Richard Hancox – MA Cultural Archaeology (Part-time)

Part-time MA Cultural Archaeology student, Richard Hancox, tells us more about his experience studying at the University of Birmingham.

richard-hancoxWhy did you choose Archaeology at the University of Birmingham?

“I have always been interested in prehistory, and having recently taken early retirement and undertaken an archaeological dig in the summer, I was fired up to learn more and so jumped at the chance to study Cultural Archaeology at Master’s level at the University of Birmingham.”

What has been the highlight of your course?

“I have enjoyed most the social aspects of the course – discussions with fellow students of all age, the field trip to Avebury and a guest lecture of the student Archaeology society on Stonehenge. I have also enjoyed the compulsory elements of the course: learning about archaeological theory, material culture and funerary archaeology; as well as having flexibility to study areas of personal interest including the development of towns and coinage in the Iron Age; and I am choosing a dissertation topic to focus on the Beaker People in Britain”.

What have you learnt from your programme?

“I have learnt a lot about the necessary theoretical and methodological approaches to archaeology and how these have developed over time; as well as interpretations concerning material culture and prehistoric burials, including issues of gender, ethnicity, status and identity. This fits well with the practical archaeology that I continue to pursue outside of the MA programme.”

What is life like as a student at the University of Birmingham?

“Birmingham is an impressive modern University including an attractive new ‘green heart’ to the campus, which takes seriously student welfare and support (including paid placement opportunities) whilst supporting academic achievement. It has excellent facilities (the main library is second to none I have visited) and runs some extremely helpful workshops for students - including for example - academic writing skills courses aimed at those transitioning back to academia.”

Find out more about the MA Cultural Archaeology over on our course pages.