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Studying Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia at University

A Conference for Sixth-Formers

The Royal Asiatic Society and The British Museum, London

London, 7th March 2020 and Durham, 14th March 2020


This year the conference will be held twice, at different venues.  On Saturday 7th March it will be at the Royal Asiatic Society and British Museum. On Saturday 14th March it will be at the University of Durham and the Durham Museum. Each event will have its own programme, to be posted below in due course.  You are welcome to attend either or both. 
Tickets are now available! Please book your free tickets via the following links: 



The Judgment of Ani 

Egypt and Mesopotamia (modern Iraq; ancient Sumer, Assyria and Babylon) bequeathed to posterity some of the most fascinating remains from all of the ancient world.  Today it is possible to learn the languages, study the artefacts, and reconstruct the most varied aspects of these ancient civilisations in astonishing detail.

But since these subjects are not offered at A level, few sixth-formers are aware that they exist as University subjects; indeed, many A level students might never have had the opportunity to learn about these cultures.

The purpose of this one-day conference is to give sixth formers an opportunity to explore what it is like to study Egypt and Mesopotamia at British Universities: to see what makes the subject area so intellectually and culturally exciting, learn about the various degree courses, and understand what admissions tutors are looking for.

The programme will include talks about careers, information on admissions, and the opportunity to meet current students and academic staff from many of the institutions in the UK that teach these subjects, including: Cambridge, Oxford, UCL, Reading, Liverpool, Cardiff, SOAS, UEA and KCL. Representatives of the Egypt Exploration Society will also be on hand. There will also be gallery tours (led by current staff and students) and sample lectures.



The British Museum, Entrance to Gallery 9

Teachers are welcome to bring groups, but individual students and teachers are equally welcome. This is, in essence, a nation-wide Open Day for the subject area at large.

*Attendance is free.

The event is organised by the Department of Archaeology, University of Cambridge, in partnership with the Royal Asiatic Society and the British Museum. It is sponsored by the British Institute for the Study of Iraq, the London Centre for the Ancient Near East, the Egypt Exploration Society and the Royal Asiatic Society. Please address any queries to: 

 The "Cyrus Cylinder"


Travel bursaries

Thanks to the generosity of an anonymous donor, the Thriplow Charitable Trust, the British Institute for the Study of Iraq and the Egypt Exploration Society, we are able offer travel bursaries in certain instances to enable sixth formers at state schools to attend the conference.

The bursaries are administered by the Department of Archaeology, University of Cambridge. To apply, 1) write to Dr Martin Worthington at by [deadline to be specified], stating where you will be travelling from, by which means of transport, and the estimated cost; also include (in the text of the email or as a PDF attachment) a 250-word statement on your interest in the subject area (it may include illustrations, but need not); 2) ask a teacher or equivalent (e.g. a museum curator; not a parent) to send a reference which comments on your academic ability and enthusiasm to the same email address, by the same deadline.

Applicants will be notified of the outcome shortly after the deadline for applications has passed. Bursaries will normally be payable after the event via cheque or BACS.  If you need a different arrangement, please let us know when you apply.




We gratefully acknowledge financial support from the British Institute for the Study of Iraq, the Egypt Exploration Society, The Thriplow Charitable Trust, the Royal Asiatic Society and an anonymous benefactor.


Future editions

This is the 5th Annual Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia Conference for 6th formers.  If you would like to be kept up to date for next year, please sign up to the Cambridge Archaeology Outreach Mailing List.


Relevant University Open Days

Relevant university Open Days will be posted here in due course.


Essay Competitions
Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge, Ancient World Essay Competition
Digital Poster Competition
The Gerald Avery Wainwright digital poster competition, run by Oxford University.



Recordings of modern scholars reading Babylonian and Assyrian poetry.
Sven Moons' survey of British museums which include Egyptian artefacts.
Studying Assyriology and Egyptology at Cambridge.
Manchester's free online taster courses in Egyptology.



This event is made possible through the support of: