Major Option: Archaeological Sciences (BS)

The following is information on the Bachelor of Science in Archaeological Sciences.  Students may wish to consider the Bachelor of Arts in Archy.

Anthropology undergraduates earn either a Bachelor of Arts (BA) or a Bachelor of Science (BS) in Anthropology. The difference between the two degrees lies in how they are structured.  If you want a broad overview of Anthropology as a discipline or if you want to focus on the more humanistic side of Anthropology, the BA is for you.  If you want to focus on a particular area within the more scientific side of Anthropology, you should pursue the BS.

Both degrees are appropriate for a myriad of post-baccalaureate opportunities including graduate and professional school training in the health sciences (e.g. medical school, public health, physical therapy), law, social justice advocacy, and (of course!) anthropology.

The Archaeological Sciences option is recommended to students who are interested in an in-depth study of archaeological methods and theories. More specifically, it seeks to introduce students to the rigorous study of archaeological data. The required courses in this option will equip students with specialized laboratory, analytical and field skills, and will provide them with the historical context needed for understanding contemporary issues in archaeological sciences.

Special emphasis is put on teaching students the logic and rationale behind archaeological arguments. Students who complete this option will be well-equipped to pursue careers in archaeology-related fields both in private (e.g. cultural research management firms) and public (e.g. National Park Service, Forestry Service) sectors and to pursue graduate studies in archaeology.

The Archaeological Sciences option is a transcripted option that allows students’ academic work and expertise in archaeology to be recognized on their official academic transcript, which may help them in their applications to graduate programs or to gain employment.

This option is non-competitive and open to all Anthropology majors. 

Field experience is strongly recommended, especially with a UW-faculty led archaeology field school. Five credits of ARCHY 270 will count towards the 'approved courses' credits. Other kinds of field experience, such as participation in non-UW research projects or Cultural Resource Management (CRM) projects, can also be credited towards the 'approved courses' list. Students should consult with the archaeology faculty before undertaking field experience to ensure that it is appropriate for the ASc. The curriculum forecast is a useful tool to help with scheduling to fulfill the option's course requirements. 

BS in Archaeological Sciences (ASc) option requirements - 75 Credits

In addition to completing the core courses for anthropology (BIO A 201, ARCHY 205, and any 5 credit 200-level ANTH course) and one statistics course (choosing from CS&SS/SOC/STAT 221, STAT 220, STAT 311, Q SCI 381, or ARCHY 495), Archaeological Sciences students are asked to take the following courses to complete their 75 anthropology credits:

  1. 15 credits from the core Archaeological Sciences course list: ARCHY 372/3, 410, 459, 465, 467, 472/3, 480, 481, 482, 483, 484, 486, 487, 495, or BIO A 487
  2. 15 credits from the approved Archaeological Sciences course list (below)
  3. 25 credits of additional ARCHY, ANTH, or BIO A courses

Additionally, out of their 75 credits, 40 credits must be Upper Division and 50 credits must be Natural World courses in Anthropology.

Approved Courses for Archaeological Sciences (ASc)

(Number of credits in parentheses)

Strongly recommended:

Also recommended:

Course Substitutions

Students may also petition the department advising office to have other courses approved for the option, such as courses offered by the Center for Statistics and the Social Sciences or study abroad courses with a substantial archaeological component.

In their petition, the student must submit:

  1. a syllabus of the course that is not on the lists here
  2. a one-page justification of why the course is suitable to be counted toward the ASc option
  3. an explanation of why the student did not take a relevant ASc course when it was offered (for example, it conflicted with a major or minor requirement) and
  4. a copy of their academic transcript showing successful completion of the course to be credited toward the ASc option.

Please understand that petitions for waiving core credit requirements (15 credits from ARCHY 480481482483484495561) will only be approved in cases of compelling scheduling conflicts and for substitute courses of comparable relevance to Archaeological Sciences.