Course syllabus


Anthro 101 World Archaeology

Welcome to Anthro 101!  World prehistory over the last 2 million years.

dentate pottery.jpg

Lapita Pottery from SE-RF-2 in the

Reef Islands (Solomon Islands) 2900 cal BP

Excavated by Prof. Roger Green

(Dept of Anthropology) in 1976

 Contact information

Prof. Peter J. Sheppard

Ph 09373-7441 ext: 88572


Office Hour Wed 3PM HSB 719

Lecture Times

Days & Times


Meeting Dates

Tu 16:00 - 17:00
Th 12:00 - 13:00

260-073 (Owen G Glenn, Room 073)



Matthew Barrett

  • Office hour: Mon 3-4.30pm, HSB 656
    If you cannot make this time, please email to arrange an appointment 


Sabah Moughal

  • Office hour: Tuesday 11- 1 pm, HSB 650
    If you cannot make this time, please email to arrange an appointment 



Tutorial Times

CHECK SSO For times

If you cannot attend your regular tutorial during a particular week, you are encouraged to attend a different tutorial to ensure you don't miss out on any content and you get full attendance marks.


Course description

This course is a survey of World archaeology from the emergence of culture over 2 million years ago in Africa, through the development of food production in the Near East, Asia and the Americas  and the rise of the first cities and States in Mesopotamia, China and the Americas. We conclude with a survey of the last great human adventure which was the settlement of Oceania ending in Polynesia and New Zealand


Learning outcomes

Upon successful completion of the course, students should be able to:.


At the end of the course you are expected to have grounding in human cultural evolution over the last 2 million years. You will be able to discuss the following topics:

  • The difference between modern theories of cultural evolution and earlier ideas of unilineal cultural evolution
  • The significant developments that led to the emergence of modern humans from our archaic ancestors
  • Social and cultural changes associated with the domestication of plants and animals
  • Changes that accompanied the beginnings of social complexity
  • The significance of the rise of complex society
  • Methods (excavation, dating, etc.) used to find and analyse archaeological materials


In your discussion of these topics, you will be expected to use examples drawn from a number of locations from around the world. You will be expected to write about these topics in essays and to be able to answer specific questions in short answer or multi-choice format. You will also be required to attend tutorials and participate in tutorial discussion


 Late Essay Policy

For the essay, the late penalties are as follows:

With a medical/counsellor's certificate:
You don't lose any marks, but the maximum extension is 14 days (including weekends and public holidays). Please attach a pdf of the med cert onto your essay. No need to contact your lecturer or tutor.

Without a medical certificate/counsellor's certificate:
You lose one half grade per week, up to a maximum of 14 days (including weekends and public holidays).
For example, if you submit your essay 4 days late and you earn a B+, your grade will change to a B. If you submit it 10 days late, your grade will change from B+ to B-. If you submit your work more than 14 days late, your work will not be marked.



Due date(s)

Week number

Tutorial tasks




In-class test



Week 5




Week 9

Final exam




Course Points

15.0 Points



 Student Field school Great Mercury/Ahuahu Island

Course summary:

Date Details