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Basic underwater archaeology course

Basic underwater archaeology course

The International Centre for Underwater Archaeology (ICUA) in Zadar organizes international courses in underwater archaeology every year. These courses are designed to provide practical and theoretical training to candidates who wish to work independently or as part of a team in the field of underwater archaeology. The courses consist of a theoretical segment and practical work that is supervised by experienced underwater archaeologists from ICUA Zadar.

Candidates can choose from several courses, including Basic Underwater Archaeology Course, Advanced Underwater Archaeology Course, ICUA Field School, Nautical Archaeology Society Course, and Underwater Photogrammetry Course.

All course participants receive their own copy of the guide to Principles and Practice in Underwater Archaeology as well as the latest issue of the Submerged Heritage magazine, which is published by ICUA Zadar.

At the end of the course, candidates take an exam in both the theoretical and practical components, after which they are awarded a certificate of completion.

Basic course

The Basic Underwater Archaeology Course is a two-week training program offered by the International Centre for Underwater Archaeology (ICUA) in Croatia.

The course is designed to provide participants with the fundamental knowledge and skills needed to conduct underwater archaeological research. The course is part of ICUA's efforts to promote the protection, management, and study of underwater cultural heritage.

The course will cover a range of topics, including the history and development of underwater archaeology, techniques for locating and documenting submerged sites, methods for excavating underwater sites, and strategies for conserving and interpreting underwater sites and artifacts.

The course will consist of both classroom lectures and practical fieldwork, with participants having the opportunity to participate in a real underwater archaeological project. The Course is open to students, professionals, and individuals who are related to underwater cultural heritage or have a specific interest in the field of underwater archaeology. This includes but is not limited to archaeologists, historians, conservationists, and museum professionals.

Overall, the Basic Underwater Archaeology Course is a valuable opportunity for individuals to gain foundational knowledge and skills in the field of underwater archaeology.

After the course, participants are expected to be diving proficient and to have basic practical insight in underwater archaeological techniques.

The theoretical segment of the course will cover:

  • ICUA Zadar – Mission, Organisation, and Recent activities
  • Introduction to Underwater archaeology in Croatia
  • Introduction to Methodology of Underwater Archaeology
  • Introduction to 2D underwater documentation
  • Introduction to 3D underwater documentation
  • Introduction to Conservation and restoration of underwater finds
  • Organization of underwater archaeological excavations

The practical segment of the course will cover:

  • Orientation on site - exercises: 90°, 120° and 180°
  • Survey exercises
  • Assembly of grid for archaeological excavation
  • Underwater photo documentation of a trench and a site
  • Methods of underwater 2D documentation
  • Use of water pump and hoses
  • Underwater use of water dredge in a trench excavation
  • Packing, labeling and transport of the artifacts
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