Online – Stonehenge

Introduction to the Stonehenge online course by Dr John Hill. 

Stonehenge is, no doubt, one of our most important prehistoric sites in the United Kingdom. It is also one of the most complex of monuments to understand. Even today, we still find new archaeological data that demands us to continuously challenge our opinions about this difficult but incredible site.

The University of Liverpool’s accredited Stonehenge online course will give you a great introduction to this fascinating site and an appreciation of what we currently know about it. Over the next several weeks we will cover a number of themes related to what we know about Stonehenge and the following is just a highlight of some (but not all) of these themes.

Week one – Setting the scene – from the Ice Age to the Early Bronze Age

In this part of the course, you will receive a brief overview of the chronological development of British Prehistory i.e. starting at the end of the last Ice Age and ending with the coming of the Early Bronze Age (c.10,000 – 1800 BC). Certainly, this will help you to put Stonehenge into its proper historical chronological context in reference to the rest of British Prehistory.

Another theme we followed during the creation of this online course was to give you a sense of visiting Stonehenge and seeing the key architectural features of the site. This first week will offer you an online ‘Virtual Tour’ of Stonehenge giving you a foundational knowledge to build upon during the weeks that follow.

Week two – The meaning of Stonehenge

There are many theories about what Stonehenge means. Some are incredibly far flung that don’t involve much evidence whilst others emerge from a body of data built up by rigorous research and academic scrutiny. In this part of the online course we will look at some of those credible theories that will help you to understand more about this fascinating site.

Week three – How and when was Stonehenge built?

Construction techniques are often a popular topic to mention when talking about Stonehenge. Indeed, this particular topic forms the thrust of my own research. In this part of the course we will look at some of the construction techniques used as Stonehenge and I will share with you some of my own ideas about how the builders could have accomplished such magnificent engineering.

Week four – Who lived at Stonehenge?

Who lived at Stonehenge is the culminating topic for this course. Although nobody actually lived at Stonehenge, much funerary activity has taken place both inside the monument and within its surrounding landscape. These burials can tell us a lot of information about the people who lived during the times when Stonehenge was most active and we will consider, perhaps, three of the most important burials found at the site.

Assessment

Additionally, within this module, we will look at the importance of excavation and in a short video accompanying this theme I will explain just how much of the Stonehenge site has been excavated. This topic is important as it formulates the 1000 word essay assignment required for the course’s accreditation: “Stonehenge, to excavate or not to excavate – that is the question?”

I personally believe that we should excavate more, but I won’t give my opinions just now. Rather we can discuss not only my reasons but also your ideas using our open-forum discussion board. The discussion board will also allow you to share your ideas with your fellow students. Incidentally, our online course software also offers many other inter-active features for you to take advantage of, such as access to the University of Liverpool’s Electronic library.

Both I and the online support team will also be available online to offer help and guidance through the duration of the course and (hopefully?) answer any questions you may wish to ask.

I look forward to leading you through this exciting course.

Best wishes

Dr John Hill

To enrol on this course please click here https://goo.gl/LXETHp

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