University of Western Australia Review of the Department of Archaeology December 1991


1.1 Background to the Review
1.2 Terms of Reference
1.3 Members of the Review Committee

1.4 Committee Procedures


3.1 To examine and report on the Department's goals and objectives, taking into account internal factors (University, Divisional, Faculty requirements) and external (educational and community) needs, and the extent to which those goals and objectives are being achieved.

3.2 To specifically examine and report on:

the quality and direction of research and scholarly activity with particular reference to the implementation of the recommendations made in the 1988 Review of the Centre for Prehistory;

the nature and quality of undergraduate and postgraduate courses, including trends in and distribution of enrolments;

the Standards and efficacy of teaching;

the quality and diversity of the Student body

the relationships with other departments of the University (eg. the needs for service teaching, shared resources and programmes);

the placement of the Department within the University's structure;

the processes for self review of its performance;

departmental management procedures

resources - accommodation, facilities and equipment; administrative and secretarial - and the effectiveness of their use;

the deficiencies, if any, as specified in (ix) above and ways in which they may be overcome

the recruitment, retention, training, and development of academic staff;

the performance in the area of equity and access;

the relationships with government and community groups, with particular reference to the development of courses and research programmes;

the trends in the employment of graduates and factors which may affect their transition from higher education to the workforce;

the initiatives by and impact on the department of the full-fee programme for overseas students.

To report on any other relevant matters.


APPENDICES [not included here]
(i) Statistical Data
(ii) Departmental Submission


1.1 Background to the Review

The Review of the Department of Archaeology is part of a seven year cyclical review of all University Departments. This review has been conducted within the guidelines established by the University in April 1991.

1.2 Terms of Reference

1.3 Members of the Review Committee

Associate Professor Neville Bruce (convenor)
Department of Anatomy and Human Biology
University of Western Australia

Professor Bernard Moulden
Department of Psychology
The University of Western Australia

Professor Isabel McBryde
Department of Prehistory and Anthropology
Australian National University.

The Secretary to the Committee was Keith Chambers.

1.4 Committee Procedures

The Terms of Reference were prepared in conjunction with the Head of the Department and the Head of the Division.

Questionnaires were posted to graduates majoring in Archaeology from 1988 to 1991 and student surveys were carried out by the Academic Staff Development Officer in both first and second semesters of 1991.

The Committee met from 18th to 22nd December 1991 inclusive. During that period all available staff (academic and general) and a cross section of current students were interviewed. The Committee also spoke with a number of other University staff and a cross section of people involved in Archaeology outside of the University.

After full consideration of the background information provided by the Department, submissions received by the Committee, statistical data and the interviews conducted, this report was prepared.


The teaching of Prehistory commenced in this University within the Department of Anthropology in the early 1970's. In 1983, the University accepted an offer of three years' funding for a Chair of Prehistory from the Australian Institute of Aboriginal Studies (now the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies). This funding was to be augmented, including a further three years' funding for the Chair, by a grant from the University Development Fund.

The appointment of the Foundation Professor coincided with the creation of the Centre for Prehistory in 1983. In addition to the Professor, two full- time academic members of staff transferred to the Centre.

From 1983 to 1988 the Centre functioned as an academic department in terms of teaching and research, but also carried out archaeological consulting work for government departments and private enterprise. This was one of the expectations in setting up the Chair and the Centre.

A University Review of the Centre for Prehistory was carried out late in 1987 and recommended that the Centre for Prehistory should become the Department of Archaeology, and be funded recurrently. It was subsequently decided that the Department should continue to carry out consulting work and could retain the Centre for Prehistory to coordinate and manage these activities. The Head of the Department had administrative responsibility for the Centre and until recently, the daily business of the Centre was the responsibility of a contracted consultant. Following the resignation of the consultant, the Centre is now run on a casual (one day a week) basis by a manager/consultant.

In 1987 two members of the academic staff left the University. They were replaced in 1988 by a tenured Senior Lecturer and a contract Lecturer. An additional 0.5 temporary lectureship was allocated in 1989 and in 1991 the Division provided additional part-time teaching funds. This recent funding wag partly due to the increasing number of students enrolled in the Department but was also related to the physical relocation of one staff member to the Department of Geography on a reduced teaching load.

The circumstances associated with this relocation; its consequences; and other matters relating to the management and equity of both the Department and the Centre, have been major matters brought to the attention of the Committee. They have pre-occupied the Review Committee which believes that they require urgent attention at the Vice- Chancellorial level.


3.2(i) The quality and direction of research and scholarly activity with particular reference to the implementation of the recommendations made in the 1988 Review of the Centre for Prehistory

The Review Committee believes that most of the recommendations of the Working Party which reviewed the then Centre for Prehistory have been met. Recommendations (iv) and (ix) of that review are dealt with in more detail later in the body of this report.

The Department was given an "A" research rating by the Research Committee for the period 1987-89. Despite the staffing movement which has occurred since then, the Department would probably achieve a higher rating than this were it to be reassessed today. Its high research profile is a positive strength of the Department. The staff are engaged in important work of a high quality which is acknowledged both nationally and internationally. The research work undertaken by the Department as a whole and by its staff is well designed and targets important areas of research in the Western half of Australia, especially the development of work in the North West of the State. More recently, projects have been established in Asia and links made with institutions there. In noting the high research profile of the Professor the Committee also recognised the strong performance by the other staff members as well as by postgraduate students.

The research standing of the Department is evidenced by ARC and AIAITSIS grants which totalled $126,400 or $36,144 per staff member (3.5) in 1991; by their refereed research publications, about 1.5 per staff member over the last three years; and by numerous reports, review articles and published papers presented at conferences.

[cf: the number of referred publications by Dr Rindos as provided in his First Report to the Vice-Chancellor.]


1989: 5

1990: 4

1991: 5

Grants No Total Per Staff Member
1989: 4 $ 49,400 $ 16,466
1990: 5 $ 44,060 $ 14,686
1991: 4 $126,400 $ 36,114

The Committee also notes that there has been active participation by both staff and students in conferences both within the state, elsewhere in Australia and overseas. The consulting activities of the Centre have also been responsible for an impressive number of reports by both staff and students supervised by staff. These have made a significant contribution. In general, they have set high standards of consultancy reporting in the State.

The Committee believes there is scope for the further development of cross-disciplinary research programmes, and the possibility of increased co-operative work with other Departments within the University and outside institutions could be explored. The Committee understands that recently such co- operative activities have decreased and the links which do exist are more likely to derive from the interests of individuals.

3.2(ii) The nature and quality of undergraduate and postgraduate courses, including trends in and distribution of enrolments

The Department is small and has limited staff resources. This is reflected in the range of topics taught. The Committee believes however, that joint courses with other Departments on campus should be fostered. This could have educational advantages given the cross-disciplinary nature of archaeology. There is some evidence of this in recent moves to work with Classics (see 3(v)). There is no graduate coursework, and with the present staffing resources a change from the present situation could not be envisaged.

The 1988 review recommended that immediate attention be given to the improvement of the first year undergraduate course. This appears to have been done and there is evidence of increasing student numbers. Statistics indicate that a greater number of students are progressing beyond first year Archaeology, although there was a slight regression from 1990 to 1991. The retention pattern is evident from second to third years and the Department expects to enrol six honours students next year. In spite of this healthy growth pattern, there is a noticeable attrition rate in first year with which the Department needs to concern itself. The pressures on a small staff team could well be a contributory factor in this regard.

There is a commendable enthusiasm for and dedication to the discipline of Archaeology within the student body which leads to healthy honours and postgraduate enrolments. The latter group have shown themselves to be effective field workers and productive researchers.

The Department is obviously hampered by its limited teaching resources. Increased resources could enable greater diversity of course offerings, with increased educational value; eg. expanding theoretical coverage and regional studies. The Department recognises the present need to expand the teaching of cultural heritage issues and the Committee agrees on the importance of this area. The Committee also believes that links with other Departments (eg. Anthropology) and institutions (eg. the WA Museum) should be explored to take advantage of available expertise and its potential to expand the range of courses offered.

3.2(iii) The standards and efficacy of teaching

Student ratings and assessment of teaching within the Department indicate a wide spread of performance. Recent surveys of undergraduate students, carried out within the Department by the Professional and Careers Development Officer, indicate a generally high level of performance from the staff although the Committee believes that there may have been some disruption to teaching brought about by divisions within the Department.

The Committee views the results of a survey of 24 recent graduates with some concern. These graduates were asked to score their satisfaction with the course as a whole from 1, very satisfied to 5, very dissatisfied. Seven of the 16 respondents replied with a score of 5.

There are also indications of problems relating to supervision of some postgraduate students. These might relate to difficulties of staffing a small department and may have further contributed to divisions within the Department. The Committee would like to see immediate steps taken to assess and redress this situation.

3.2(iv) The quality and diversity of the student body

From 1989-91 the average mean TEE score of first year students entering Archaeology was 361. This is below the average for the University and the Faculty of Science as a whole but falls within the average for those Departments with an Arts/Science overlap. From 1989-91 the Department had an average female student enrolment in Archaeology 120 of 64%. This attraction of female students is carried through the courses to PhD enrolments where the female numbers at present represent 82%. These percentages are higher than other Departments, both within the Science Faculty and the University as a whole, but the undergraduate figure is closer to those Departments with an Arts/Science overlap. The Department also does well to attract approximately 17% of its enrolments from part-time students. In 1990 and 1991 the Department's recruitment from the Faculties of Arts and Science was almost even which raises some questions about the earlier review's finding that the new Department be located "in a School of Science or in such other resource Unit appropriate to the scientific nature of the discipline." It also reflects the cross-disciplinary nature of Archaeology which straddles the Humanities and Sciences.

3.22(v) The relationships with other departments of the University - (eg. the needs for service teaching, shared resources and programmes)

Given the nature of Archaeology there is scope for development in this regard from both educational and resources perspectives. The Committee notes the strong interest in Classical Archaeology already evident in the Department of Classics and Ancient History and sees this as an area where joint courses could be developed. The Committee is aware that there has been some contact between the two Departments and strongly recommends that the link be strengthened not only from a teaching aspect but also with regard to the possibility of joint research supervision.

The Committee also believes there would be potential mutual benefit from increased links with other Departments such as Architecture (Heritage Preservation), Anthropology (Aboriginal Culture), Geography and Geology (Environmental Studies and Landscape History), Soil Science, Anatomy and Human Biology and other Science Departments. Expanded links with such Departments could provide a means of broadening the range of offerings available in science areas relevant to Archaeology. There is also a belief that by developing the present personal contacts between individual staff members into more formalised departmental relationships, Archaeology students might benefit from increased access to other laboratories and technical equipment.

3.2(vi) The placement of the Department within the University's structure

The Introduction sketches the history of the Department of Archaeology as it evolved from the Centre for Prehistory which in turn grew from within the Department of Anthropology and the Faculty of Arts. The previous review, in deciding on a suitable base for the new Department, was probably swayed by the intended process of devolution and the belief that a field work Department with laboratory and equipment needs, as well as strong scientific orientation, would be more favourably provided for within a scientific Division.

The Committee believes that the original decision should now be reviewed in the light of structural changes and the views expressed that equipment and field support funding and accommodation requirements may be provided for equally in a variety of situations. The Current scale of funding of an Archaeology student could be maintained regardless of the home Division. Similarly, laboratories and bench work areas could be provided for within the Division of Arts and Architecture. A relocation to this Division would also facilitate greater inter- departmental contact with the Departments of Anthropology, Classics and Ancient History. The Committee also believes that such a move would be philosophically acceptable to the Department.

3.2(vii) The processes for self review of its performance

The Review Committee commends the Department for the recent initiatives which it has taken with regard to the student reviews of teaching and which have been carried out by the Academic Staff Development Officer. These reviews were undertaken in first semester 1991, then again in second semester to ascertain the success of efforts to deal with the lessons arising from the first review. The Committee understands that adjustments have been made to the structure of Archaeology 120 and it is hoped that these changes will be evaluated closely and further developed as needs dictate.

3.2(viii) Departmental management procedures

A theoretical committee structure was drawn up at the beginning of 1991 but has not yet been implemented fully. The Departmental submission describes management style as being ". . . vaguely democratic. Procedures for delegation: I ask the only other full time continuing member of the academic staff what he is prepared to do. Generally, he is prepared to do more than he probably should.... Given the small size of the department, no special arrangements exist in practice for staff/student interaction."

In keeping with the above there do not appear to have been any regular staff meetings in the Department. Nor do there appear to have been any recent formal meetings with the student body or with any representative(s) of that group. What exists makes little formalized provision for consultation on issues and participation in decision making. It is a situation where decisions on the requests of students, or staff, on matters of funding or facilities, would appear to be made by the Head of Department without opportunity for consultation and discussion at the Departmental level. The Committee has been made aware of views that some staff and students have considered themselves treated differently from others and have felt unable to discuss this freely.

The Committee has serious concerns about whether current management procedures pose danger to the Department's academic environment. Staff/student morale has suffered and division arisen within the Department, leading to one senior member of staff and some postgraduate students being physically relocated to another Department. This situation is further addressed under 3(xi) and 3(xii).

Attention to matters of personnel management needs in the Department is an urgent priority. Formal arrangements for interaction between general and academic staff should be implemented, with appropriate and acceptable grievance investigation procedures established immediately and steps taken towards the creation of an environment of discussion and consultation on corporate activities. This aspect would become more important as the Department's teaching and research activities increased with growth in student numbers.

3.2(ix) Resources - accommodation, facilities and equipment; administrative and secretarial - and the effectiveness of their use

Accommodation and Facilities

The Department occupies two separate locations. All teaching and laboratory work is carried out on the main campus in General Purposes Building No. 3. This main accommodation appears to be fully utilised; it does not provide for expansion of either present student numbers or staff. Until recently storage facilities, and facilities for wet processing of archaeological finds, were available in a University house in Myers Street. Since the demolition of that house temporary storage and washing facilities have been available in the kitchen of the Nedlands campus. Before renovations at Nedlands are completed, alternative (preferably permanent) storage and washing facilities will need to be found. The Committee trusts that in considering the future accommodation needs for the Department, the Accommodation Committee will take into account the nature of the activities of this Department and the likely growth in student numbers. A suggestion has been made that the Department's storage needs could be catered for at the Shenton Park site. The Committee believes this would be inappropriate in view of the distance involved. It would also leave unresolved the need for a wet laboratory for archaeological work.

Two specific areas require comment.

(a) A separate room within the Department has been allocated to the Centre for Prehistory. This, of necessity, is uncluttered and appropriate for its business purpose. Yet it constituted spaces which cannot be fully utilised by the Department. However, the Committee recommends that the Centre for Prehistory be closed (see 3(xiv)). If this recommendation is accepted, then the vacated room could provide valuable and much needed space for research.

(b) Another room has been allocated for postgraduate students and tutors but its facilities for research activities need enhancing in terms of equipment, storage and work space.

The laboratory was initially designated for staff research. Its effectiveness is reduced by a lack of appropriate shelving and the need to use it for storage of artefacts and samples as well as analysis. It is inadequately furnished for washing finds and analytical work. However, this type of work should be kept separate from microscope work. The lack of suitable technical equipment in the postgraduate's room has resulted in these students needing to use the laboratory. This places great demand on limited resources.


Whilst the Department's equipment was probably adequate some years ago, the growth in student numbers and the physical isolation of the Department has changed the situation. This has led to a number of specific problems which have also been referred to under Accommodation (a) and (b). There is only one computer available for the temporary full-time tutor and both postgraduate and undergraduate students. The Technical Assistant also requires access to computer facilities for approximately one hour a day. Given the demands of tutors and students this requirement cannot always be met.

Items of equipment such as microscopes and balances, used for weighing, measuring and examining archaeological material, are now all under pressure. There is a need for both additional equipment and for equipment of a better quality than that already in use.

General Staff

The Department has an administrative position and a Technical Assistant. The administrative position is shared between two part-time staff. While this arrangement appears to be both amicable and successful it is clear that the staff are fully extended and must set clear priorities if they are to meet deadlines. The Technical Assistant who is employed on a half- time basis has a wide range of duties. The dual location of the Department results in unavoidably unproductive time being spent by her on movement between the two locations. This would be exacerbated were the store to be moved to Shenton Park.

3.2(x) The deficiencies, if any, as specified in (is) above and ways in which they may be overcome

(a) within the current level of resources,

(b) with additional resources

Accommodation and Facilities

The growth in student numbers both undergraduate and postgraduate has placed the present accommodation under strain. The Committee anticipates that Archaeology will be a growth area in both undergraduate study and research in Western Australia and sees a need for forward planning to cope with expected expansion. The Committee also believes it is important to locate the storage areas of the Department in close proximity to the main accommodation. Research staff need ready access to a wide range of artefacts and samples for teaching and research which cannot, with practicability, be located in office, laboratory and teaching areas. The storage area also needs to be at ground floor level to allow for ease of handling and ready access for transport vehicles.

Urgent attention needs to be given to the provision of shelving and in some cases the replacement of present shelving to make better use of the available space. At the moment, areas such as the laboratory are, of necessity, being used for storage purposes. The lack of shelving in the teaching laboratory has resulted in boxes of artefacts being stored on the floor. This is unsatisfactory from a number of aspects including safety. A compactus unit would resolve some of these difficulties.

The Committee understands that the Biological Sciences Library is to vacate its present location. Whilst it is not aware of the University's accommodation priorities, it wishes to point out that this would be ideal for the Department's storage area and would be adequate for the storage of current collections.


Present equipment needs both upgrading and supplementing. The Committee suggests the following items could take priority:

. compactus storage units

. electronic balances

. additional microscopes suitable for differing ranges of analysis

. photomicrography equipment

. additional computer(s) for postgraduate research students, tutors and the Technical Assistant.

With the exception of the compactus and the photomicrography equipment the majority of the items of equipment listed above could probably be met within a budget of $20,000. The Committee recommends that the Department discuss these priorities, as part of its forward planning with the Head of Division with a view to soliciting financial assistance to meet these needs. One of the present rooms could easily be adapted for use as a darkroom. However, as there is no alternative space to store its present contents, it is not possible to act on this initiative. A darkroom would also be low on a scale of priorities, given access to the University's media facility.

The Committee also notes that the Department does not have a wet laboratory for washing and processing material nor basic scientific laboratory plumbing provisions such as a silt trap. Any possible expansion of the present accommodation would need to address these needs. The sinks in the present Laboratory are not suitable for the usual cleaning of finds or equipment on return from the field.

General Staff

The Committee also believes the workload of the administrative staff who are performing both efficiently and effectively, needs to be monitored as present resources would not permit any increase. The Technical Assistant is under pressure with the current workload, especially servicing both academic needs and those of the consultancy activities of the Centre for Prehistory. Consideration needs to be given to the possibility of increasing her hours of employment as this technical support is an essential part of the smooth running and teaching and research activities of the Department.

3.2(xi) The recruitment, retention, training, and development of academic staff;

The Department has:

1 tenured Professor

1 tenurable Senior Lecturer (located in Geography)

1 (three year) contracted Lecturer (renewable in 1992)

1 (one year) contracted .5 Lecturer

For second semester 1991 funds were made available for a temporary full-time tutor. A lectureship has been advertised for 1992 but permission has not yet been given to fill the position.

The background to the physical relocation of one staff member to the Department of Geography has already been described in 3.2(viii). At present the 2.5 academic staff located within the Department carry heavy loads. The staff member currently located in Geography has a reduced undergraduate teaching load but on the other hand continues supervision of postgraduates. This could become a substantial supervisory responsibility. This divided situation has had an obviously detrimental effect on the Department in terms of its day to day operation, its image, and the morale of both the staff and the postgraduate students and the undergraduate teaching. There is an urgent need for the Vice-Chancellor, in conjunction with the Head of Division, to resolve the situation which has given rise to this most undesirable state of affairs.

3.2(xii) The performance in the area of equity and access

The present accommodation, although located on an upper floor, is serviced by a lift. Unfortunately the toilets are situated on ground level and this combined with the necessary bench work and filed work could create difficulties for disabled students enrolling in Archaeology.

The high percentage of female students in the Department has already been commented on in 3(ii). Women are also well represented on the staff and the Head of Department is one of the University's three women professors. Aboriginal students have taken courses within the Department and spoke favourably on the Department's courses and programmes. The Committee believes the Department might liaise more closely with the University's Aboriginal Programmes group to actively encourage wider interaction where appropriate, and also to encourage increased Aboriginal enrolments. The Committee believes there could be considerable interest by Aboriginal students in studies in Archaeology and that the University, as the only major provider of archaeological studies in Western Australia, has a particular opportunity and responsibility to attract Aboriginal students to this discipline and develop co-operative teaching and research ventures. In particular, the Committee sees the desirability of Aboriginal students majoring in Archaeology.

The Committee was made aware of serious allegations of inequitable behaviour within the Department. It was put to the Committee that some students and staff became afraid to speak freely and students in particular were indisposed towards a clear exposition of their viewpoints for fear of public ridicule. If this is true, issues of free academic enquiry are in question. The Committee believes that the Vice-Chancellor, in conjunction with the Equity Officer, should investigate these allegations.

3.2(xiii) The relationships with government and community groups, with particular reference to the development of courses and research programmes

The University is the major provider of studies in Archaeology in Western Australia. In conjunction with the Maritime Museum, Curtin University offers a postgraduate diploma specializing in maritime archaeology and the Head of Department acts as an adviser to this course. Murdoch University has expertise in material science which could be appropriate to the conservation of metal artefacts. The various branches of the Western Australian Museum also have a range of archaeological expertise which could be utilised to enable the Department to increase its course offerings either by bringing in outside expertise to assist in teaching or for supervising in additional areas. Cross- institutional contacts probably do already exist but there is a perception that they are nowhere near as strong as they were previously or could be. The Committee agrees that it is important to maintain standards and Departmental and disciplinary integrity. However, it also believes that, there is value in drawing an outside expertise to expand present course offerings and research activities. For example, the Western Australian Museum staff includes an international expert on rock art. The Committee also believes that increased contact with the outside community would be in the interests of promoting the discipline as a whole within Western Australia and for the Department as part of a growth strategy. The expansion of such links could lead to the development of valuable cross- institutional, educationally innovative programmes. The Department would also be better placed to become aware of, and to take initiatives regarding, the needs of the community where these are appropriate to the Department's academic role.

The Head of the Department has played a major and prominent role in a number of important committees outside the University. In particular she is appointed by the Minister for Aboriginal Affairs to the Aboriginal Cultural Materials Committee nd it is widely accepted that she has been largely responsible for the considerable improvement of standards of archaeological consulting work in the field and the quality of its reporting in Western Australia.

The Aboriginal Cultural Materials Committee, established under the provisions of the Aboriginal Heritage Act, is required to assess reports on activities which might breach section 18 of the Act and, under Section 16, to issue permits to work in areas covered by the Act. The Centre for Prehistory, of which the Head of Department is the Director, is a major contender for such work. There is a perception within elements of the archaeological "industry" that this represents conflict of interest. Some of its more vocal members have complained openly that the Committee has discriminated in favour of the Centre for Prehistory when examining applications and assessing reports. There have been references to a "closed shop". The Committee believes that the Head of Department, in carrying out her duties ag a member of the Committee, has acted in the interests of both the Aboriginal people and Archaeology in general. The Committee does however, believe that she has been placed in a very difficult position by the demands of her joint roles as Director of the Centre and the senior Archaeologist on the Committee (whose views must therefore carry considerable weight). There could be perceptions of conflicts of interest by outsiders unfamiliar with the Committee's procedures.

The Centre, through its operation in the commercial world, is occasionally the subject of criticism. This is especially the case from some practising consultant archaeologists who see their commercial existence and professional livelihood threatened. There is also the possibility that organisations, such as mining companies, whose interests are largely driven by the prospect of contracts worth hundreds of millions of dollars, may well take considerable exception to recommendations against mining activity made by consultancy bodies such as the Centre. The present period is one of considerable difficulty and it has been recognised that a review is necessary.

The Centre originated as a self funding unit and has developed into the Department's commercial arm. In addition to providing valuable financial support to the Department it has been an excellent source of practical fieldwork and report writing experience for senior students who have worked under the guidance and supervision of staff. Notwithstanding these obvious benefits, the Committee believes that at present the Centre may no longer be needed to serve its original role and imposes a heavy administrative burden on a small number of academic staff and could become a liability rather than an asset. The Committee recognises that it is difficult for a small Department to host a significant Centre as well as to attend to its essential teaching and research roles. The Committee therefore believes the Centre should be closed.

The Committee does not reject the possibility that, at some stage in the future, the University might once again avail itself of direct involvement in commercial opportunities in the field of Archaeology. Any such future development would be best distanced from the Department and be seen as a University administered activity rather than a Departmental one. In the meantime, opportunities for research based consultancies will exist with organisations such as the Australian Heritage Commission.

3.2(xiv) The trends in the employment of graduates and factors which may affect their transition from higher education to the workforce.

The present depressed state of the economy has probably also affected Archaeology graduates. Whilst institutions such as museums are at present unable to expand their staff or research activities, the Committee was pleased to note that current Museum staff are enrolled as postgraduates within the Department. The Department is the only major provider of archaeology graduates in Western Australia and is well-placed to take advantage of any upswing in the market when it occurs However, opportunities for careers in contract archaeology are strong. There is a perception that there will be considerable growth and opportunities in this area and cultural heritage management will continue to become available through Commonwealth, State and Local Government as well as agencies such as non-government organisations. There is at present, continuing need for the training of professionals in this area and participation of University archaeologists in it.

There is an increasing emphasis in school curricula on multi- culturalism and Aboriginal studies. Graduates could therefore be increasingly drawn to the teaching profession. In its undergraduate teaching, the Department serves a vital role in creating greater awareness of the Aboriginal past and the history of the Aboriginal people in the long period of their sole occupation of the continent. The Committee endorses the steps which the Department has taken towards increasing interest in Archaeology in schools.

3.2(xv) The initiatives by and impact on the department of the full-fee programme for overseas students.

At the moment the full-fee programme has had little, if any, effect on the Department. However, staff research interests in Asia and the Pacific are growing. The staff should be encouraged to make increased contact with overseas archaeologists and government officials in museums and antiquities services with a view to the possibility of attracting them into higher degrees in Archaeology in this University, as part of their professional development and further training.

3.3 To report an any other relevant matters

Archaeology in Western Australia has the potential to be an area of growth of national importance. The Committee is unamimous in its belief that there is a great need to foster and encourage this growth. In particular, the Committee believes the University has a unique responsibility to take a lead in this process. The University should not only set the standards for Archaeology in Western Australia, it also has a responsibility to help in the co-ordination and direction of the discipline, at all levels, throughout the State. Steps should be taken to deal with any present difficulties that the Department is experiencing, and it should be strongly encouraged to take advantage of any opportunities to develop its student base and to maintain its high profile in research.


The Committee believes that Recommendations 1-3 relate to matters of serious concern to the University and require urgent attention. Recommendations 4-12 relate to matters that should be addressed at the appropriate level.


that the Vice-Chancellor investigates, as a matter of priority, the management practices within the Department.


that the Vice-Chancellor, resolves the divisions that have developed within the Department.


that the Vice-Chancellor, in conjunction with the Equity Officer, investigates purportedly inequitable behaviour within the Department.


that the activities of the Centre for Prehistory be discontinued for the time being. The Committee recommends that the Department, continues its involvement in research oriented consultancies.


that the Department investigates ways and means of increasing inter- departmental and cross-institutional contact with a view to further developing research programmes and team teaching, and thus extending the range of course offerings.


that the Department continues to take steps to reduce the attrition rate in Archaeology 120.


that the Department takes immediate steps to ensure that any perceived problems with research supervision are rectified.


that consideration be given to the relocation of the Department into the Division of Arts and Architecture.


that the Accommodation Committee gives sympathetic consideration to the growing accommodation needs of the Department and accepts the need for a storage facility to be located at ground floor level in the immediate vicinity of the Department and for the Department to have access to a wet laboratory.


that the Department gives priority to the acquisition of expanded laboratory equipment and additional equipment and that the Division considers ways of helping the Department meet such requirements.


that the Department liaises more closely with the University's Aboriginal Programmes group in developing and promoting access of Aboriginal students to archaeological training.


that the Department be assisted to overcome its present difficulties and encouraged to promote the discipline of Archaeology in Western Australia.

Associate Professor N Bruce

Professor B Moulden

Professor I McBride

18th December 1991