AP550A Plains Prehistory
This class is designed for students who already have a basic understanding of Plains culture history. The primary goal of the class is to help you move from 'reading about' Plains Prehistory, to making significant, substantive contributions to the study of Plains Prehistory. Therefore, we will focus on several key aspects of doing productive research:
- Identifying gaps, or weaknesses in current understanding or Plains prehistory that have a more general archaeological significance
- Developing appropriate research questions to help fill the gaps or lessen the ignorance
- Designing appropriate methodological linkages between your research questions and the archaeological record
We will begin the semester be conducting a rapid review of the primary journal dealing with Plains Prehistory, Plains Anthropologist, to 'take the pulse' of the region's archaeological research. What approaches are favored? What methods are commonly applied? What are viewed as the Big Questions in Plains Prehistory.
From there, we'll work to put your research into context of Plains Prehistory, and also into the broader context of global archaeological research. Remember, if it doesn't have relevance to researchers interested in topics other than Plains Prehistory, it probably doesn't really have much relevance at all.