Archaeology covers a broad range of topics, from the evolution of humans through the development of farming, ancient societies, and world empires, to heritage in modern societies. Students can choose to specialise in Archaeology (covering all world cultures), Biological Anthropology, Egyptology or Assyriology.

Cambridge is one of the largest centres of archaeological research in Britain and draws on the combined resources of the Division of Archaeology and the McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research. We have recently been awarded top place in the Good University Guide for Archaeology in the UK. Archaeology students at Cambridge benefit from direct hands-on access to world-class collections in Cambridge’s many museums, libraries and research centres. 2017 was the first year of our new undergraduate degree programme in single honours Archaeology and we look forward to welcoming more students onto this exciting course.

Archaeology is a broad field allowing specialism in many subject areas: the course encourages study of topics ranging across the humanities, the social sciences and the sciences. Students with almost any combination of subjects can apply; there are no required or recommended courses. We welcome applications from students studying humanistic fields such as History, English, Classics, and ancient languages, social sciences such as Geography, Sociology, Psychology, or Anthropology, and sciences such as Biology, Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics. Applicants for Egyptology and Assyriology should be enthusiastic about studying languages.

Admissions Information

Standard Offer:

A-level - A*AA; IB - 776 at Higher Level, 42 points overall; Advanced Highers: A1A2A2; other exam systems.

Course Requirements:

No specific subjects required. The course page on the university website gives details of what subjects Archaeology students have studied.

Applicants are not expected to have any standard background in archaeology, as the field is highly varied, there are many relevant backgrounds and the subject is often not taught in schools; however, if invited to interview, they should be prepared to discuss their relevant interests and potential directions they may wish to follow.

Course Outline: Further course details are available on the Department's website.
Applying: For information on how to apply: University application process and Emmanuel application timeline.

Submitted Work:

Applicants will be asked (following receipt of their application) to submit one piece of written work (on a literary or historical subject), with a word limit of up to 1,500 words. The work can be extracted from coursework or an EPQ. All work must be original and not re-written or corrected for Cambridge. The deadline for submission will be early November.

Admissions Assessment:

All applicants, who are shortlisted for interview, will take a written assessment based on the reading of material that we will supply. This hour-long assessment is designed to assess the ability to interpret texts and to write. Again, no special preparation or prior knowledge is required. An assessment specification is available online. The College's Admissions Officer will register applicants for the assessment. Date of assessment: to be confirmed.

Interviews: Candidates should normally expect two interviews. The interviews will take place during the period Monday 9 - Wednesday 18 December 2024. Specific subject dates will be emailed to applicants in November.

Course Enquiries:

Emmanuel Admissions Office