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Training and Site Management Masterclasses

The Centre for Applied Archaeology provides Masterclasses on Archaeology, Heritage Management and Conservation. Our Masterclasses are designed and supervised by Principal Consultants, professional experts in their fields, and taught by experienced staff from the Centre for Applied Archaeology in collaboration with staff of the Institute of Archaeology, University College London.

The Masterclasses are designed to improve skills in:
Archaeological Field Techniques Excavation, Surveying, Research.
Cultural Heritage theory and international context.
Archaeological site management incl. writing Management Plans and Nomination Files for World Heritage Sites.
Archaeological & standing building recording.
Artefact conservation & storage.
Conservation Planning theory and conservation plans, condition assessments.
Ceramic and finds recording & analysis.
Environmental Archaeology.
Geographic Information Systems (GIS) & Surveying and Geophysical prospecting.
Photography (including digital photography).
Interpretation & education Interpretation, Exhibition Design, Education Strategies.
Sustainable tourism visitor surveys, tourism planning.

For Whom?
The Masterclasses are aimed at Archaeologists, Heritage Managers, Archaeological Park Staff, Governmental Organisations, University staff and students, and more.

Dominic Perring and Henry Cleere (1st and 2nd from left) undertaking a workshop on value-based planning with ASI (Archaeological Survey of India) and CRCI

The Masterclasses combine theory with real practical outcomes. This often means that courses will be taught in a classroom (making use of a wide range of supporting materials), which will then be followed up by fieldwork on an archaeological site or museum. The Masterclasses can consist of:

1. Major residential training courses on site
A number of fieldwork training courses (lasting between 1-6 weeks) focusing on specific issues of conservation, site management, recording, interpretation, and documentation. These would be supervised by our Principal Consultants, developing specific skills and approaches, while practically achieving substantial advances in the management, documentation and conservation of the resource. These will be linked to the provision of short-courses (below) and training materials.

2. Seminars and short-courses
Short-courses international experts providing focused short-courses (1 to 4 weeks in duration) developing core skills. Supported by translated key learning resources.

3. Work Programmes
Developing individual work programmes, with specific practical outcomes, managed locally but supported by appropriate visits from our specialists.

Read more about the Centre for Applied Archaeology

Merv; Teachers Handbook

Principal consultants:
Dr. Dominic Perring: Project Management and Field Techniques
Mr. Mike Corbishley: Education and Outreach (Institute of Archaeology, University College London);
Mr. Tim Williams: Site Management and Interpretation (Institute of Archaeology, University College London);
Prof. Henry Cleere: Archaeological Heritage Consultant, Site Management and WHS designation (Institute of Archaeology, University College London), and;
Mr. Chris Hudson: Museum Design and Interpretive Planning

Supporting Staff:
Louise Rayner: Post-excavation and publicatiion and training courses
Josie Murray: Management, Environmental Assessments, Building conservation, town-planning.
Richard James: Condition Assessment, desk-top survey, landscape characterisation.

Example of Masterclasses at Ancient Merv in Turkmenistan.

A three week training programme was undertaken at the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Ancient Merv Archaeological Park, between the 13th and the 30th of June in 2005. This work was generously funded and enabled by a grant from The Kaplan Foundation, with the support and administration of the World Monuments Fund. The programme was attended by staff from the State Archaeological Parks, from all over Turkmenistan, to work together at Merv, developing skills in digital photography, archaeological recording, documentation and management planning.

Participants of the Masterclasses at the World Heritage Site of Ancient Merv in Turkmenistan.
Participants of the Masterclasses at the World Heritage Site of Ancient Merv in Turkmenistan.

The Masterclasses consisted of two courses:
Course 1: Ethics, philosophy and approaches to the management of Cultural Heritage sites . A one-week course aimed at a broad audience from a range of Archaeological Parks across Turkmenistan.
Course 2: Approaches to documentation of Cultural Heritage sites. A two week course primarily aimed at the Merv Park Staff, but also attended by some staff from other Archaeological Parks.



Archaeologists of the WHS of Ancient Merv undertaking courses on Archaeological recording & documentation. The course considered strategies for preventative conservation, the condition assessment of old excavation sites, and worldwide perspectives on reburial programmes. The participants then undertook all stages of the processes: documentation, installation of the separator, preparation of the materials and compaction.

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Sample Training and Site Management Masterclass Projects

• Merv, Turkmenistan.
• Red Fort, Delhi, India.

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