Research and education hand in hand: new minor launched from research project Constructing the Limes

Archeoloog Albert van Giffen kijkt toe terwijl twee werklieden werken aan de opgraving van het Romeinse castellum in Valkenburg (ZH) in 1941-1943. Foto: Rijksmuseum van Oudheden (CC-BY 3.0)
Archaeologist Albert van Giffen looks on as two workmen work on the excavation of the Roman castellum near Valkenburg (ZH) in 1941-1943. Photo: Rijksmuseum van Oudheden (CC-BY 3.0)

From the research project Constructing the Limes, of which UU is the pen leader, a minor of the same name has emerged at Hogeschool Saxion. The minor focuses on archaeological research on the border of the Roman Empire in the Netherlands and Germany. Several project members provide the teaching and it is intended that UU students will eventually be able to follow the minor as well.

Army camps and a burial field

Eight archaeology students have now started the minor. They are working on two subprojects of the Limes project. They are researching possible temporary army camps on the Veluwe, which they are tracing using drones and fieldwork.

Reconstructie van een houten Romeinse wachttoren (turris) bij Vechten. Bron: Wikimedia/Niels Bosboom
Roman tower at Fort Vechten. Source: Wikimedia/Niels Bosboom

In addition, the students will work with excavation reports and excavated material to learn more about the Roman burial field near Valkenburg (South Holland). 

Research and education hand in hand 

The minor is a striking example of how research can be combined with education. Students get a unique opportunity to experience how current academic research is carried out in practice. Moreover, they can actively contribute to it themselves.

Constucting the Limes is a five-year project funded by NWO as part of the Dutch Research Agenda. It is led by Saskia Stevens (UU) and aims to better map the border of the Roman Empire in the Netherlands and Germany, the Lower German Limes.

The minor Constructing the Limes was designed by project partners Wouter Vos and Jeroen Oosterbaan of the Hogeschool Saxion. They are lecturers at the Archaeology programme, the only practice-oriented archaeology course in the Netherlands. Lecturers from Utrecht University and other partner universities will also give lectures within the minor.