Archaeological Writing for Publication

Course summary

Archaeological Writing for Publication


Writing a good and publishable report is a key skill for archaeologists, but one that can be particularly challenging and hard to learn. This course will introduce the standard types of published reports currently produced by archaeologists, and how the scope and content of a report is planned. The course will then focus on two key components, the stratigraphic narrative and the discussion, and the most effective and successful ways of approaching the planning, writing and illustration of these. This will include a critical review of a number of examples, to identify common mistakes and how to avoid them. We will also look at the special requirements that apply to writing in a professional and academic context. The course is taught by specialists with many years’ experience in writing, editing and managing archaeological reports. It is designed for all those in both the professional and voluntary archaeological sectors who need to develop skills and confidence in report writing. The course will involve some preparatory reading before the training day.

Programme details



8.30 am           Registration and coffee / tea


9.00 am           Welcome and Introduction


9.15 am           Archaeological publication: background and overview


9.30 am           Writing for publication: journal articles and monographs


                        How reports are planned


Journal reports




Digital options


The process


10.45 am         Coffee / tea (30 minutes)       


11.15 am         Writing stratigraphic narrative


11.45 am         Practical exercise: critical evaluation of stratigraphic narratives


12.30 pm         Practical exercise: feedback and discussion, common mistakes and how to

                        avoid them


1.00 pm           Lunch


1.45 pm           Writing a discussion


2.15 pm           Practical exercise: critical evaluation of examples of discussion sections from archaeological reports


2.45 pm           Practical exercise: feedback and discussion, common mistakes and how to avoid them


3.15 pm           Tea / coffee


3.30 pm           Topping and tailing: the introduction and its contents; the title and summary; authorship and acknowledgements


4.00 pm           Writing in an academic and professional context


4.45 pm           Course concludes


National Occupational Standards for Archaeology: Supports the Knowledge requirements for CCSAPAC1 Research and analyse information to achieve objectives


Accommodation is not included in the price, but depending on availability it may be possible to stay at Rewley House the night before the course.  Please contact our Residential Centre on +44 (0) 1865 270362 or email  for details of availability and prices.

Accommodation in Rewley House - all bedrooms are modern, comfortably furnished and each room has tea and coffee making facilities, Freeview television, and Free WiFi and private bath or shower rooms.


Tuition (includes coffee/tea): £215.00
Baguette: £4.40
Hot Lunch: £13.00


Payment of fees must be made in full at the time of booking. Please note that businesses and organisations can be invoiced on provision of a Purchase Order and completed application form. These can be emailed to the CWHE Programme Administrator, email:


Ms Rachel Clarke


Post-Excavation Editor, Oxford Archaeology East

Dr Elizabeth Popescu

Course Director

Elizabeth Popescu is Post-Excavation and Publications Manager at Oxford Archaeology East.  She has considerable experience in managing complex projects and specialises in urban Late Saxon and medieval archaeology, with particular interest in castle and cemetery studies


Please use the 'Book' or 'Apply' button on this page. Alternatively, please contact us to obtain an application form.