School of History, Classics & Archaeology

Archaeology programmes accredited by professional bodies

Accreditation recognises degrees that provide relevant professional skills needed for a career in the historic environment sector.

The University of Edinburgh has joined the prestigious list of institutions to have its archaeology programmes accredited by the Chartered Institute for Archaeologists (CIfA) and University Archaeology UK (UAUK). 

Why accreditation?

Dr Jon Henderson, Head of Archaeology at the University of Edinburgh expressed delight at the accreditation stating, “Not only does this recognise the breadth of teaching at Edinburgh but also it solidifies our commitment to supporting students who want to develop a career in the archaeology and the historic environment sectors.”

Completing an accredited degree is widely recognised as the first step on a career pathway leading to professional status. Students on accredited programmes can have free student membership of the Chartered Institute for Archaeologists (CIfA) during the time they’re studying for their degree and can then convert this into professional accreditation when they graduate.

Round orange logo with white writing reading UAUK and CIFA accredited degree

CIfA and UAUK accreditation has been awarded to the following Edinburgh Archaeology UG degrees (following the pathways through the core modules): 

  • MA Archaeology
  • MA Archaeology and Social Anthropology
  • MA Archaeology and Ancient History
  • MA Ancient Mediterranean Civilisations
  • MA History and Archaeology

Accredited degree programmes include training in relevant skills for a career in the historic environment and embed professional standards into their teaching. There is greater emphasis on ensuring that graduates are equipped for the workplace should they wish to pursue a career in archaeology, so students on accredited degree programmes can gain the skills and knowledge that employers in the sector value.

Fostering ties

As well as providing a career route for the historic environment, the accreditation is intended to foster strong relations between industry and academia. Vicki Cummings and Andrew Gardner, Joint chairs of University Archaeology UK (UAUK) said “Accreditation is an exciting new initiative for students taking archaeology courses at universities and for the profession more widely. It recognises the value of real knowledge of working practices across the sector by students across the UK.  It is excellent to see a second Scottish department receive accreditation, ensuring that students across the country are able to benefit from this scheme.”

Peter Hinton, the CIfA Chief Executive, added “We are delighted to be able to accredit Edinburgh’s defined CIfA/UAUK-accredited pathway through the core modules of their archaeology undergraduate degree programmes. Accreditation of degree programmes by CIfA and UAUK provides an invaluable way for students to identify those courses which should provide them with the skills that the profession and employers value, and this accreditation highlights the University of Edinburgh’s important contribution to the skills elements of Scotland’s Archaeology Strategy.”


Studying archaeology at the University of Edinburgh

Find out more about Scotland's Archaeology Strategy

Dr Jon Henderson's staff profile