Objectives

This module is designed to introduce students to different theories and methods in cultural heritage and develop their skills on the three-dimensional digitisation, preservation, analysis, interpretation and dissemination of cultural heritage data. Students will also develop an overall understanding of the implications, theoretical debates and challenges of these technologies in the field. In the first part of the module, students will focus on 3D recording techniques in cultural heritage, such as photogrammetry, 3D and multispectral scanning, and reflectance transformation imaging, by using industry standard software and methods. They will also have the chance to apply their skills to real life scenarios and complete mini 3D recording projects. The second part of the module will focus on theoretical debates and challenges in the field of digital cultural heritage which will take the form of seminars and discussion groups. In such a way, students will also become theoretically grounded, developing their critical ability to evaluate processes and products and understanding theoretical traditions and the implications of digital tools in archaeology and cultural heritage.

Classes will be based on lectures, seminars, tutorials and supervised practical exercises, while they will encourage active learning through discussion, group projects and critical thinking exercises. Students will be required to reflect on the main concepts discussed in the class, while presenting, discussing and analysing works and text extracts of theoreticians and practitioners in the field. Visits to cultural heritage institutions will also allow to put into practical effect the skills taught in the classroom in real life scenarios. In addition, small projects that require research, collaboration and synthesis will help students to develop their own research capabilities. Teaching methods also include use of electronic tutorials, online learning resources, library resources, as well as preparation and participation in short presentations of particular topics related to the module.

By the end of the module, students will have the ability to use advanced methods to record, analyse and interpret cultural heritage data, also being familiar with more complex technologies, such as multispectral imaging. They will also have familiarity with advanced software for 3D recording and an overall understanding of a wide range of technologies in cultural heritage and the implications of their use.