'Scribble, Scribble, Scribble Mr Gibbon': Publication Beyond the Site Report


Many archaeologists have had experience of writing site reports and many other formal documents in relation to the planning system. Desk Based Assessments, Written Schemes of Investigation, Specifications and Briefs have become so common that the style of these documents is beginning to characterise some excavation reports. Cut and paste techniques provide an easy segue from one report form to another, but what of publication beyond the site report? For those wishing to enhance their CVs and to stand out from the crowd a well-rounded bibliography of published works is a key to career development. This is not all. For many, the reason for taking up archaeology was its intrinsic interest and publication is a way of exploiting and enjoying this potential.

This short course looks at publication ‘beyond the site report’; it focusses on journal articles, book production and at production as means to self-fulfilment.

The course will run on two consecutive mornings. Sessions will be 2 hours, and include time for questions and discussion following the presentations. The sessions will be delivered online via Microsoft Teams, starting at 10.00am UK time each day. There will be time for questions and discussion at the end of each session.

Programme details

Session 1 (Tuesday 8 June 2021)

10:00am – 10:45am Introduction. Why publish?

Introduction or Ask an Editor (a view from the profession)

  • Career advancement and to separate yourself from the crowd?
  • To follow up a particular interest?
  • Continuing Personal Development (CPD),
  • Career enhancement or commercial advantage.
  • Individual research (personal interest or partnership)
  • Case Study (a key stimulant to research is an interesting case study)

10:45 – 11:00 Discussion

11:00 – 11:15 Break

11:15 -12:00 Pathways to Publication: Pitfalls, Practicalities and Proofing

  • Conference sessions or individual papers?
  • Journals papers (peer review and profile)?
  • Book (free/commercial publisher; paid for output)?

12:00-12:30 Discussion

12.30     Session ends

Session 2 Weds 9 June 2021

10.00 -10.45 Journal or Book? A close look at subjects and focus, an opportunity to look back with curiosity at those areas which have provoked debate amongst friends and colleagues, the proposal.

  • Challenging orthodoxy
  • New research
  • Alternative interpretation
  • Revised guidance
  • Subject & How to Plan

10.45-11.00 Discussion

11.00-11.15: Break

11.15-12.00 Submission and Promotion

  • The Writer’s Art - First Draft/Final Draft, Review, Proofing, Promotion

12.00-12:30 Discussion and Proposals

12.30 Course Ends


Dates, Times and Delivery

‘Scribble, Scribble, Scribble Mr Gibbon’: Publication Beyond the Site Report  (Online) course will run over two days, from 8 – 9 June 2021.

Sessions will be 2 hours, delivered online via Microsoft Teams, from 10:00 – 12:30 (UK time).

A world clock, and time zone converter can be found here: https://bit.ly/3bSPu6D

No attendance at Oxford is required and you do not need to purchase any software.


Participants who attend the full course will receive a University of Oxford electronic certificate of attendance. 

The certificate will show your name, the course title and the dates of the course you attended.

You will be required to attend all of the live sessions on the course in order to be considered for an attendance certificate. 


Description Costs
Standard course fee £225.00


Fees include electronic copies of course materials.

All courses are VAT exempt.

Register immediately online 

Click the “book now” button on this webpage. Payment by credit or debit card is required.



Mr David Davidson


David Davidson, Director and General Editor of Archaeopress Publishing Ltd. Although David is well known as the editor in chief of Archaeopress his early background was in commercial archaeology working for Tempvs Reparatvm, Archaeological and Historical Associates Limited from 1991-1997. His research background is Roman military architecture, publishing The Barracks of the Roman Army from the 1st to the 3rd Centuries A.D. in 1989 followed by ‘The First Cohort Barracks’ beneath York Minster and a study of ‘Military Housing’.

Dr Michael Dawson

Course Director

Michael Dawson, consultant at RPS. Michael is Editor of the journal Historic Environment Policy and Practice and has edited the Bedfordshire Archaeology Monographs Series (1997-2009). He has published several books including site reports and was Chair of CIFA from 2004-2008. His research interests include the Roman towns of Dacia, cultural resource management and archaeology of Iron Age and Roman Britain.

Peter Gane


Peter Gane, Portfolio Manager, Archaeology Journals at Taylor & Francis. Experienced Managing Editor with skills in Business Development, Editing, Academic Publishing, Digital Publishing, and Commissioning Publications in STEM subjects and the Humanities. Strong media and communication professional with a Postgraduate Diploma focused in Publishing from Oxford Brookes University. An experienced archaeology practitioner having worked in the UK and Europe on a variety of different projects, with an Archaeology BA from the University of Reading.

IT requirements

This course is delivered online using MS Teams.

To participate you must be familiar with using a computer for purposes such as sending email and searching the Internet. You will also need regular access to the Internet and a computer meeting our recommended minimum computer specification.
It is advised to use headphones with working speakers and microphone.