Short Course in Radiocarbon Dating and Bayesian Chronological Analysis
Hosted by NERC Radiocarbon Facility and Oxford NERC Doctoral Training Partnership
This course is aimed at researchers using radiocarbon and other techniques, including Quaternary geologists, palaeobiologists, archaeologists and marine geoscientists. The first two days of the course will cover key aspects of radiocarbon dating including sample selection, laboratory processes and Bayesian analyses of radiocarbon dates. Various aspects relating to the production and interpretation of radiocarbon dating will be taught by members of the NERC Radiocarbon Facility, based at both Oxford and East Kilbride. This course aims to become a core component of practical radiocarbon training in the UK.
The third day of the course will expand on this to look at the construction of Bayesian chronologies more generally, including those that rely primarily on other dating techniques. In this third day there will be a focus on using chronologies for environmental records. This day of the course will be suitable for those participating in the INTIMATE (Integrating ice core, marine and terrestrial records) initiative.
The programme has been formulated to introduce radiocarbon dating and other chronometric techniques to participants by exploring – through lectures, tours and tutorials – the key issues essential to the construction of reliable chronologies. This course has been developed by the NERC Radiocarbon Facility, which is NERC and AHRC funded and consists of the science-based archaeology node at Oxford (Oxford Radiocarbon Accelerator Unit: ORAU) and the environment node at East Kilbride (Scottish Universities Environmental Research Centre: SUERC), and as part of the University of Oxford NERC Doctoral Training Partnership.
The course will be held at the Department for Earth Sciences, South Parks Road, Oxford. Tea, coffee and a sandwich lunch will be provided each day for all participants.
Bed and breakfast accommodation, and dinner on the Monday and Tuesday evenings, are available to book as optional extras and are provided at Oxford University Department for Continuing Education, Rewley House, 1 Wellington Square, Oxford, OX1 2JA. Rewley House is approximately 15 minutes walk from the course location.
National Occupational Standards for Archaeology: Contributes to the Performance criteria and Knowledge and Understanding requirements for CCSAPAC1 Research and analyse information to achieve objectives; CCSAPAC8 Undertake analysis and interpretation.
The course will be held at the Department for Earth Sciences, South Parks Road, Oxford.
Dinner and Accommodation will be at Rewley House, 1 Wellington Square, Oxford.
Monday 16 March 2020
Day One: Introduction to Radiocarbon Dating
9.00am Registration and coffee/tea
Project planning and sample selection
11.20am Pre-treatment and preparation
12.20pm Group discussions
2.00pm Radiocarbon measurement methods
Evaluation of dates
Radiocarbon as a tracer
4.00pm Short lab tour
Tuesday 17 March 2020
Day Two: Radiocarbon calibration and Bayesian analysis
Radiocarbon and the carbon cycle
Reservoirs and reservoir correction
Calibration of radiocarbon dates
Introduction to use of OxCal
2.00 pm Building Bayesian age models
Workshop on Bayesian age modelling in OxCal
Using outputs from Bayesian models
Mapping of radiocarbon data
Wednesday 18 March 2020
Day Three: Bayesian analysis of environmental chronologies
Dating environmental records
Age depth modelling
Introduction to OxCal age-depth modelling
The INTIMATE chronological database
Lacustrine, Marine and Ice cores
2.00pm Using different types of dating information (14C, Ar-Ar, U-Series, Varve counts, Ice layer counting, OSL)
Applying age-depth models to proxy data
Correlating multiple records
5:00pm Course ends
There will be short breaks each day for coffee/tea at around 11.00am and 3.30pm, and a sandwich lunch at 1.00pm for all participants. Dinner is available at Rewley House at 7pm on Monday 16 and Tuesday 17 March for those wishing to book this additional option.
Accommodation for this three-day course is at Rewley House for Monday and Tuesday nights only.
Depending on availability it may also be possible to extend your stay, please enquire at the time of booking for availability and prices.
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.
includes coffee/teas & sandwich lunches for all three days: £461.00
Dinner Monday night @ Rewley House: £21.00
Dinner Tuesday night @ Rewley House: £21.00
Single B&B (2 nights Monday & Tuesday at Rewley House): £165.00
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: email@example.com
If you would like to attend part of the course, but not all, please contact Hazel Richards by emailing: firstname.lastname@example.org and she can arrange the booking for you.
Day 1 is a general introduction to radiocarbon dating
Days 1 and 2 will be relevant for archaeologists wishing to do Bayesian analysis
Days 2 and 3 are suitable for people interested in Bayesian analysis, who already have a working knowledge of radiocarbon dating
Day 3 is suitable for environmental scientists doing age-depth models and similar
Course DirectorDirector of the Oxford Radiocarbon Accelerator Unit, Author of Oxcal
Please use the 'Book' or 'Apply' button on this page. Alternatively, please contact us to obtain an application form.
Terms and conditions
Terms and conditions for applicants and students on this course
Sources of funding
Information on financial support
The closing date for making a booking for this course is Monday 9 March at 10.00am.