He described the purpose of classification as: Kreiger said of classification systems: "Considering the vast amount of time and thought put into them, is there any reason to believe that their groupings will help to discover the true historical meaning of the myriad works of man?" According to Rouse (1960) classification is the ’act of assigning to a proper class’.
This is called ’seriation’ and allows for assemblages of artefacts to be arranged in a serial order which is taken to indicate their ordering in time (Renfrew & Bahn, 2000). In contextual seriation the duration of different artefact styles dictates the serial order.Classes are then defined by listing criteria used to create them, and in order to attain a specific objective, classification must select the criteria which are to be considered ’diagnostic of one’s class’.Rouse stated that archaeologists select these criteria to meet one of two objectives: to form either ’modes’ (analytic classification) or ’types’ (taxonomic classification).This course is largely about the methods of archaeological practice, including both the means by which observations about the world are collected and organized, and how archaeologists recognize and interpret patterning in such observations.Although the prerequisite for this course is simply any other course in anthropology, students who have taken introductory archaeology (ANT3140) may have less difficulty than others following the material of Principles.(1) develop working knowledge of archaeological methods in field and laboratory research including survey, excavation, stratigraphic interpretation, dating, inference, analogy, typology, and the reconstruction and interpretation of settlement, subsistence, social relations, and belief systems; (2) learn how archaeologists make inferences about human behavior and practice by recognizing patterning in the distribution, form, and context of material remains; (3) understand how archaeological records are created and transformed; and (4) develop a sense of stewardship over the irreplaceable resources of the archaeological record.