Master of Arts in Archaeological Practice

Master of Arts in Archaeological Practice

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Course information

Course title Master of Arts in Archaeological Practice
Course code PMAARPFTT6
Postnominal M.A.(Melit.)
Level of qualification Second Cycle
National Qualifications Framework level Level 7
Duration 3 Semesters
Mode of attendance Full-time
Total ECTS credits 90
Coordinator Nicholas Vella
Delivered by Faculty of Arts
The archaeological profession relies on individuals with a high level of practical skills and the MA programme is designed to provide students with advanced training in archaeological practice through a curriculum that merges theory with practice. The programme is strongly tailored towards professional relevance and will make extensive use of archaeological sites and monuments in one of the richest archaeological landscapes of the Mediterranean. A substantial part of the programme relies on core modules that are compulsory; two electives (10 ECTS) are being offered to allow students a degree of specialist training in either of two fields. In addition, students will be expected to write a dissertation (30 ECTS) and follow a mandatory 4-week summer placement (5 ECTS). The successful completion of the programme will ensure that students can participate in the effective management of important archaeological resources.


Building on a typical undergraduate archaeology curriculum (EQF Level 6), the programme is designed to provide participants with a combination of theory and intensive practical training that will provide them with skills and competences that are standard requirements for archaeological practice today.

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The Course shall be open to applicants who are in possession of the degree of Bachelor of Arts in Archaeology classified with at least Third Class Honours or Category III, or a degree from this or from another university which the Board considers as comparable.

The admission requirements are applicable for courses commencing in October 2019.

For more detailed information pertaining to admission and progression requirements please refer to the bye-laws for the course available here.

UM currently hosts over 1,000 full-time international students and over 450 visiting students. The ever-increasing international students coming from various countries, in recent years, have transformed this 400-year old institution into an international campus.

Our international students generally describe Malta as a safe place, enjoying excellent weather and an all-year varied cultural programme. Malta is considered as the ideal place for students to study.

You can compare your national qualifications to the local requirements by visiting our qualifications comparability webpage.

Access more information about our admission process and English language requirements.

After you receive an offer from us, our International Office will assist you with visas, accommodation and other related issues.

Local/EU/EEA Applicants: Annual Enrolment Fee: Eur 400

Non-EU/Non-EEA Applicants: Total Tuition Fees: Eur 10,800
Yr 1: Eur 10,800 - Yr 2: NIL
At the end of the course, graduates will be expected to demonstrate the following:

a) Subject knowledge and understanding

- address, formulate, and research archaeological problems through set tasks
- evaluate and demonstrate a variety of methods for investigating archaeological resources that respects the non-renewable nature of the resource
- describe the laws, policies and government regulations that pertain to archaeological practice (nationally, European, globally)
- consider the ramifications of the ethical issues that face the archaeological profession
- evaluate the social implications of archaeology

b) Intellectual development

- demonstrate critical judgement in consulting stakeholders, including regulatory bodies, operating agencies, researchers and the community
- reflect critically on archaeological practices
- demonstrate self-direction in tackling and resolving issues involving archaeological resources at risk.

c) Key/transferable skills

- demonstrate the ability to work independently, to the highest ethical standards, and according to negotiated deadlines
- team-building skills and the ability to lead by promoting consensus
- design and carry out a survey of archaeological features in a select stretch of landscape
- design and prepare a catalogue of archaeological artefacts (drawn and photographs)
- design and prepare a professionally designed environment impact assessment
- prepare reports and a dissertation (sourcing material, processing literature in a critical manner, formulate a research proposal and describe research paths, critically evaluate date, and communicate research results effectively).

d) Other skills relevant to employability and personal development

- develop an understanding of professionalism
- apply a range of practical skills that will make them more efficient professionals
- discuss their work with peers and justify courses of action recommended
- the ability to show how archaeology benefits society by highlighting ways in which the past can be used to think productively about the present and future.
The programme is intended for students who have obtained a first-cycle degree in Archaeology (B.A. or B.A. Honours) and would like to go on to careers as postgraduate researchers, employees in developer-funded archaeology or other type of archaeological practice in the broader heritage management sector.
The course provides students with the skills and knowledge necessary to follow careers in developer-funded archaeology or other type of archaeological practice in the broader heritage management sector.

It also provides students with an ideal gateway to MPhil/PhD research oriented towards applications of archaeological concepts and strategies.
Click here to access the Programme of Study applicable from 2019/0.

Last Updated: 30 September 2019

The University makes every effort to ensure that the published Courses Plans, Programmes of Study and Study-Unit information are complete and up-to-date at the time of publication. The University reserves the right to make changes in case errors are detected after publication.
The availability of optional units may be subject to timetabling constraints.
Units not attracting a sufficient number of registrations may be withdrawn without notice.
Unless for exceptional approved reasons, no changes to the programme of study for a particular academic year will be made once the students' registration period for that academic year begins.