Archaeology at UNISA

Contact information, map and directions, contact form, opening hours, services, ratings, photos, videos and announcements from Archaeology at UNISA, College & University, 4th Floor, Theo van Wyk Building. UNISA main campus, Pretoria.

Archaeology at UNISA is a facebook site established with the goal of connecting students, lecturers and individuals involved with archaeology on a more relaxed, social platform.

Operating as usual


Abstracts for the ASAPA conference due 29 February.


: Online registration for 2024 for all undergraduate, honours, postgraduate diplomas and M&D qualifications will open on 10 January 2024.


PGS is looking to appoint three junior archaeologists to join our team on our ongoing large-scale mitigation project. This is an incredible opportunity to gain experience in Early Farmer archaeological excavations and research.

Please take note of the qualification requirements and work conditions.


Minimum an Honours Degree in Archaeology

Work conditions

Accommodation and subsistence is provided
Monthly return trips to Pretoria are provided
Working condition is extreme and challenging, with temperatures in the high 30C and very humid

Closing date: 10 January 2024

Contract position: 6 months starting 1 February 2024

Submit applications to [email protected]

Apply for admission 2024 20/10/2023

M & D applications close 10 November.

Undergraduate and Honours application date extended until 17 November.

Apply for admission 2024 Apply for admission 2024


Questions about Honours? Join the College of Human Sciences Open Day, 10am to 12 noon on 7 October 2023, online at


Applications to study at Unisa in 2024 for the undergraduate and honours degrees are currently open and close on 13 October 2023. Note that if you want to study archaeology at the undergraduate level, you need to apply for the General BA or B.Sc degree. You would then select Archaeology as one of your majors when you register.

Remember that even if you are already an archaeology student at Unisa, you will still need to APPLY for the honours degree. Apply now if you expect to complete your undergraduate degree this year. If you have any questions about studying archaeology at Unisa, please comment on this post or send us a message through the page.
Undergraduate qualifications: 1 September - 13 October 2023
Honours degrees: 1 September - 13 October 2023


Congratulations to Ms Sky-Lee Fairhurst, who has successfully completed her MA in Archaeology with a dissertation entitled " An archaeological investigation of the Bakgatla Baga Kgafela at Mabeleapodi, Pilanesberg National Park, North West Province.”

“This dissertation, a collections-based study, applies a microscale approach to the study of the unanalysed material excavated from five midden features from three (Kgosing, Morêma, and Tshukudu) of the five sections that make up the 19th-century Bakgatla Baga Kgafela capital settlement, Mabeleapodi, situated in the Pilanesberg National Park, North West. Current ethnographic evidence suggests that Kgosi Pilane lived in the capital, Mabeleapodi, from AD 1830 until his death in AD 1850. As a result, it is believed that Mabeleapodi was probably abandoned in the mid-19th century soon after the death of Kgosi Pilane. However, the archaeological material indicates that Mabeleapodi was occupied from the early 1800s up until the 1860s/1870s, suggesting that the site was occupied long after the death of Kgosi Pilane, and that it may be one of the few sites in the Pilanesberg region that was occupied during and after the Difaqane period.”
[Sky's dissertation is now available at: ]


Pics from our 2023 field school now available in the Makanpanstad 2023 album. A fruitful week was spent recording and exploring some of the heritage within the community while training our students in important field skills. Many thanks to the community leaders who welcomed us and facilitated our visit and to the students for their hard work. Shout out to Henk Steyn of who came out for the day to teach us how GPR works.

Photos from Archaeology at UNISA's post 04/08/2023
Ivory from early Anglo-Saxon burials in Lincolnshire – A biomolecular study 06/07/2023

•Ivory used for bag rings was imported to England between the 5th and 7th centuries AD.
•Biomolecular analysis of ivory excavated from an Anglo-Saxon cemetery in Lincolnshire.
•Radiocarbon dating and ZooMS confirmed the ivory came from extant African elephants.
•87Sr/86Sr suggests the elephants inhabited an area of volcanic geology in East Africa."

Ivory from early Anglo-Saxon burials in Lincolnshire – A biomolecular study Ivory bag rings have been found in more than 70 cemeteries across southern, central, and eastern England dating to between the late-5th and 7th centur…


Congratulations to Ms Adri Humphreys, who has successfully completed her MA in Archaeology with a dissertation entitled "Anthropomorphic clay figurines from Early and Middle Iron Age sites in South Africa."

“This collections-based research project focuses on anthropomorphic clay figurines from archaeological sites in South Africa dating to the 1st and 2nd millennium AD. These archaeological sites were occupied by Iron Age farming communities in the Eastern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal and the Shashe-Limpopo Confluence Area in the Limpopo province of South Africa. The figurines in the collections of various museums were classified using modal analysis, and a basic catalogue was compiled. The study further explores archaeological context and ethnography as potential sources to better understand the role of figurines in rituals and everyday life. Further, the decoration patterns on the figurines are examined with reference to the practice of scarification in historical and modern societies. This study has shown that, in whatever context they are used, anthropomorphic figurines convey ideas through embellishment and form. An embodiment perspective is used to investigate the close relationship between figurines and women in these Iron Age communities.”

Adri’s dissertation is now available on Unisa’s institutional repository:


Archaeology is everywhere! Spotted in the Unisa car park, 21 February 2023, 6 pm. Today, these ceramic sherds entered the archaeological record. Where will they end up?

EXCAVATING THE PAST: The trail of red rust that leads to the beginning of human culture 14/02/2023

EXCAVATING THE PAST: The trail of red rust that leads to the beginning of human culture Up on the Bomvu Ridge, high up in the hills north of the Eswatini capital of Mbabane, the re-excavation of Lion Cavern — possibly the oldest mine in the world — is lending further evidence to southern Africa’s position as not only the cradle of humankind, but also of human culture.


First talk of the year tonight!
Dr David Witelson
Date: Thursday, 02 February 2023 Time: 19:30
Venue: The Auditorium, Roedean School,
35 Princess of Wales Terrace, Parktown, Johannesburg
Charge: Non-members: R50, members: free

In 1801, the early traveller John Barrow published in his Travels a controversial ‘facsimile’ of what he claimed was a rock painting of a unicorn. Few, if any, were convinced that it was of a genuine, one-horned creature, not least because the published image resembles the style of European engravings rather than San rock art. For over two hundred years, the ‘copy’ in his book has been regarded critically and sceptically. Understandably, the same is generally true for the suggestion that the unicorn ever existed in South Africa. Indeed, considerations of South Africa’s unicorn lore invariably conclude that the unicorns sought during the colonial era were simply rhinoceroses or gemsbok, or that such a creature was simply a figment of the imagination. How, indeed, could it be otherwise? But there is more to this fascinating story, and it begs the question of whether Barrow actually did find an image of a ‘unicorn’. New research around Dordrecht and Rossouw in the Eastern Cape highlights that rock paintings of unambiguously one-horned antelope do exist, and that there are many of them. Such paintings send us on to other significant and previously overlooked ethnographical and ethnohistorical documents. Together, they show the extraordinary degree to which the European unicorn resembled, at least in appearance, a one-horned, antelope-like form of a San rain-animal.

MAKING WAVES: How a few tech mavericks started the Internet in South Africa 18/01/2023

Archaeologists of the future will be amazed by how quickly this technology changed.

MAKING WAVES: How a few tech mavericks started the Internet in South Africa Did you know that three decades ago, a gutsy, pragmatic group of Rhodes University academics created email in this country, opening the digital gateway between South Africa and the world? Settle in for an entertaining read about the resourceful tech wizards who achieved success on a minimal budget,....

Want your school to be the top-listed School/college in Pretoria?

Click here to claim your Sponsored Listing.




4th Floor, Theo Van Wyk Building. UNISA Main Campus

Opening Hours

Monday 08:15 - 15:30
Tuesday 08:15 - 15:30
Wednesday 08:15 - 15:30
Thursday 08:15 - 15:30
Friday 08:15 - 15:30
Other Colleges & Universities in Pretoria (show all)
Tshwane North TVET College Tshwane North TVET College
Pretoria, Mamelodi, Soshanguve North & South, Temba And Rosslyn
Pretoria, 0001

TNC has a vibrant atmosphere and offers Vocational & nated programmes that responds to industry needs. Join the TNC family & "Get Involved"

Inscape Education Group Inscape Education Group
193 Corobay Avenue, Waterkloof Glen
Pretoria, 0181

Accredited higher education that promotes unique thinking and prepares graduates who define the indus

65 Turnberry Street
Pretoria, 0157

Caters for Olympiads in Natural, Life and Physical Sciences Grades 4 to 11Nationally in South Africa

Andiswa the boom Andiswa the boom

@the boom�I love you guys just a kind gal looking for friends

Vortex Caffe Vortex Caffe
Maubane New Stands Next To Dubai Section

Computer Centre and Access to Learning Lab

Njax Ross MaAdarance Njax Ross MaAdarance
Marburg Strt

We have fun and we laugh and share posts

Company apply Company apply

Tshwane monicipality looking people to work full time job immediately all information call Mr lindel

IntelTut IntelTut

IntelTut offers academic assistance and consultations to undergraduate and postgraduate university s

Lion king Lion king


Walking Sandals Walking Sandals
FPD Knowledge Park

This conference seeks to encourage research into innovative nursing approaches and best practices.

Awelani Awelani