Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Postgraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2007-2008 (archived)

Module ARCH52915: Geochemistry Prospection

Department: Archaeology

ARCH52915: Geochemistry Prospection

Type Open Level 4 Credits 15 Availability Available in 2007/08
Tied to


  • None


  • None

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • None.


  • To equip the students with a critical appreciation of the methods and theory of geochemical prospection and the practical ability to undertake a geochemical survey.


Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
    Subject-specific Skills:
    • Students will have learned: a working knowledge of the uses of phosphate analysis, trace element analysis, biomarkers in soil, pH, magnetic susceptibility and mineralogical investigation of archaeological deposits
    • practical experience of a combined phosphate and magnetic susceptibility survey
    • gained an critical appreciation of soil chemistry
    Key Skills:

      Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

      • Lectures and tutorials: Phosphate survey; Multi-element analysis of soils; Magnetic susceptibility of soils and sediments; Organic compounds and minerals in soils and sediments
      • Practicals - Magnetic susceptibility and phosphate analysis of survey samples

      Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

      Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
      Lectures 4 weekly 1:00 4
      Tutorials 4 weekly 1:00 4
      Practicals 1 once 1 day 8
      Fieldwork 1 once 1 day 8
      Preparation & Reading
      Other: 126
      Total 150

      Summative Assessment

      Component: Portfolio Component Weighting: 100%
      Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
      Discussion Paper 2,000 words 50%
      Report, comprising the research design, methods and results of a combined phosphate and magnetic susceptibility survey 10 pages max 50%

      Formative Assessment:

      Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University