The Department of Archaeology (formerly Archaeology and History of Art) offers both an undergraduate (B.A.) and graduate (M.A.) degree. Our programs focus on the Ancient Near East (Neolithic, Bronze, and Iron Ages), the Greeks and Romans (Classical Archaeology), and the Byzantine Empire (Medieval Archaeology). As archaeologists, we explore how art, architecture, and material remains of all sorts contribute to our knowledge of ancient and medieval civilizations of Turkey and its neighbors. We are also interested in museums, how they display, educate, protect, and conduct research about cultural heritage.

Our approach is comprehensive and interdisciplinary, drawing on such fields as art and architectural history, cultural and physical anthropology, history, and geology, chemistry, and other natural sciences. We also require practical training in drawing ceramics and other archaeological finds, planning, and surveying. Because our classes are small, students enjoy a warm sense of community with fellow students and teachers - an excellent environment for learning as well as for developing skills of analysis and presentation.

Taking part in an excavation during the summer months is considered an important component of archaeological study. The Department currently co-sponsors excavations at Labraunda, an ancient religious center near Milas. In the past, the Department has sponsored excavations at Kinet Höyük, an ancient harbor town near Dörtyol (Hatay); Hacımusalar, near Elmalı (Antalya), a town inhabited from the Early Bronze Age into the Byzantine period; and Gre Dimse, an Iron Age settlement near Batman. Students have taken part in excavations conducted by other universities as well, both inside Turkey and abroad (most recently in Cyprus, Greece, and Israel). Other types of practical experience are also encouraged, such as internships in museums or archaeometrical study. The Department will help arrange placement of students on excavations or in museums or other appropriate research institutions, in Turkey and abroad (such as the Museum of Anatolian Civilizations and the Erimtan Museum, in Ankara, and the Louvre, in Paris). In addition, students have the opportunity to study abroad for one or two semesters. In recent years, Department students have taken part in Erasmus exchange programs in Venice and Verona (Italy), Poznan and Wroclaw (Poland), and Lund (Sweden).

Archaeology fascinates almost everyone, but even in Turkey, rich in archaeological remains, few people choose to study it. An undergraduate degree in Bilkent's Department of Archaeology serves as good preparation for professional development in both archaeology and in a variety of other fields. If you are interested in a career in archaeology, either in research, university level education, museum work, or cultural heritage management, an advanced degree may be necessary. Your undergraduate or graduate degree from our Department, combined with your knowledge of English, will allow you to be competitive for entry into graduate programs, both in Turkey and abroad. If you decide to pursue another career, the variety of courses and approaches you have studied will attract the interest of employers in fields as diverse as publishing, tourism, business, banking, management, and education.

See our feature on Careers on this website to learn what some of our graduates have done.

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We welcome your interest in our programs. If you would like further information, do not hesitate to contact any member of the department's teaching staff.

History of the Department: A Personal View – presented by Dr. Charles Gates, 2 November 2018 ["pdf"]

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Bilkent University Main Campus
FHL Building Room H-149
06800 Bilkent -- Ankara, TURKEY
PHONE: +90 (312) 290 1934
FAX: +90 (312) 290 1075
EMAIL: tezgorbilkent.edu.tr