Archaeology is the search for knowledge about historical human cultures, the way of life of early humankind, how people viewed the world, the interplay between humankind and the environment, material culture and other traces of early human culture.
Archaeology at Umeå University focuses on prehistoric and historical times in Europe and in Scandinavia. There are two special areas of interest: environmental archaeology and archaeological studies of northern regions. Field surveys, excavations, excursions and laboratory work are done as part of different research projects and as part of on-campus and web-based courses. The Laboratory of Environmental Archaeology allows archaeological problems to be studied in more depth through the employment of scientific methods.
Archaeology is about the history of humankind, both from the time when there were no written sources and in later times. Archaeologists study the meeting of and interplay between humans and between humans and nature but they are also interested in prehistoric times and its material cultures, the way people lived and viewed the world. Archaeologists also play an important role in social planning. Modern archaeological education and research is to a large part concerned with the meeting of past and present, and the significance of landscape for the people of prehistoric times. Umeå University provides students with a broad knowledge of archaeology with a special focus on prehistoric and historical times in Europe and Scandinavia. Students also gain a fundamental knowledge of archaeological research traditions and methods and of the environment and landscape from a long-term perspective. In addition, two unique themes are studied at Umeå: firstly, environmental archaeology that is based on natural science, and secondly, archaeological studies of northern regions where more and more evidence of a complex and exciting prehistory is being discovered. Teaching consists of both theory and field work in the form of excavations, excursions and laboratory work. Archaeology is an interdisciplinary subject and we often cooperate with other subjects from the humanities, social sciences and natural sciences. Areas of work for archaeologists include field archaeology, museum education, cultural heritage and social planning. Students who study all the archaeology courses on offer at Umeå University can work primarily with field archaeology, the preservation of cultural environments, at museums and with cultural tourism or they can continue with postgraduate studies. Studies in archaeology are also suitable for those who want to work as a teacher, journalist, artist or librarian, or for people active in the fields of culture and the environment, forestry and social planning.