Submerged Paleolandscapes Course

Free Grad Student Slots!

The University of West Florida Department of Anthropology is hosting an opportunity for Continuing Education through a course in submerged paleolandscapes in August 2022. Those who do not need CE can also take the class. Registration and pricing details are in the flyer.

NOTE: Four slots have been paid for and held in reserve specifically for graduate students. Travel and accommodations are the responsibility of the student. Interested graduate students should send an email of interest (why would this class be useful to you?) to me at rgougeon at

This course will provide participants with an overview of the topic of submerged paleolandscapes, including the cultural historical contexts needed to understand them. Course participants will also gain hands-on experience in some of the emerging technologies used to discover and interpret submerged terrestrial sites and landscapes.

In the field of archaeology, few questions are as intriguing or controversial as questions of where we came from and how we got here. Archaeologists have developed numerous patterns and models of early human migration and occupation based on evidence recovered from sites on land; however, growing awareness of past climate change and sea-level fluctuations has highlighted a flaw with these models. Large portions of the world’s continental shelves that are presently underwater were exposed as dry land during periods of early human migration. Although archaeologists commonly point to the importance of coastal margins in migration studies, the coastal margins that existed during past migrations have not been investigated systematically because they are now underwater.

Interest in the study of submerged landscapes has received greater attention in the last decade (e.g., Bailey et al. 2017; Benjamin et al. 2011; Evans et al. 2014; Flemming et al. 2017) in large part because of the increasing availability of the technology required to access submerged archaeological sites. Despite the potential for submerged landscapes to yield previously undiscovered and potentially paradigm-shifting data, continental shelves are rarely targeted for systematic subsurface archaeological investigation, with most investigations taking place close to shore. Given the recent and rapid increase in off-shore and near-shore energy sector developments, archaeologists have an opportunity to contribute to our understanding of submerged paleolandscapes, but only if they are able to properly contextualize these resources and know how and what to look for.

UWF Department of Anthropology Submerged Paleolandscapes Course

Dates: August 8-12, 2022
Schedule: Mon-Thu, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Location: Pensacola, FL
The course is open to both current students and professionals. Enrollment in UWF is not required. Course will include lectures from scholars and professionals, hands-on practical exercises, and on-water experiences (weather permitting). Continuing education units will be available through the UWF Continuing Education program. 

Topics will include:

  • Sea-level change: what it means to archaeology and how to understand it
  • Climate changes and their impacts on the archaeological record
  • Determining submerged site potential
  • Remote sensing methods and interpretation
  • Physical sampling and coring methods and analyses
  • Excavation and documentation of submerged prehistoric archaeological sites
%d bloggers like this: