Module Catalogue 2024/25

ARA3013 : Early Medieval Britain

ARA3013 : Early Medieval Britain

  • Offered for Year: 2024/25
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Duncan Wright
  • Lecturer: Professor Sam Turner
  • Owning School: History, Classics and Archaeology
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus

Your programme is made up of credits, the total differs on programme to programme.

Semester 2 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0
European Credit Transfer System

Modules you must have done previously to study this module

Pre Requisite Comment



Modules you need to take at the same time

Co Requisite Comment



This module will provide students with an in-depth knowledge of key themes in the early medieval archaeology of Britain, with a focus on the lands now making up England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland. We will explore key themes in early medieval archaeology to gain an in depth understanding of the period.
The aims of this module are:
1. To provide an in depth knowledge of key themes relating to the early medieval archaeology.
2. To examine the sources and methods that are available to early medievalists including archaeological excavation and survey, landscapes, artefact studies, and historical documents.

Outline Of Syllabus

The course will examine the following key themes in early medieval archaeology:

Regionality in the North European ‘Iron Age’
Migration and Ethnicity
Art and Material Culture
Cult and Rulership
Death, Belief and Commemoration
Conversion and Christianisation
Christian Spaces and Royal Places
Settlement and Landscape
Trade and Exchange
Landscapes of Governance
The 'Viking Age'
Urbanism and Trade Systems

Learning Outcomes

Intended Knowledge Outcomes

1. an knowledge of the sources used by early medieval archaeologists in Northern Europe
2. an understanding of the methods used by early medievalists for analysing data from a range of sources
3. an understanding of key themes relating to early medieval Northern Europe

Intended Skill Outcomes

1. the ability to identify and use effectively specialist publications including fieldwork reports, surveys, and excavation reports.
2. the ability to collect, collate and analyse data from a range of different sources relating to themes in the early medieval archaeology of Northern Europe using relevant techniques.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion621:0062:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture141:0014:00Live lectures
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading621:0062:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching81:008:00Live seminars and practical instruction
Structured Guided LearningStructured research and reading activities221:0022:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesFieldwork13:003:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesFieldwork18:008:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study211:0021:00N/A
Jointly Taught With
Code Title
ARA8113Early Medieval Britain
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

1. Lectures will provide an introduction to significant themes and concepts.
2. Seminars will deliver advanced knowledge and critical understanding, building on the lectures, through presentation and in-depth discussion of detailed case studies.
3. Private study to provide in-depth understanding through background reading, preparation of seminar presentations, identification/collation/analysis of information for assessments.
4. The field-trip will enable students to gain a fuller understanding of the nature of sites and landscapes.

Reading Lists

Assessment Methods

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

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Essay2M401500 words. Feed forward to Essay 2
Essay2A602500 words
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

Essays will assess ability to analyse data critically and published interpretations relating to key themes in early medieval studies using methods and techniques taught through lectures and seminars.

Submitted work tests intended knowledge and skills outcomes, develops key skills in research, reading and writing.

This module can be made available to Erasmus students only with the agreement of the Head of Subject and of the Module Leader. This option must be discussed in person at the beginning of your exchange period. No restrictions apply to study-abroad, exchange and Loyola students.


Past Exam Papers

General Notes


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The information contained within the Module Catalogue relates to the 2024 academic year.

In accordance with University Terms and Conditions, the University makes all reasonable efforts to deliver the modules as described.

Modules may be amended on an annual basis to take account of changing staff expertise, developments in the discipline, the requirements of external bodies and partners, and student feedback. Module information for the 2025/26 entry will be published here in early-April 2025. Queries about information in the Module Catalogue should in the first instance be addressed to your School Office.