Courses & Units

Convict Archaeology Field School HTA282



Students are required to participate in two weeks of online learning then attend a two week field school in Tasmania in January 2019. The latter will include site work involving archaeological excavation. All students will be required to have a current tetanus vaccination (last five years) and be fit enough to engage in fieldwork on remote location.

Students are required to participate in two weeks of online learning from 3-14 December 2018, then attend a two week field school in Tasmania from 20 January – 3 February 2019

In addition to the unit tuition fee an additional field school fee will apply. The additional cost to attend the field school is AUD$1200 per student.

Self-enrolment has been disabled. Please note, this unit does have a quota.

This unit is available for enrolment through the College of Arts, Law and Education online registration process:

Website: Convict Archaeology Field School

Contact: 3 6226 6365


Archaeology has the potential to provide unique insights into our past. This unit focuses on the material traces left in the Tasmanian landscape by some of the 76,000 convicts transported here from Britain and other parts of the then British Empire in the 19th century. After learning online about the wider contexts of convict transportation and archaeological field work, you will take part in an archaeological field school at the site of a former convict probation station. You will be introduced to the latest techniques in excavating historic convict sites. As well as excavating objects, you and your team members will learn how to understand these objects in context, then how to clean, categorise, and store them. Other sources of information about the site’s convict past may also be considered, including maps, plans, and other historical records.


Unit name Convict Archaeology Field School
Unit code HTA282
Credit points 12.5
Faculty/School College of Arts, Law and Education
School of Humanities
Discipline History and Classics

Dr Kristyn Harman

Teaching staff

Dr Kristyn Harman and Professor Eleanor Casella

Available as student elective? Yes
Breadth Unit? No


Location Study period Attendance options Available to
Hobart Summer school (early) Off-Campus International Domestic


International students
Domestic students

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Key Dates

Study Period Start date Census date WW date End date
Summer school (early) 5/11/2018 1/1/2019 31/1/2019 17/2/2019

* The Final WW Date is the final date from which you can withdraw from the unit without academic penalty, however you will still incur a financial liability (see withdrawal dates explained for more information).

Unit census dates currently displaying for 2019 are indicative and subject to change. Finalised census dates for 2019 will be available from the 1st October 2018.

About Census Dates

Learning Outcomes

On successfully completing this unit you will be able to:

  1. Examine and appraise the wider context of convict transportation and systems of punishment and reformation within which convict probation stations operated.
  2. Apply knowledge of, and skills related to, the latest techniques involved in excavating convict sites with reference to best practice.
  3. Demonstrate the ability to clean, categorise, and store objects appropriately.


In addition to the unit tuition fee an additional field school fee will apply. The additional cost to attend the field school is AUD$1200 per student.

The unit tuition fee will be available below shortly.


Band CSP Student Contribution Field of Education
1 2019: $820.00 090307

Fees for next year will be published in October. The fees above only apply for the year shown.

Please note: international students should refer to this page to get an indicative course cost.



25cp at Introductory level in any discipline.


Teaching Pattern

This unit is being delivered as a field school with a fully online component.  Exact dates of delivery will be determined in consultation with the field archaeologist.


2 x online quizzes relating to convict history and archaeology fieldwork (20%);

An onsite daily journal detailing excavation and object curatorial practices (1,500 words) (35%);

A 2,500 word excavation report (45%).

TimetableView the lecture timetable | View the full unit timetable


Booktopia textbook links

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