MSc Osteoarchaeology

Department of Archaeology, Faculty of Arts and Humanities

We inspire students to explore and excel through imaginative teaching and the world-leading research we conduct across the globe.

My MSc in Osteoarchaeology has been fundamental in developing my career as it provided me with the essential tools of zooarchaeological analysis as well as the necessary skills to approach a career in archaeology, whether on commercially funded projects or in academic research.

Sofia Tecce, MSc Osteoarchaeology graduate

About the course

September 2018 start

Course description

This programme combines the study of human and animal bones from archaeological sites, generally known as ‘human osteology’ and ‘zooarchaeology’ or ‘archaeozoology’.

Teaching is centred on the explanation of methods and approaches that can be used to address many different types of archaeological questions, regardless of the period or geographic area.

Students play an active part in the shaping of their own programme of study and have the opportunity to develop their own original research.

Sofia Tecce, MSc Osteoarchaeology graduate

Core modules

  • Advanced Zooarchaeology
  • The History of the Human Animal Relationship
  • Zooarchaeological Assemblage Analysis
  • Archaeozoology
  • Biological Anthropology I
  • Biological Anthropology II
  • Human Osteology
  • Dissertation in either Human Osteoarchaeology or Zooarchaeology

Indicative optional modules

  • Quantitative Methods in Anthropology
  • Applied Archaeological Science
  • Osteoarchaeological Assemblage Analysis
  • Biological Anthropology II
  • A 15 credit module can be selected from a range across the Faculty of Arts and Humanities

How we will teach and assess you

Our students come from all around the world and the content of our courses reflects this. You can expect a balanced timetable of lectures, seminars and practicals. Many of our masters courses also include a fieldwork or project work component.

Our teaching staff are leading scholars in their field. Through their research and field projects they are active in generating new knowledge that feeds directly into their teaching.

Part-time study

This course can be taken full-time or part-time.

If you study part-time, you'll take two 15-credit modules in each semester during Year 1 and Year 2, and either a dissertation or placement module over the summer of Year 2. We arrange for you to attend two days a week but we try to be as flexible as possible.

Course duration

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

Entry requirements

A minimum of a 2:1 honours degree in an arts, humanities or science subject is usually required. Your interest in and knowledge of archaeological matters are more important than the specific discipline of your undergraduate degree.

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

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Fees and funding

If you accept a place on one of our courses, you may be eligible to apply for WRoCAH and University of Sheffield studentships. There are also a number of departmental and programme-specific scholarships available each year. See our website for details.

Financial information for postgraduate taught courses

Apply now

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

Postgraduate Online Application Form

Any questions?

If you'd like to know more about any aspect of our courses, contact us:

T: +44 (0)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.