2019 start

Environmental Archaeology and Palaeoeconomy

Department of Archaeology, Faculty of Arts and Humanities

Through imaginative teaching and world-leading research, we inspire our students to explore.
Environmental Archaeology and Palaeoeconomy postgraduate in lab

Course description

We combine environmental archaeology with the study of past economies to advance our understanding of the relationship between people and nature. Teaching is via practical lab-based classes as well as lectures and seminars covering current theoretical debates.  

You will learn how reconstruct environments and economies in order to understand them – a critical skill for a career in research. Your dissertation gives you the opportunity to specialise in a particular area.  

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Core modules

  • Rethinking the Ancient Economy
  • Investigating Ancient Environments
  • Archaeobotany
  • Archaeozoology
  • Dissertation

Optional modules

Choose from a range of optional modules. These might include:

  • Advanced Zooarchaeology
  • Advanced Archaeobotany


You can expect a balanced timetable of lectures, seminars and practicals. You’ll have access to specialist labs and world-class reference collections. Many of our masters courses include a fieldwork or project-based component.

We integrate humanities and science-based approaches to nurture a deeper understanding. You’ll have the opportunity to explore different viewpoints and make up your own mind about their strengths and weaknesses.

We’ll help you to develop your critical thinking as well as your practical skills. What we ask of you, as a member of our lively academic community, is that you challenge, question, and explore.


  • 1 year full-time
  • 2 years part-time

The scope is what I enjoy most about this course. I feel as though I have become more knowledgeable and well-rounded in all things animal, plant and soil.

Maddie O’Neill
MSc Environmental Archaeology and Palaeoeconomy

Entry requirements

Usually a minimum 2:1 honours degree in an arts, humanities or science subject. But your interest in and understanding of archaeology is more important than what you studied at undergraduate level.

English language requirements

Overall IELTS grade of 6.5 with a minimum of 5.5 in each component, or equivalent.

Entry requirements for international students

Fees and funding


If you accept a place on a course, you may be eligible to apply for White Rose College of the Arts and Humanities (WRoCAH) and University of Sheffield studentships. We also offer a number of department and course-specific scholarships. See the department's fees and funding page for more information.

Financial information for postgraduate taught courses


You can apply for postgraduate study using our Postgraduate Online Application Form. It's a quick and easy process.

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+44 114 222 2900

The course information set out here may change before you begin, particularly if you are applying significantly in advance of the start date.