Academic Field Trip Seminar

Course Description: 

The Consultation course is mandatory for the one-year MA students and for the two-year MA first year students and optional for first year PhD students.

The Academic Field Trip’s credits apply to the preparation for the annual academic field trip to important archaeological and cultural monuments in the region of Central Europe (usually 5-6 days). The course is divided into four main parts. By the beginning of the Winter Semester, students are provided with a list of Excursion Topics (40-45 topics relevant to the actual field trip), out of which they choose one for their research. In 4 weeks time, each student is required to submit a working bibliography of 10-15 items which contains the basic, introductory, crucial, or sole information on the topic. In the second phase of the preparation, each student reviews the material he/she has collected and prepares an annotated bibliography or a structured bibliography. In the third stage of the preparatory work students write an excursion paper (700-900 words). Finally, at the end of the Winter Semester, these excursion papers are gathered into a Field Trip Booklet, which all students receive for the trip. During the trip, each student makes a 10-15 minute oral presentation on his/her research, designed to supplement the written excursion paper.

Course outline

Weeks 1-4                   Preparation of the bibliography

Weeks 5-10                 Writing of the excursion paper

Weeks 11-12               Feedback and revision of the papers and editing of the field trip booklet

Field trip                     Oral presentation of the chosen topic

Learning Outcomes: 

During this course students get familiar with the history and cultural heritage of the region to be visited and prepare short essays for the field trip booklet, on the basis of critical reading of existing scholarship. This provides them opportunity to review scholarly literature (often on subjects that are not familiar to the students from their earlier studies, and sometimes in unfamiliar languages) and transform information into a reader-friendly format.

Assessment: 

In each phase of the course, students are required to have regular contact with the course instructors, and with the faculty members responsible for the given topic. This involves feedback from the faculty on the students’ work (suggestions for modifying or extending the bibliography, re-structuring the paper, controlling the factual information content, etc.).

There is no common compulsory reading, because the students have to compile the bibliography and read the relevant literature individually.

Prerequisites: 

This course is a pre-requisite of participating in the Academic Field Trip that is mandatory for 1YMA and first year 2YMA students of the Medieval Studies Department.