Anthropology and Archaeology study guide 2023/24

Anthropology and Archaeology at Bristol

We are one of the few departments in the UK to combine Archaeology and Anthropology under one roof. Staff share a strong commitment to empirical and ethnographic research that reveals the material evidence of the past, and the scope of behaviours and beliefs in contemporary communities across the globe. Staff work in many parts of the world, from East Africa to South America to Bristol itself. The Department aims to bridge the two disciplines and offer a creative and common space for dialogue and exchange between the humanities, social and natural sciences. We are located in an early 20th century building at the centre of the University campus, 43 Woodland Road. Though our building is grand and stately, we maintain a friendly and informal atmosphere. Undergraduates, graduates and staff often work and socialise together, through seminars, fieldtrips and fieldwork. There is also the student-organised Archaeology & Anthropology Society, which hosts a lively series of guest lectures on archaeological and anthropological topics each year.

Unit structure

The department offers many classes that are based in a single semester, and can therefore accept unit requests from Study Abroad students who want to join Bristol for just the autumn or spring semester.

Unit levels

The department offers units across all undergraduate levels of study: year 1 (level C/4), year 2 (level I/5), and year 3 (level H/6) units. Postgraduate units are not available.

Unit codes

Unit codes in the Department of Anthropology and Archaeology begin with 'ARCH'. This is followed by a number indicating the year (1, 2, 3). For example:

  • ARCH10000 = year 1 unit
  • ARCH20000 = year 2 unit
  • ARCH30000 = year 3 unit.

For more information about each unit, check the University's unit catalogue for 2023/24. Applicants on all study abroad programmes must review the unit details on the catalogue before listing unit choices on their application form. This includes checking the format of assessment for each unit. The unit catalogue for 2023/24 is expected to be updated by the end of April 2023.

Your unit choices cannot be guaranteed. Some units may not have capacity to accommodate all of the unit requests we receive. Registration on a unit also depends on whether you meet the pre-requisite conditions through prior study at your home university.

Study Abroad (Subject pathway)

If you have been nominated to Bristol on the Study Abroad (Subject pathway), you must take the majority of your credits in this department.

Units available on the study abroad programme in 2023/24

The following units from the Department of Anthropology and Archaeology are open to inbound Study Abroad students.

Year 1 (level C/4)


  • Discovering the Past (TB1) - ARCH10015
  • Kin, Friends, Lovers and Others (TB1) - ARCH10019
  • Material Culture (TB1) - ARCH10013
  • Peoples, Culture and Languages (TB1) - ARCH10017


  • Big Ideas in Anthropology (TB2) - ARCH10012
  • Evolution in Action (TB2) - ARCH10014

Year 2 (level I/5)


  • Anthropological Methods (TB1) - ARCH20048
  • Early Human Origins (TB1) - ARCH20005
  • How Societies Evolve (TB1) - ARCH20064
  • Lives on the Move: Migration and Mobility from a Global Perspective (TB1) - ARCH20066
  • The Anthropology of Gender and Childhood (TB1) - ARCH20070


  • Anthropology and Contemporary Capitalism (TB2) - ARCH20065
  • Britain AD (TB2) - ARCH20068
  • Engaging with collections (TB2) - ARCH20071
  • Evolution and Human Behaviour (TB2) - ARCH20058
  • Social Theories (TB2) - ARCH20057
  • Playing Cultures: sports, games and bodily practices (TB2) - ARCH20072

Year 3 (level H/6)


  • A Planetary Caribbean: Land. Sea. Sky. Plantation (TB1) - ARCH30053
  • Cultural Heritage of the Built Environment (TB1) - ARCH30051
  • Human Challenges (TB1) - ARCH30034
  • Introduction to Forensic Anthropology (TB1) - ARCH30039


  • Anthropology of Disability and Difference (TB2) - ARCH30049
  • Introduction to Primatology (TB2) - ARCH30050
  • Museums and Heritage: Critical Perspectives (TB2) - ARCH30048

Year 4 (level M/7)

None available

Application queries

Contact the Centre for Study Abroad inbound team if you have any queries about the application process for the study abroad programmes:

Phone: +44 117 39 40207


Students cannot audit units. Study abroad students are fully registered on units for credit purposes and must attend teaching only for classes that they are registered on.

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