Archaeology at the Centre for Open learning (COL)

Archaeology at the Centre for Open learning (COL): developing an accessible and inclusive pedagogical approach to fieldwork

School:  Centre for Open Learning (COL)

Team Members: Rachael King, Alex Hale, Kristian Pedersen


This project hopes to identify ways to widen access to archaeological fieldwork/study, regardless of participants’ education background or physical ability.  By the end of the project we hope to be able to confidently design a Centre for Open Learning (COL) fieldwork course with accessibility and inclusivity at its heart.

We hope to identify the gaps in opportunity for communities and individuals who may wish to study archaeology, however informally.  We hope to identify ways of ensuring the skills relating to fieldwork, can be taught in an accessible and inclusive environment.

Archaeology is a popular area of study in COL.  Student feedback, engagement with the broader heritage sector and communication with local community groups has identified a growing interest and need for ‘field’ studies and skills.  Archaeology can be immediately relevant to everyone.  It can be studied on a whole host of scales such as local, international, urban, rural, vernacular, and academic.  However, as a discipline it can suffer from a somewhat lofty, exclusive reputation.  We hope that our project will work towards broadening participation in the subject at a local and immediate level.

Other project outcomes

Hale A and Pedersen K  (2019)  Mini-series: Archaeology for all Teaching Matters University of Edinburgh

Final project report

Download the final project report (MS Word)