6 Tips for Being a Better Archaeologist

Whether you’re a first-year geology student or an experienced paleontologist, there’s always something you can do to improve your skills in archaeology. Here are six tips for climbing to even greater heights and digging in even lower earth.

1. Find a Focus

This mostly applies to students and aspiring archaeologists, but if you’re flitting from field to field even as a trained professional, it might be relevant to you, too. You can’t do it all! The best archaeologists are specialists in a particular area of interest, so figure out where your passion lies and follow it.

2. Know Your Equipment

Resistivity imaging requires different tools than ground surveys. Electrode systems are operated differently than polarization supplies. If you’re serious about a career in archaeology, you’ll need to know what equipment to use and when. The wrong tool at the wrong time can spell disaster for the entire project.

3. Stay Attuned to the Industry

Join local archaeology clubs. Take out subscriptions to science magazines. Start a blog where you chart your academic progress and share your enthusiasm with the world. The more you’re involved with the community, the more energized you’ll be about the subject.

4. Travel

This isn’t strictly related to archaeology, but it’s a great way to keep your passion inflamed. Pictures simply can’t compare to the feeling of actually walking through ancient ruins or seeing volcanic soil just begging to be explored. You’ll walk away from the experience ready to finish your schooling and get to work!

5. Never Stop Studying

You don’t have to be in a classroom to learn something new. In fact, some of the best knowledge you can gain is through your own experimentation. What’s in your backyard? What tools will you need to properly excavate the riverbank? There’s a lot of fun to be had with trial and error.

6. Network, Network, Network

Like any field, archaeology is all about the connections you can make to open doors for you. Join clubs; go on amateur digs; talk to your professors about work-study opportunities. The goal is to meet as many like-minded individuals as possible while also gaining valuable real-world experience.

These are just a few things to keep in mind if you want to improve your skills in archaeology. As you can see, there are many roads you might go down, so take your time and figure out the best one for you.

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