Major in Archaeology

BA, 3-4 years

This is for you if... you would like to combine the study of Archaeology with another subject.

Course Description

By choosing Archaeology as a Major, you will discover the richness and diversity of the human past and the key events and processes that have shaped our human worlds. A Major in Archaeology will provide you with the core knowledge and skills required of this discipline. You will be able to gain a deep understanding of core subject areas, develop practical field skills through excavation training, and you may be able to enhance your skill-set through our more science-based laboratory courses. Your pathway through the discipline will be very similar to that of a single honours student, though you will not complete a dissertation in Year 3. You will also have the choice to select from a wide range of complementary Minors from other disciplines in the University. This allows you to tailor your degree to your areas of interest.

Key Facts
Typical offer
UCAS code
Start date
September 2017
Archaeology and Ancient History

Admissions enquiries
+44 (0)116 252 5281

Course enquiries
+44 (0)116 252 2772

Archaeology and Ancient History website

View Key Information Sets

Why Leicester?

We run an incredible week-long study tour in Rome and also offer fieldwork opportunities across Britain and as far away as America.

Archaeology and Ancient History at Leicester achieved 95% student satisfaction in the NSS in 2015, with 100% for staff enthusiasm.

You will receive practical training from ULAS (University of Leicester Archaeological Services), who were involved with the discovery of Richard III.

We have nine specialist laboratories (including a new Osteology Lab): four dedicated to teaching and all available for student use.

Course Structure

Year 1

Year 1

In your first year you will be introduced to archaeology at a global scale as we take a chronological overview of human history. During lectures and tutorials you will actively explore the fundamental topics that drive archaeological enquiry today: Who are our human ancestors? How did tools help shape human evolution? Why did people become farmers? Why did people build monuments? Were the Vikings raiders or traders? What does architecture reveal about medieval religion?

You will also participate in our training excavation at Bradgate Park in Leicester. This project is run jointly by Archaeology at Leicester staff and our professional archaeological unit, University of Leicester Archaeological Services (ULAS).


Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Year 2

Year 2

In your second year you will take one core module in each semester plus two option modules. In semester one you will be introduced to some of the big debates in the study of human prehistory. This builds on knowledge gained in your first year but takes a more problem-oriented approach. You will have the opportunity to develop your practical skills with laboratory-based modules and to expand your knowledge of the discipline across a wide range of time periods.

Core modules

Option modules

Choose two option modules from:

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Year Abroad (optional)

Year Abroad (optional)

If you want to, you can spend your third year studying abroad at one of our partner institutions or working in an industrial placement (eligibility is dependent on your academic performance in Years 1 and 2). Alternatively, you can opt to continue studying at the University and complete your degree in three years.

Studying abroad is not just for people who are interested in travelling and meeting new people. It is about acquiring life skills that are becoming increasingly significant for a wide range of jobs in our modern globalised society. Whether you go on to work in the private sector, the state sector, a non-governmental organisation, or become self-employed you will find the experience invaluable. Find out more from our International Office.

Please note, a year spent abroad or on an industrial placement still incurs a tuition fee, but this is much lower than for a normal year at Leicester. See our Fees and Funding section for details.

Archaeology at Leicester has links with several European universities, administered through the European Erasmus scheme. If you are eligible for a loan from Student Finance you can apply for a travel grant from them. During your second year at Leicester you will receive appropriate language training.

  • For the latest information on the future of the Erasmus scheme at UK universities please see our Brexit microsite 

We have links with the following universities:

We also have links with some universities outside Europe. If you are receiving financial assistance from Student Finance your support will continue and you may also be eligible to apply for additional travel grants or scholarships. We have links with the following universities:

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Final Year

Final Year

In your final year you will have the freedom to choose all six of your modules from a wide range of thematic topics, including modules with a strong practical element, such as Archaeozoology and Human Skeletal Analysis. These modules generally reflect the active research interests of the staff and are usually structured around a strong theme, approach, method, or particular time period. Interaction is a mix of lectures and student-led seminar discussion.

Choose three option modules from:

Plus three option modules from:

Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

Major/Minor Degrees

On a Major/Minor degree, you study a core area in depth (in this case Archaeology), while also exploring an additional area (your minor subject).


Please note that you cannot study a Major in Archaeology with a Minor in Archaeology.

Now choose your Minor

Teaching and Assessment

All of our teaching is based around a stimulating combination of lectures, small group work, and practical ‘hands-on’ experience. Flexible academic classes are combined with practical instruction in the field. You will have the chance to study a wide range of different societies and will develop the skills to examine them in more detail.

Your assessment may include essays, exams, lab reports, practical tests, group work, oral presentations, and a dissertation.

In addition, you will have regular meetings with your personal tutor to discuss your progress. Your personal tutor will also provide a sympathetic ear for all matters of personal concern, whether academic, financial, housing, career or social.

Research Stories

Entry Requirements

  • A/AS-levels: BBB. Two AS-levels can be considered in place of one A-level. General Studies or Critical Thinking accepted.
  • EPQ with A-Levels: BBC at A-Level + EPQ at grade B. Two AS-Levels considered in place of one A-Level. General Studies is accepted.
  • GCSE: English and Maths at grade C.
  • Access to HE Diploma: Pass diploma with 45 credits at level 3, including some at Distinction.
  • International Baccalaureate: Pass Diploma with 28-30 points.
  • BTEC Nationals: Pass Diploma with DDM.

Other national and international qualifications welcomed. If you do not meet the entry requirements for this course, you can apply for the International Foundation Year run by our dedicated International Study Centre. The ISC provides academic and English language support to help you progress to your chosen undergraduate degree at the University of Leicester.

Second Year Entry may be possible with suitable qualifications.

Selection Process

When considering your application, we will look for evidence that you will be able to fulfil the objectives of the course and achieve the standards required. We will take into account a range of factors including previous exam results.

English Language Requirements

IELTS 6.5 or equivalent. If your first language is not English, you may need to provide evidence of your English language ability. If you do not yet meet our requirements, our English Language Teaching Unit (ELTU) offers a range of courses to help you to improve your English to the necessary standard.

International Qualifications

Find your country in this list to check equivalent qualifications, scholarships and additional requirements.

Countries list

Fees and Funding

  • Starting in 2017

    • £9,250 in your first year. After 2017/18, the tuition fee you pay may increase annually in line with inflation (RPIX) and is subject to government regulations. (RPIX is a measure of inflation in the UK, equivalent to all items in the Retail Price Index (RPI) excluding mortgage interest payments.)
    • Year Abroad: your fee will be £1,250 for that year.
    Find out more about scholarships and funding.
  • Starting in 2017

    • £15,290 per year

    Year Abroad: your fee will be £3,822.50 which is 25% of the full-time tuition fee.

    Find out more about scholarships and funding.


Career Opportunities

We have dedicated work experience and outreach tutors who organise placements for you in schools, museums, field archaeology units, archives, laboratories and on external projects – complementing the volunteering provision within the University.

You can choose to take career-focused modules (such as Archaeology and Ancient History in Education) and volunteer for Archaeology and Classics in the Community.


Our Career Development Service is here to support you, with advice on interviews, CVs, work experience, volunteering, and more. From Freshers’ Week to Graduation and beyond, they are here to help you reach your professional goals.

Course Qualification Duration UCAS Code Availability
Major in Archaeology BA 3 years full-time V402 Apply Now
Major in Archaeology with Year Abroad BA 4 years full-time V402 Apply Now
Major in Archaeology
3 years full-time
Major in Archaeology with Year Abroad
4 years full-time

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