Universiteit Leiden

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Applied Archaeology (MA)

The master’s specialisation in Applied Archaeology offers you a brand-new academic programme to start your professional career in archaeology. This unique specialisation is a collaboration of Leiden University and Saxion University of Applied Sciences.

Daudi Cijntje


Daudi Cijntje

"I decided to pursue the master Applied Archaeology, because it’s my aim to become a project leader in the near future and without a master degree leadership positions in fieldwork are difficult to attain. Being from Curaçaoan descent, it was important for me to specialize in Caribbean archaeology during the master programme. My wish is to co-create archaeological projects with ABCSSS communities, in order to safeguard our heritage for future generations."

Richard Jansen


Richard Jansen

“Applied Archaeology at Leiden University provides you with the best programme you can possibly begin your career with. Do you want to be a field archaeologist working in the Netherlands? In Applied Archaeology you can choose Dutch case studies and make your assignments in Dutch."

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What does this master's programme entail?

Applied Archaeology will teach you:

  • How to execute critical and reflective research in a professional context;
  • To develop a sense of how archaeology and heritage management are intertwined;
  • How to apply prospective and excavation methods and give professional advice on the results of (prospective) research;
  • To take into account the academic, societal, ethical and financial considerations of a project;
  • How to present archaeological information to a variety of stakeholders;
  • The best ways to contribute to societal debates and to the future of archaeology.

You will not merely be an archaeology student at our Faculty; you will be part of a lively, multifaceted and international community. Through direct and personal access to researchers experienced in archaeology and heritage you will improve your archaeological skill set, while forming and expanding your academic perspective on archaeological techniques. The MA Applied Archaeology offers a perfect blend of theory and practice.

Forging your own path

In Applied Archaeology, you follow your personal interests, and choose a matching career profile and regional focus. Depending on your profile, you can choose to write your assignments of the Applied-courses, as well as the graduation project, in English or Dutch. What kind of archaeologist will you become? Will you focus on fieldwork, on policy-making, public archaeology, or rather on heritage management? In the Applied Archaeology programme you get to plot your own course!

See the programme for information on how to integrate the choices into your master's programme.

Job market perspectives

Through the courses you choose, you define which type of career in professional archaeology you want to pursue. Within Applied Archaeology you will develop skills and knowledge essential for a variety of archaeological careers. Whatever kind of archaeologist you want to become, Applied Archaeology gives you the best start!

See the job market perspectives on the programme structure website.

Why Applied Archaeology at Leiden University?

  • Benefit from our wide range of expertise. Match your preferred archaeological interests with one of the many regions we lecture on.
  • Study at a Faculty that has quite rightly earned a place in the top ten of archaeology research and teaching institutes in the world.
  • Be part of our large network in national and international research and in professional archaeology.
  • Gain a solid basis for a career in archaeology, heritage management or heritage policy.
  • Get the best of both worlds through the unique partnership of Leiden University and Saxion University of Applied Sciences.
  • Improve your practical skills in our cutting-edge laboratories.

More reasons to study Applied Archaeology at Leiden University.

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