Course description and syllabus

CLST 361: GIS and Mediterranean Archaeology

 

 'I reserve the right to adjust this syllabus as necessary'

 

Prof. Pedar W. Foss: Tel. 658-4597; pfoss@depauw.edu

Office Hours (EC 303):  MWF 2:45-4:30

 

Fall 2003 Class: Tues + Thurs, 2-3:50 pm Indiana time

CGMA lab (Julian 107)

In the Eastern Time zone (Wooster), the class meets:

1st half of term (before Oct. 26): 3-4:50 pm

2nd half of term (after Oct. 26): 2-3:50 pm

 

In the Central Time zone (Rhodes, Millsaps), the class meets:

1st half of term (before Oct. 26): 2-3:50 pm

2nd half of term (after Oct. 26): 1-2:50 pm

 

CDS (Course Delivery Service) at: http://cds.colleges.org/dev/login.php

 

Introduction:

This course is the seminar associated with CGMA, a Collaboratory for GIS (Geographic Information Systems) and Mediterranean Archaeology funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and headquartered at DePauw University. The CGMA project uses an inter-institutional, interdisciplinary program of undergraduate seminars, summer research internships, student-faculty workshops and work-study grants to begin construction of a Web-based Geographic Information System for archaeological field survey projects. Being the first Mediterranean-wide GIS registry of this kind, it provides a functional framework for broad studies of the interactions of humans and their environment in antiquity.

Organization:

This upper-level undergraduate seminar (limit: 3-4 students at each of the 4 campuses) is held every fall term from 2003-2006. The primary locus of instruction and the supervising professor rotates annually amongst the 4 campuses, beginning with DePauw University in fall 2003, with the remaining schedule to be determined.

Sessions are held in person at the institution of the supervising professor, and conducted in real time over the Internet for students from the other institutions. A course delivery system ('CDS') developed by the Technology Center of the Associated Colleges of the South serves as the means to webcast class sessions to the other institutions, to post discussion questions and answers, results of the practicum, and as a forum for communication between the students at participating institutions. Its address is: http://cds.colleges.org/dev/login.php


Course Description:

This course introduces advanced undergraduates to methods, theories and practice in:

-      Primary (field or lab) and secondary (library) research in archaeological survey;

-      Archaeology and information technology, especially GIS.

 

There are three major pedagogical components: (a) weekly lectures on history, method and theory, while students engage in readings and discussion; (b) a multi-stage practicum on survey and GIS which students on each participating campus do in small groups; (c) individual projects which put the teaching and training to work in the construction of the CGMA resource.

The supervising professor and all participating students meet twice a week for instruction, problem-solving and real-time discussion; students also share ideas, questions, problems, research strategies and results over the CDS. Once during the term, participating faculty and students, as well as visiting experts, meet for a workshop at that year's host institution. For their individual project, each student works on a component of CGMA based on their interests, their expertise, and the needs of the project. Computer science students can work on database, GIS or Internet delivery programming under the supervision of the project programmer; students in classical studies, anthropology, geography, etc, can work on collecting, organizing and assessing archaeological survey metadata from specific Mediterranean regions. At the end of the term, each student writes a 3-page reflective summary of their learning process and their work product, and provides the specific programming or data that they have developed during the term.

NOTE: Students who successfully complete the course are eligible to apply for work-study on the project the following Spring term, and for a research internship during the following summer, funded through the CGMA grant and the participating institutions.

Grading:

45%     Participation

10% in-class and CDS (Web) discussion

10% mid-term workshop at DePauw

25% group practicum

45%     Individual Project

10%     3-page Reflective Summary

 

Readings:

- Textbook: Wheatley, D. & Gillings, M., Spatial Technology and Archaeology (London, Taylor & Francis 2002), ISBN: 0415246407

- Additional readings available on-line and through the CDS (http://cds.colleges.org/dev/login.php)

- Each library should have copies of some recent survey publications from the Mediterranean area to which students can refer as models. They need not be the same at each campus. When students begin working on their individual projects, however, they need to order such publications using interlibrary loan.

 

Schedule (two ca.110-min. meetings per week):

All readings are available on-line, on electronic reserve through the CDS, or on reserve at the library of each school. Do all readings before the class period on which they are listed.


Wk. 1: Thurs., 28 Aug.: Introduction.

Introduction to archaeological survey, GIS and CGMA;
link to examples of on-line GIS in class:

- http://plasma.nationalgeographic.com/mapmachine/index.html (interactive atlas of the world)

- http://hud.esri.com/emaps/SearchFrame.asp (public environmental information via an Housing and Urban Development interactive atlas)

- http://ads.ahds.ac.uk/catalogue/index.cfm (site and data management from the Archaeological Data Service Catalog for Britain)
-
http://pasture.ecn.purdue.edu/~rauhn/ (Rough Cilicia Survey Project; GIS emulator, etc., on-line)

QUESTION: Why is there no example of a fully operational, stable and interactive archaeological GIS on the Web for a site or a region?

 

Wk. 2: Tues., 2 Sept.: Rationale and Resources.

Wheatley & Gillings, Ch. 1, 'Archaeology, Space and GIS,' 1-21; Wise, A. and Miller, P., 'Why metadata matters in archaeology,' Internet Archaeology (vol. 2, 1997);[1] CGMA Grant in .pdf format, at: http://acad.depauw.edu/~cgma/Documents/CGMA-II.pdf [52 pgs.]

- Individual project areas and topics are assigned to students (see below).

- During the second half of class, students participate in a library research session to learn the tools and resources for locating and acquiring book and journal publications for projects at their local libraries.

 

Thurs., 4 Sept.: Approaches to archaeological survey: theory and technique.

Flannery, K., (ed.) The early Mesoamerican village (San Diego 1976) 1-8, 131-136, 159-162, 283-286, and 369-373; Ammerman, Albert J., 'Surveys and Archaeological Research,' Annual Review of Anthropology (vol. 10, 1981), 63-88.[2] [45 pgs.]

 

On this day, the practicum assignment is introduced. Each group of students presents Stage 1 of the practicum one week later.

 

Wk. 3: Tues., 9 Sept.: Approaches to archaeological survey: motive and meaning.

Barker, G., 'Approaches to Mediterranean Landscape History,' Ch. 1 in A Mediterranean Valley (Leicester 1995) 1-16; J. L. Davis (ed.), 'Introduction' and Ch. 10 in Sandy Pylos (Texas 1998) xxix-xliii, 273-291. [48 pgs.]

 

Thurs., 11 Sept.: Presentations of Practicum Stage 1: Formulating research questions, choosing an area and developing a survey strategy.

Each campus team has 15 min. to present the first stage of their practicum, with the rest of the time for questions, critiques and discussion.

 

Wk. 4: Tues., 16 Sept.: Archaeological methods: sampling, data collection and databases.[3]

Plog, S., F. Plog, and W. Wait, 'Decision Making in Modern Surveys,' in M. Schiffer (ed.), Advances in Archaeological Method and Theory vol. I (New York 1978) 383-421; Barker, G., 'The Biferno Valley Survey: Methodologies' Ch.3 in A Mediterranean Valley (Leicester 1995) 40-61. [55 pgs.]
in-class tutorial: http://www.colleges.org/~turkey/module2002/2survey/page01.html
                           login: turkey             password: ACS2003

 

Thurs., 18 Sept.: Presentations of Practicum Stage 2: Developing a collection strategy and designing a database.

Each campus team has 15 min. to present this stage of their practicum, with the rest of the time for questions, critiques and discussion.

 

Wk. 5: Tues., 23 Sept.: Archaeological survey data analysis and interpretation.
Trigger, Bruce G., 'The determinants of settlement patterns,' in K. C. Chang (ed.), Settlement Archaeology (Palo Alto 1968) 53-78; Bintliff, J. and Sbonias, K., 'Demographic and ceramic analysis in regional survey,' in R. Francovich and H. Patterson (eds.), Extracting meaning from ploughsoil assemblages (Oxbow 1999) 244-258; Alcock, Susan E., 'Breaking up the Hellenistic world: survey and society,' in I. Morris (ed.), Classical Greece: ancient histories and modern archaeologies (Cambridge 1994) 171-190. [53 pgs.]

 

Thurs., 25 Sept.: Reading and critiquing archaeological survey publications.
Cherry, J., 'Regional survey in the Aegean: the 'new wave' (and after),' in P. Nick Kardulias (ed.), Beyond the site: regional studies in the Aegean area (Lanhame 1994) 91-112; [14 pgs.]

 

In class we examine survey publications from around the Mediterranean: one print publication (e.g. Cherry, J. F., J. L. Davis, and E. Mantzourani, Landscape archaeology as long-term history: northern Keos in the Cycladic islands (Los Angeles, UCLA Monograph Series, vol. 16, 1991), esp. chs. 1-3 (1-54), 9 (217-232), 17 (327-347), 22 (455-479); Barker, G., Gilbertson, D., Jones, B. and Mattingly, D. [eds.] Farming the Desert: the UNESCO Libyan Valleys Archaeological Survey [UNESCO Publishing, Paris; Department of Antiquities, Tripoli; Society for Libyan Studies, London 1996; vols. I-II]; The Pylos Regional Archaeological Project, online edition: http://classics.uc.edu/prap/), and consider how we might extract metadata for CGMA from each of them.

 

Wk. 6: Tues., 30 Sept.: Presentations of Practicum Stage 3: Conducting the survey.

Each campus team has 15 min. to present this stage of their practicum, with the rest of the time for questions, critiques and discussion.


Thurs., 2 Oct.: Archaeology and technology: GIS I (a case study).
V. Gaffney and Z. Stancic, GIS approaches to regional analysis: a case study of the island of Hvar (Ljubljana 1991). Text at:
http://www.arch-ant.bham.ac.uk/research/vince/contents.htm [78 pgs.]

 

Wk. 7: Tues., 7 Oct.: Archaeology and technology: GIS II (data categories).

Wheatley & Gillings, Ch. 2, 'The Spatial Database', 23-58; Ramenofsky, A. F., 'The illusion of time,' Wandsnider, L., 'Regional scale processes and archaeological landscape units,' in A. Ramenofsky and A. Steffen (eds.) Unit issues in archaeology: measuring time, space, and material (Salt Lake City 1998) 74-102. [61 pgs.]

 

Thurs., 9 Oct.: Presentations of Practicum Stage 4: Mapping the results (on paper).

Each campus team has 15 min. to present this stage of their practicum (having posted scanned maps), with the rest of the time for questions, critiques and discussion.

 

 

Fri-Sun, 10-12 Oct.: Weekend workshop, at DePauw University
- Students from the four different schools meet and compare their projects and progress.
- Students participate in a tutorial/workshop for ArcView GIS 8.x, and have the opportunity to troubleshoot their own projects (both group and individual).
- Meeting of the CGMA advisory board; students get to Ôsit in' on the meeting.

 

Wk. 8: 14 Oct.: no class held; Wooster is on fall break.

 

Thurs., 16 Oct.: Archaeology and technology: GIS III (map data).

Wheatley & Gillings, Ch. 3, 'Acquiring and Integrating Data', 59-87; R. E, Witcher, 'GIS and landscapes of perception,' in M. Gillings, D. Mattingly and J. van Dalen (eds.), Geographical Information Systems and Landscape Archaeology (Oxbow 1999) 13-22. [35 pgs.]

 

21 and 23 Oct.: no class held; DePauw, Millsaps and Rhodes are on fall break.

 

Wk. 9: Tues., 28 Oct.: Archaeology and technology: GIS IV (data management).

Wheatley & Gillings, Ch. 4, 'Manipulating Spatial Data', 89-106; Farley, J.A., W. Frederick Limp, and J. Lockhart, 'The archaeologist's workbench: integrating GIS, remote sensing, EDA and database management,' in Allen, Green, and Zubrow (eds.), Interpreting space: GIS and archaeology (London 1990) 141-164 [38 pgs.]

Thurs., 30 Oct.: Archaeology and technology: GIS V (data visualization)
Wheatley & Gillings, Ch. 5, 'Digital Elevation Models' and Ch. 10, 'Visibility analysis and archaeology,' 107-124, 201-216; M. Gillings, 'Flood dynamics and settlement in the Tisza valley of north-east Hungary: GIS and the Upper Tisza Project,' in G. Lock and Z. Stancic (eds.), Archaeology and Geographical Information Systems
(London 1995) 67-84. [49 pgs.]

 

Wk. 10: Tues., 4 Nov.: Presentations of Practicum, Stage 5: Integration of the survey map and database in a GIS.

Each campus team has 15 min. to present this stage of their practicum (having posted files to the CDS), with the rest of the time for questions, critiques and discussion.

 

Thurs., 6 Nov.: Archaeology and technology: GIS VI (data quantification).

Wheatley & Gillings, ch. 6, 'Beginning to Quantify Spatial Patterns', pp. 125-146; Gillings, M. and E. Zubrow, 'Regional Survey and GIS: the Boeotia Project,' in M. Gillings, D. Mattingly and J. van Dalen (eds.), Geographical Information Systems and Landscape Archaeology (Oxbow 1999) 35-54. [39 pgs.]

 

Wk. 11: Tues., 11 Nov.: Archaeology and technology: GIS VII (data analysis and explanation).

Wheatley & Gillings, Ch. 7, 'Sites, Territories and Distance', 147-163; Whitelaw, T., 'Reconstructing a classical landscape with figures: some interpretive explorations in North-West Keos,' in R. Francovich and H. Patterson (eds.), Extracting meaning from ploughsoil assemblages (Oxbow 1999) 227-243. [31 pgs.]

 

Thurs., 13 Nov.: Archaeology and technology: GIS VIII (interpolation and prediction).

Wheatley & Gillings, Chs. 8-9, 'Location Models and Prediction' and 'Trend Surface and Interpolation', 165-200; T. Church, R.J. Brandon and G.R. Burgett, 'GIS application in archaeology: method in search of theory,' in K.L. Wescott and R.J. Brandon (eds.), Practical applications of GIS for archaeologists; a predictive modeling kit (London 2000) 135-155; J. Robinson and E. Zubrow, 'Between spaces: interpolation in archaeology,' in M. Gillings, D. Mattingly and J. van Dalen (eds.), Geographical Information Systems and Landscape Archaeology (Oxbow 1999) 65-83. [67 pgs.]

 

Wk. 12: Tues., 18 Nov.: Presentations of Practicum Stage 6: Visualizing, exploring and analyzing patterns and trends.

Each campus team has 15 min. to present their analyses (having posted illustrations), with the rest of the time for questions, critiques and discussion.

Thurs., 20 Nov.: Current and future issues.

Wheatley & Gillings, Chs. 11-12, 'Cultural Resource Management' and 'Future Directions', 217-245; Kvamme, Kenneth L., 'Recent directions and developments in Geographical Information Systems,' Journal of Archaeological Research (vol. 7, no. 2, 1999) 153-201. [60 pgs.]

 

Wk. 13: Tues., 25 Nov.: Practicum Stage 7: A short report describing the process and principal results of the practicum.

Each campus team has 15 min. to present their final reports (having posted illustrations), with the rest of the time for questions, critiques and discussion.

27 Nov.: no class held; Thanksgiving.

 


Wk. 14: Tues., 2 Dec.: Individual student project reports from DePauw and Millsaps

(pre-posted to the Course Delivery System and then reviewed for c.10 min. by each student + discussion)

Thurs., 4 Dec.: Individual student project reports from Rhodes and Wooster

(pre-posted to the Course Delivery System and then reviewed for c.10 min. by each student + discussion)

 

10 Dec.: Individual project and 3-pg. Reflective summary due

16 Dec.: Grades due

 

Practicum:

The group of students on each of the four campuses is responsible for designing, implementing and analyzing a survey of part of their campus or town (e.g., tombs in a local cemetery; distribution of trash vs. trashcans on campus, etc.). Individual groups will decide during the first weeks of class. There are several stages to the project. As the course unfolds, groups are responsible for reporting on their progress to the rest of the class. (Usually illustrated) reports on each stage should be posted to the CDS forty-eight hours before the assignment is due. Reports should include not just a description of the progress made but also the rationales for specific decisions. Students may look for specific advice and direction from the class professor, or from the CGMA representative on their own campus.

Stage 1: Formulating research questions, choosing an area and developing a survey strategy.
Each group decides on particular questions about human activity or organization that they might be able to answer through the collection of artifactual evidence on the ground. Then they determine the limits of their survey region. This decision should be based on specific research questions that the group wants to answer. The group must also decide on a sampling strategy for that area.

Stage 2: Developing a collection strategy and designing a database.
After selecting their question(s), an area and a sampling strategy, groups decide on a collection strategy. They then design data sheets for the field as well as a computer database.

Stage 3: Conducting the survey.
Students implement the survey they have designed. They then report back to the class on their field experience: what worked and what did not.

Stage 4: Mapping the results.
After data collection is completed and entered, each group creates a preliminary map or maps (on paper) of their survey area. Special consideration should be given to the mode and manner of visualization.

Stage 5: Integrating the survey map and the database in a GIS.
After a tutorial in using ArcView at the fall meeting, students create a ArcView GIS for their survey. They should note both the problems that they encounter as well as new questions that came up during the process.

Stage 6: Visualizing, exploring and analyzing patterns and trends.
Using the GIS as both a tool and an environment, they should sort, visualize, manipulate, and explore their data towards answering their initial research question(s).

Stage 7: Writing a short report describing the process and principal results of the practicum.
It is the responsibility of all archaeologists to disseminate their results. Each group must prepare a short report (ca. 5 pages) that summarizes their practicum, from start to finish. It should explain the data (what are the significant patterns?) and interpret it as well (what do those patterns suggest or mean in the context of understanding human activity, society, and the landscape?).

Course Delivery System (CDS):

Located at: http://cds.colleges.org/dev/login.php, the CDS is a venue for real-time synchronous broadcasting of the course lecturers, with a real-time chat feature for students and faculty, and the ability to post outlines, instructions, images, and links for use before, during and after class. Both the faculty and students use this venue to carry out the class, record what happens in the class, and as a forum for questions and discussion. Designed for inter-institutional courses offered by the ACS in classics and archaeology, the ACS Tech Center has generously volunteered the server for the use of the CGMA course. Logins and passwords will be distributed to each student and faculty member for the CDS.

 

Web-sites of interest:

CASA: Center for Applied Spatial Analysis: http://www.casa.arizona.edu/

GIS Guide to Good Practice (1998) http://ads.ahds.ac.uk/project/goodguides/gis/

GIS in Archaeology Bibliography (1995) >http://www.archaeology.usyd.edu.au/resources/databases/gis_biblio/

Madaba Plains Project: Archaeological Survey Manual (Oct. 1997): http://www.casa.arizona.edu/MPP/surv_man/mppsurv_man.html

VISTA: Visual and Spatial Technology Centre (2003) http://www.vista.bham.ac.uk/arch.htm

 

Individual Project Areas

For this first iteration, areas are assigned to schools as a whole, based initially on expertise of the resident faculty member in a country and/or language:

* DePauw University -- Italy (including Sicily and Sardinia)

* Millsaps College -- The Balkans (Albania, Croatia, Slovenia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Serbia and Montenegro, Macedonia)

* Rhodes College -- Central Europe (Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Czech R., Slovakia, Hungary)

* College of Wooster -- Greece and Cyprus (including Crete)

Individual students can work on specific countries or regions within those zones.

 


Technical requirements for conducting the course

Room

1. The room should have one computer for each student in the class. The computer should be fitted with the browser and media software listed as required on the Course Delivery System Requirements Page (http://cds.colleges.org/dev/docs/requirements.php).

2. The room should have a speakerphone, so that there is a means of communication between the instructor and students in case the network goes out, as well as a means for students to call in when they need to deliver a report. In case of network outage or computer problems, we conduct the class via conference-call.

3. The room should have a large table, and enough space for students to gather around and spread out books and maps

 

Technology

For the class practicum, class assignments and individual projects, students need regular access (either on their own machines or in labs) to:

1. High-speed Internet

2. At least one hand-held GPS receiver (any brand will do; this is for training and practicum purposes. I plan to lend ours to the DePauw students; let us know if you have or if you need such receivers at your schools. If you have a receiver you can use, tell us the brand and model number so we can write up brief instructions for use. We are using a Garmin 12XL at DePauw; if a Garmin model is possible, that would simplify menu hierarchies and instructions.

3. Access to a basic flatbed scanner, to turn paper map documents to digital raster maps.

4. Software for the practicum: word-processing software, drawing software (e.g., Illustrator or Canvas), database software (e.g., Filemaker), and GIS software (ArcView 8.x).

5. Optional: iChat AV for Mac OS X 10.2, microphones (on Macintoshes) if a live video-audio feed is desired during the class period.

 

Other resources (Agreed Cost-sharing provided by each of the four institutions):

1. Travel grants for each institution's students to carry out research in the library of a nearby major university (up to two per student per term) up to $100 each.

2. One work-study student research associate at each participating institution during the spring term to work on the project for 10 hrs./wk. (or two students at 5 hrs./wk. each).

3. Travel allowances for the institution's faculty, students and ([not in 2003] summer interns) attending the mid-term workshop each fall semester.

4. Technology-enhanced classroom space and campus computing facilities for the development of student research projects.

5. Supplements to student summer internships and faculty member supervisory stipends up to institutional norms.

 



[1] http://intarch.ac.uk/journal/issue2/wise_toc.html

[2] On JSTOR, at: http://links.jstor.org/sici?sici=0084-6570%281981%292%3A10%3C63%3ASAAR%3E2.0.CO%3B2-M

[3] Cf. P. Foss, 'Manual for Hacimusalar Survey,' on-line .pdf document at: http://www.choma.org/guides/survey as a methodological reference.