Methods in underwater archaeology +
- Cartography and the different types of underwater surveys.
It includes the theoretical learning of methods and techniques used in the location and of underwater findings, taking into account the environment in which they are found, depth, salinity, turbidity, .... Different types of nautical and terrestrial maps useful in underwater surveying are studied.
- The excavation: from the configuration to the documentation.
It includes the theoretical learning of the methods and techniques used in the excavation of underwater findings, taking into account the kind of environment in which they are found. Emphasis is placed on excavation processes, two and three dimensional graphic documentation, etc.
- From the dig to the lab: conservation and restauration of submerged artefacts.
This module aims to show the use of analytical techniques from chemistry, physics, biology and earth sciences for archaeological and conservation issues in underwater materials. The classes introduce some of the most innovative scientific methods used in underwater archaeology, employing case studies. By studying this course, students will be prepared to read published research, and will be provided with basic knowledge of some analytical techniques that they could later study in detail.Contents referring to different types or ways of building wooden boats, from prehistory to medieval times, are studied including Greek and Roman know how.
- The post excavation processes: studying, publishing and valorising.
This module aims to show the use of analytical techniques from chemistry, physics, biology and earth sciences for archaeological and conservation issues in underwater materials. The classes introduce some of the most innovative scientific methods used in underwater archaeology, employing case studies. By studying this course, students will be prepared to read published research, and will be provided with basic knowledge of some analytical techniques that they could later study in detail.
- Legal protection for Underwater Cultural Heritage.
An introduction to the main characteristics of the underwater heritage is included, basic knowledge about the related laws at all levels: international (UNESCO), Spanish (Ley de Patrimonio Histórico Español, Ley de Costas) o regional (cultural heritage laws in the spanish autonomous communities).
- Professional development.
The subject of archeology as a profession, public and private management of underwater archeology is addressed, as well as the organization of companies or other figures (e.g. cooperatives) where underwater archaeologist could work.
Coastal and maritime archaeology +
- The History of underwater archaeology
The recovery of sunken artifacts was practiced form ancient times, but maritime archaeology as a science was only born mid XXth century in order to protect the underwater cultural heritage. The students will be taught the history of the discipline and its main actors. It will focus on when it was born and why. The case of Spain will be explained in depth as an example. This topic will end with an overview of the future prospects of underwater archaeology.
- The different types of underwater archaeological sites
Throughout this topic the students will learn about the multiplicity of underwater archaeological sites (all different types of shipwrecks, other types of wrecks like plains, submerged structures as harbours or bridges, submerged cities, isolated finds).
- The specificity of sites in deep waters, high lakes, intertidal areas and land
Underwater archaeology can take place in very diverse environments, each one posing different challenges. The ones presented in this block are particularly problematic due to the accessibility to the archaeological remains or the issues inherent to diving, among others. There will also be reminded that maritime archaeologists often work on land too (drained harbours, ship burials...)
- Ancient harbours and coastal geomorphology:
The coastline is an extremely dynamic area affected by the erosion caused by sea, the sedimentary deposits brought by rivers, tectonic movements and volcanic activity. This has impacted coastal structures such as harbours throughout history. Notions on coastal dynamics, the change in the coastline over time and how to study them will be addressed in this block.
- Naval architecture: the basics.
Contents referring to different types or ways of building wooden boats, from prehistory to medieval times, are studied including Greek and Roman know how.
- Trade products and other cargoes
A ship was freighted for three main reasons: travel, trade and war. In this block students will learn about the contents of the shipwrecks studied by underwater archaeology: commercial products such as amphorae, warfare equipment such as canons, and remains that did not subsist but are essential to the knowledge of History, such as slaves.
Block 1: Underwater survey. Description: Underwater survey exercises will start with the topographic delimitation of research area, which will be systematically recognized and surveyed by the students. The archaeological goal of these exercises will be to try to locate an area with remains of dolia sherds and to try to give an explanation whether it is a wreck from Roman times, an old port warehouse area (today submerged) or even a drag, from the coast, by torrential river currents.
Block 2: The underwater excavation. Description: includes the design and mounting of excavation logistics, such as water dredges. A sector near the main underwater harbor structure will be excavated and record.
A grid will be made and placed to divide the space by m2. Students will excavate the sector applying the horizontal layer methodology, where the archaeological finds will be positioned and tag numbered. Archaeological record drawings will be made at 1:10 scale and if marine visibility allows, photogrammetric record may be done. Archaeological finds will be removed to the surface, where they will be inventoried. They will be temporary stored, and students will carry on the beginning of the desalination process.
Final essay +