The Class

ANP455: Archaeology of Ancient Egypt will introduce students to one of the most fascinating societies in human history: ancient Egypt. The class will challenge students to explore the origins and fluorescence of the rich cultures of Egypt, ranging from the earliest foundations of the Egyptian state in the 5th century B.C. to the splendors of Roman Egypt under the rule of Cleopatra. By exploring case studies that highlight the extraordinary archaeological heritage of ancient Egypt, the course will focus students’ attentions on key anthropological concepts, such as kinship, ritual, political economy, mortuary practices, and cultural contact.  In addition, the class will explore the foundations and development of Egyptian archaeology as a discipline, as well as the ways in with the interest and obsession with ancient Egypt has manifested in popular culture.


This class adheres to the philosophy of open courseware and open access.  As such, all course materials are open and accessible to the public.  This includes all assignments (blog entries/responses, writing assignments, digital assignments.).  As such, students should think of themselves as not just taking a class, but as contributing to the pool of scholarship on egyptian archaeology.  This also means that you need to think about how you want to license your work (aka. how you would like other people to be able to use your work).  I would strongly urge all students to choose a Creative Commons license for each of their posts that meets with their needs.

It is very important to note any student (at any time during the semester) can opt not to have their class materials (blog posts, research article, etc.) be open access.  Just talk to Ethan, and he’ll make it happen.  Its equally important to note that any student who chooses to do this will not be penalized at all.


We won’t be using D2L that much during class.  All of your assignments are done online, so there is nothing to “hand in” on D2L.  Also, all of the course announcements & discussions that you might normally find on D2L happen on the course blog — which is why you will always need to keep you eye on the blog (you might want to think about subscribing to the course RSS feed).  The only real thing that we’ll be using D2L for is the class gradebook.  You’ll be able to use it to see your grades (if you see something amiss with your grades, be sure to email Ethan ASAP)


Blogs & blogging is a big part of this class.  Students are going to be using a blog (this site, in fact) to do some of your class assignments (check out the Assignments section of the site for more info on that).  Also, the course blog is going to be the primary way how your professor a will be communicating with you (outside of class).  All class announcements, info, etc. will be posted on the blog.  This means you’ll always need to keep your eye on the blog. If you are unfamiliar with the whole idea of blogs, check out this handy dandy little video.


All students are required to sign up for a Gravatar account ( A Gravatar (globally recognized avatar) is a profile image that follows you from site to site appearing beside your name when you do things like comment or post on a blog.  To get an account, just go to the Gravatar website, and sign up using your MSU email (using your MSU email is key).


Instead of physically handing in written assignments (or sending a PDF) all of the formal written work for this class will live on a class wiki. A wiki is esentially platform that allows for collaborative document editing (Wikipedia is a Wiki).  Just like the course website, the class wiki (which can be found here) is completely open access. If you are unfamiliar with wikis, check out this handy dandy little video.


There is one required textbook for  this class:

Kathryn Bard
Intro To The Archaeology Of Ancient Egypt
(Wiley-Blackwell, 2007)

If you want a physical copy of the book, buy it from Amazon (its cheaper than buying it from the university bookstore).

In addition to the required textbook, electronic readings will be assigned throughout the semester. Many of the online readings will be available through the MSU Library Electronic Resources System. Refer to the Schedule for reading assignments.

It is extremely important to remember that all readings are mandatory for the class, and must be completed. Reading assignments will be included on the semester exams.


Due dates are not negotiable. All assignments are to be submitted on their specific due date (refer to weekly schedule for exact due dates) If you know ahead of time that you are going to be away from a computer with an assignment is due, it is your responsibility to submit it before the due date if you don’t want to be penalized.

Only under extreme (and documentable) circumstances will students be allowed to submit assignments after the due date without being penalized. Students who do not submit any of their assignments will be docked 15% for each 24 hour period for which it is late.


When completing their formal writing assignments, students MUST use APA style and formatting.  If you are unfamiliar with APA style and formatting, check out this website.


In accordance with Michigan State University’s policies on “Protection of Scholarship and Grades” and “Integrity of Scholarship and Grades,” students are expected to honor principles of truth and honesty in their academic work. Academic integrity means, amongst other things, not plagiarizing. Plagiarism includes submitting someone else’s work (words, ideas, etc.) as their own now will the knowingly permit another student to copy and submit their work. Additional discussion of academic integrity is available on the Ombudsman’s website:


Michigan State University is committed to providing equal opportunity for participation in all programs, services and activities. Requests for accommodations by persons with disabilities may be made by contacting the Resource Center for Persons with Disabilities at 517-884-RCPD or on the web at Once your eligibility for an accommodation has been determined, you will be issued a verified individual services accommodation (“VISA”) form. Please present this form to me at the start of the term and/or two weeks prior to the accommodation date (test, project, etc). Requests received after this date will be honored whenever possible.

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