ARA2091 : Archaeologies of the Roman Empire: The Roman World from Augustus to Justinian

  • Offered for Year: 2012/13
  • Module Leader(s): Prof. Ian Haynes
  • Lecturer: Dr Mark Jackson
  • Teaching Assistant: Miss Frances McIntosh
  • Owning School: History, Classics and Archaeology
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 1 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0


This course examines the archaeology of the Roman Empire from Augustus to Justinian. It spans a period that saw high drama and rapid change for many of the peoples of Europe, North Africa, Asia Minor and the Near East. The different and unequal ways that the imperial authorities and local populations adapted to one another are manifested in a plethora of settings, from epic monuments to humble homes, and from rich graves to rubbish pits. This course offers a comprehensive introduction to the landscapes, buildings and artefacts of the Empire, while at the same time revealing the important role of regions far beyond Rome in generating new forms, styles and ideas.

Outline Of Syllabus

This course covers:
Archaeologies of Empire
Cities of the Roman World
The Archaeology of Emperor Worship
Roman Epigraphy
The Armies of Rome
Pottery in the Roman world
Coinage and Trade
Public Architecture
Bread and Circuses: theatres, amphitheatres and other centres of spectacle
Private homes? From palaces to paupers huts
Villas, things called villas and farms
Riches from the Earth: How Rome exploited natural resources
Landscapes of the Dead
The Archaeology of cult in the Roman Empire

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture222:0044:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion581:0058:0040% of guided independent studies
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical22:004:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading581:0058:0040% of guided independent studies
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching31:003:00Seminars
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesFieldwork13:003:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesFieldwork12:002:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study281:0028:0020% of guided independent studies
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

The programme combines lectures, seminars, practical (object handling) sessions and site visits to develop student familiarity with both synthetic analysis and raw material for the study of the Roman Empire. Particular emphasis will be placed on fostering basic finds handling skills.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written Examination1201A60Unseen
Written Examination601M15In house - Course multiple choice test
Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Prob solv exercises1M15data handling exercise
Prof skill assessmnt1M10Participation - Contribution to Saturnalia and presentations
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

Examination examines conceptual understanding through 2 essays (selected from six questions) and technical knowledge of Roman administrative machinery through short multiple choice section (20 questions). Knowledge outcomes 1, 3 & 4.

Data handling exercise assesses knowledge outcome 2.

ERASMUS students at Newcastle One 2,000 word essay to be handed in by 12.00 p.m. of the Friday of the first week of the assessment period. This will replace all work required of domestic students. It remains the case that, if an ERASMUS student specifically requests that s/he be permitted to do the same assessments as the domestic students, that option remains open to them. No variation of the deadlines will be allowed except on production of medical or equivalent evidence.

Reading Lists


Disclaimer: The University will use all reasonable endeavours to deliver modules in accordance with the descriptions set out in this catalogue. Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information, however, the University reserves the right to introduce changes to the information given including the addition, withdrawal or restructuring of modules if it considers such action to be necessary.