The following list describes my most recent courses. Each course title is linked to a pdf of the final syllabus. Much of this material is now out of date, so one should use the syllabi with appropriate caution.
Explores the fossil and archaeological evidence for human biological and cultural evolution. We examine the fossil and artifact record of the last several million years in order to develop an understanding of why we are interesting animals and a somewhat unique species. The first part of the course considers our biological heritage. We learn the biological bases of human life and carefully evaluate the human fossil record. The second part of the course introduces students to archaeology, the evolution of cultural behavior, and world prehistory. 4 hours.
Introduction to the problems of studying past cultures; special attention given to the ranges of techniques available and the adequacy of various methodologies as bases for sound inference about the structure of extinct cultures. Prerequisite: Anthropology 102, or consent of instructor. 3 hours.
Hands-on laboratory introduction on the anthropological applications of geographical information systems (GIS); covering basic principles and exploring the potential applications of GIS in archaeological, biological, and cultural anthropological research. Topics include GIS database fundamentals, linking to non-spatial data; spatial analysis and inference; data sources. Prerequisite: An introductory course in applied statistics. 4 hours or 1 unit.
Examines the design of anthropological research; covers the philosophical basis of research design, different approaches to framing questions and designing research, sampling, questionnaire design, data collection techniques, research ethics, coding, and general problems of measuring quantitative and qualitative data. Prerequisite: Anthropology 220, 230, 240, or 270; or consent of instructor. 3 hours, or 3/4 or 1 unit.
Examines strategies for the discovery and exploration of patterning in quantitative anthropological data. Emphasis on the philosophy of data analysis, exploratory and computer-intensive methods, and hands-on application to the analysis and interpretation of real data sets collected by the students. 4 hours or 1 unit.
Examines strategies for the exploration and analysis of anthropological data in the form of words and documents. Emphasizes the hands-on application of these strategies to the analysis and interpretation of real data sets collected by the students. Covers data reduction; text management and retrieval; coding; within-, between-, and cross-case analyses; data matrices; critical analysis of anthropological documents; content analysis; validity and reliability issues; and the preparation of research reports. 4 hours or 1 unit.
Designed for archaeology students who wish to master a selection of the most common advanced methods for the analysis of archaeological data. Covers database design, how to make CAD drawings from field sketches, seriation methods, cluster analysis, correspondence analysis, stratigraphy by the Harris method, and the calibration and interpretation of radiocarbon dates. 4 hours or 1 unit.
This seminar examines archaeological perspectives on war and draws on a wide range of case studies from prehistoric village raids to the Little Big Horn, the Battle of the Somme, and the recent invasion of Iraq. We consider the contributions and objectives of conflict archaeology, battlefield archaeology, and forensic archaeology, and evaluate archaeology’s potential contributions to the understanding and interpretation of human conflicts that transcend the level of individual violence. Final grades will be based on a term paper, in-class presentations, and active informed participation in seminar discussions.