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The Department of Archaeology and the McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research jointly support a number of internationally recognised laboratories for archaeological science, including:


  • The Charles McBurney Laboratory for Geoarchaeology—which is focussed on deciphering past landscapes and interpreting the use of space;
  • The Computational and Digital Archaeology Laboratory (CDAL) - which is focused on the application and development of computational and quantitative methods to study the human past;
  • The George Pitt-Rivers Laboratory for Bioarchaeology—which is focused on utilising macrofossil analyses, phytoliths, pollen and broader palaeoenvironmental work to explore vegetation history, subsistence strategies, and past cultures;
  • The Glyn Daniel Laboratory for Archaeogenetics—the first dedicated genetics laboratory established within an archaeological research institute;
  • The Grahame Clark Laboratory for Zooarchaeology—which is focused on studying animal remains from archaeological sites through such projects as shell isotopic analysis, seasonality of marine molluscs, the study of bone technology, and palaeopathology;
  • The Dorothy Garrod Laboratory for Isotopic Analysis—which is focused on the application of isotope analysis to questions in archaeology, palaeoclimate and palaeoenvironment, ecology, nutrition and diet, provenance and origins.
  • The Material Culture Laboratory—which is focused on the study of material culture in archaeology; research strengths include rock art, ceramics, ritual artefacts, identity, technology and everyday objects.
  • The PAVE research group—is an interdisciplinary research group which aims to understand the ways in which the human phenotype adapts to environmental variation throughout the life course.
  • Ancient Parasites Laboratory - which is focused on how parasites have infected humans throughout evolution, and determining the impact of the change from hunter gatherer lifestyle, to early settled farmers, to complex civilisations, and industrialisation.