientific investigation and interrogation of archaeological artefacts. Students will also gain a working knowledge of the main analytical techniques used in the analysis of archaeological material and how to chose appropriate techniques to address specific types of question;

Basic introductory instruction will be given in the main types of optical microscopy, scanning electron microscopy and in chemical analysis of artefacts;

A central theme of the module is that, while the scientific study of archaeological artefacts can be used to address cultural and historical questions, that study has to be approached from within a firm archaeological context. Furthermore, the data generated by that study need then to be interpreted within the appropriate cultural framework, with as broad an understanding as possible;

Artefacts from the Departmental study collections and Museum will be studied during the practical sessions and a practical project studying a variety of artefact types resulting in a detailed written report forms part of the final assessment.

Learning Outcomes

(LO1) Students who take this module should gain an understanding of the analytical techniques used to investigate archaeological artefacts.

(LO2) Students will gain some practical experience of the analysis of archaeological materials and a basic grasp of the skills set required to undertake this work.

(LO3) Students will understand the practical problems of sampling archaeological objects and their analysis, and the necessity of a fully contextualised interpretation.

(S1) Sampling, sample preparation, analytical and data analysis skills

Economies and Exchange in the Ancient Near East (ALGY688)
LevelM
Credit level15
SemesterSecond Semester
Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
Aims

To introduce students to key issues, methods and evidence essential to the conducting archaeological and historical research on production and trade in the Ancient Near East;

To introduce students to the possibilities and problems of combining the evidence from ancient texts and archaeological materials to produce interpretations of developments in the past.

Learning Outcomes

(LO1) Students successfully completing the module will have developed a critical appreciation of key debates regarding the nature of economic activity in the Ancient Near

(LO2) Students successfully completing the module will gain significant experience in absorbing, synthesising, and using unfamiliar archaeological and historical evidence for the purposes of investigating questions of general historical and cultural significance.

(LO3) Students successfully completing the modue will be introduced to core methods used to investigate production and trade by means of both archaeological and textual evidence (e.g. faunal and archaeobotanical analysis; analysis of seals and sealings; analysis of ancient book-keeping and other administrative practices; provenancing of artefacts and raw materials). Particular attention will be given to the critical and effective interpretation of the results of these methods.

(LO4) Students successfully completing the module will further develop their ability to construct and express effective verbal and written argument.

(S1) Improving own learning/performance - Reflective practice

(S2) Communication (oral, written and visual) - Listening skills

(S3) Communication (oral, written and visual) - Academic writing (including referencing skills)

(S4) Communication (oral, written and visual) - Presentation skills – oral

(S5) Time and project management - Project planning

(S6) Critical thinking and problem solving - Critical analysis

(S7) Research skills - All Information skills

Research Themes in the Neolithic of the Near East (ALGY656)
LevelM
Credit level15
SemesterFirst Semester
Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
Aims

This module aims to examine the conceptual frameworks and research methods used in investigating the development of the world's first agricultural, pastoralist and sedentary communities, all changes fundamental to the development of complex and modern society.

The module aims to explore the behaviours of these 'Neolithic' communities across the Near East and Europe. We will question when these phenomena appeared, why they might have appeared and how human societies responded to their new opportunities and pressures;

The module aims to examine how much distinctive ritual practices, art, new forms of identity and new sorts of engagements with their landscapes characterized these communities. The West Eurasia scope of the module will provide and opportunity to see how much Neolithic behaviour varied as it first developed and then spread from the Near East (SW Asia) into Europe;

The module will identify key themes in current research into the Neolithic and provide students some choice about the themes upon which we will focus. The module thus aims to develop an understanding of the problems and potential of a range of research tools available to a rchaeology in gaining an understanding of these changes and knowledge of ancillary disciplines relating to human palaeoecology, archaeobotany and archaeozoology;

The module aims to engage students with the research approaches and practices that typify the investigation of key issues in European and Near Eastern prehistory, including an evaluation of primary archaeological evidence;

The module aims to promote and enable the development of students' critical and analytical approach to evidence and the combined use of different sources of evidence;

The module aims to promote and enable the development of students' ability to construct and express effective verbal and written argument at a research level.

Learning Outcomes

(LO1) Students successfully completing the module will achieve an understanding of key research issues in the Neolithic of Europe and the Near East as well as the origins of agriculture more generally. They will have engaged with some of the relevant primary source material/data relevant to these issues. They will themselves have conducted research relevant to these issues on a small scale. Students successfully completing the module will appreciate some of the methodological issues of using archaeological evidence as sources for understanding such early societies.

(LO2) Students successfully completing the module will achieve an understanding of when sedentism and farming appeared, why they might have appeared and how human societies responded to their new opportunities and pressures.

(LO3) Students successfully completing the module will develop an understanding of the problems and potential of a range of research tools available to archaeology in gaining an understanding of changes in human behaviour in the Neolithic and knowledge of ancillary disciplines relating to human palaeoecology, archaeobotany and archaeozoology.

(LO4) Students successfully completing the module will further develop critical and analytical approaches to evidence and the combined use of different sources of evidence.

(LO5) Students successfully completing the module will further develop their ability to construct and express effective verbal and written argument.

(LO6) The module also enables students to foster transferable skills (not all directly tested in the assessment), e.g. listening and note-taking skills; analytical reading; identification, recall and deployment of material relevant to a particular question; awareness of controversy in technical literature; succinct written exposition; succinct oral presentation and discussion of prepared material; time-management.

(S1) Research skills - All Information skills

(S2) Communication (oral, written and visual) - Presentation skills – oral.

(S3) Communication (oral, written and visual) - Presentation skills - written.

(S4) Improving own learning/performance - Reflective practice.

(S5) Time and project management - Personal organisation.

(S6) Critical thinking and problem solving - Critical analysis.

(S7) Critical thinking and problem solving - Synthesis.

(S8) Research skills - Awareness of /commitment to academic integrity.

Researching Urban Communities in the Near East, 5000-500 B.c (ALGY646)
LevelM
Credit level15
SemesterSecond Semester
Exam:Coursework weighting0:100
Aims

The nature and development of urban communities are issues central to an understanding of modern day life. Throughout the module it is intended that students will examine concepts of urbanism in an advanced fashion. Students will also engage in critical evaluation of research strategies and analytical approaches that allow us to appreciate the development and nature of early urban communities in the Near East through the archaeological and textual record. By 3000 BC the Near East had witnessed the appearance of the world's first cities and states.  This module investigates concepts and analytical methods suited to the analysis of these early cities on the basis of archaeological evidence.

In particular, this module aims to go beyond the traditional archaeological focus on external catalysts for initial urbanisation and look instead at the relations that constitute cities and how these might be both reflected in and shaped by the forms, layouts, and structures of urban settlements. This aim requires students to grasp core concepts regarding the spatial organisation of cities;

To appreciate the problems and potential of both the available archaeological and textual data;

To develop a critical analytical sense of how primary archaeological examples might be analysed in order to form arguments regarding the nature, form and development of cities in the ancient Near East;

To learn to utilise key tools, especially software, designed to facilitate the spatial analysis of archaeological site plans.

Learning Outcomes

(LO1) Students successfully completing the module will achieve an understanding of key research issues in Near Eastern archaeology and studies of urbanism.

(LO2) Students  successfully completing the module will have engaged with relevant primary source data.

(LO3) Students successfully completing the module will themselves have conducted research relevant to these issues on a smallscale.

(LO4) Students successfully completing the module will have gained a basic critical understanding of tools and methods relevant to the study of urban forms and structures in the ancient Near East.

(S1) Numeracy/computational skills - Problem solving

(S2) Communication (oral, written and visual) - Presentation skills – oral

(S3) Communication (oral, written and visual) - Presentation skills - written

(S4) Critical thinking and problem solving - Problem identification

(S5) Critical thinking and problem solving - Critical analysis

(S6) Communication (oral, written and visual) - Academic writing (inc. referencing skills)

(S7) Skills in using technology - Using common applications (work processing, databases, spreadsheets etc.)

(S8) Research skills - All Information skills


*The programme detail and modules listed are illustrative and could be subject to change.