PhD – Geoarchaeology, University of Wollongong

The Position
Applications are invited for PhD positions within the Centre for Archaeological Science (CAS), University of Wollongong (UOW). CAS is currently increasing capacity and consolidating its research strengths, and as a result we are looking for excellent PhD candidates to join our team working in the fields of Geoarchaeology and Archaeological Science, with topics focusing on micromorphology, geomorphology, sedimentology, archaeological site formation processes, geochemistry and Quaternary stratigraphy.

Specific topics might include:

  • Micromorphological signatures of tropical environmental change recorded in cave and rockshelter sediment sequences in humid tropical environments
  • The application of FTIR and Raman spectroscopy in tandem with micromorphology to reconstruct the depositional and post-depositional histories of archaeological sites
  • River system behavioural change in response to shifts in Quaternary climate, and implications for hominin exploitation of valley floor environments and riverine resources
  • Late Pleistocene lake catchment dynamics and the peopling of Australia

It is also possible for candidates to submit their own project proposals providing that these tie in with one or more of the research interests outlined above.

Funding opportunities are available, with good candidates encouraged to apply for the various university-wide schemes available at UOW and CAS

The Institution
CAS was established at UOW in 2010 to develop, integrate and apply modern scientific techniques to answer fundamental questions about human evolution and the analysis of material remains of past human life and activities. CAS is affiliated with the School of Earth & Environmental Sciences (SEES), bringing together researchers drawn from the physical, chemical, biological and geological sciences in partnership with science-based archaeologists. This means that there is plenty of scope to interact and collaborate with experts from across the Earth Sciences, and indeed PhD candidates are encouraged to do so. Geoarchaeology at CAS is led by Dr Mike Morley and Prof. Paul Goldberg, with whom successful candidates would work closely during their PhD program.

At CAS we have world-class laboratory facilities, including a fully equipped optical microscopy facility, a geoarchaeology and sedimentology laboratory, and FTIR and Raman spectroscopy. Our multi-disciplinary team allows for potential collaboration across a wide range of fields of expertise.

The Candidate
The candidate will have a first class undergraduate degree in Archaeology, Archaeological Science, the Earth Sciences, or a related discipline. A postgraduate qualification, although not strictly essential, would be highly desirable, as would a proven track record of publication. Candidates that can prove high levels of proficiency acquired outside of higher education (e.g. in commercial consultancy) will also be considered.

The successful applicant will be fully committed to conducting independent and original scientific research, and will be expected to disseminate this research in peer-reviewed international journal papers and conference presentations, as well as in their final PhD thesis. The PhD candidate will be encouraged to undertake training in relevant analytical techniques.


If you are interested in applying for one of these positions please contact Dr Mike Morley by email ( in the first instance to arrange an informal discussion about the available options.


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