This is the first semester that I have taken ANTH 4385 and I really enjoyed this class if I had space in my schedule I would have taken this course again. One of the things that I liked best in this class was that we were outside of the classroom and doing work with our own hands. When I had first signed up for the class I wasn’t exactly certain what we were going to do but I did know that I needed it for my major. I did think that we would be working instead of just reading and classwork. When we had our first class meeting it was a little intimidating because there wasn’t much information on what we were going to be doing. One of the things that I can still remember is that someone said that we would get the hang of it and I must agree with that. The first time that we went to the cemetery was kind of intimidating, but it was a lot easier because we had ended up splitting into pairs and if we were both new we could talk to each other and figure things out and know that we weren’t alone in feeling lost. By the end of the semester it was easy to fall into an easy-going rhythm. This class was interesting because I’ve never really taken another course like this or another project like it. It was also very informative and educational especially with the reading that we had to read each week. The reading were kind of hard to understand but after reading them it was interesting to see how they connected back to the work that we were doing at the cemetery and to the readings before and after it. Another thing that I found interesting was the actual work that we were doing in the cemetery. I had never really thought that archaeology could be anywhere even in a cemetery. One thing that don’t really understand would be why we recorded the material that the headstone was made of. Was it to help identify the grave or was it to learn more about the person? Like I imagine that a person with a wooden marker might not have had as much money as someone with a limestone one but that’s just a guess. This class did have problems, but they weren’t that big of a deal or a huge inconvenience. One of them was the technology but I’m mostly talking about the website and app. Kobo toolbox wasn’t really the easiest to work with but I’m not sure if that has to do with my phone or the actual website. It sometimes didn’t let you upload picture and when it did that you would have to reload the grave that you were working on. Something else that was kind of an inconvenience was the weather but that’s just mainly because I never check the weather before going to the cemetery, so I end up getting surprised if it ends up drizzling or being too sunny.
The way that I think this class should change in the future would be to maybe do more to let the students of UTRGV know that we have this class. Before signing up for this class I never knew that we classes like it. When I told my sister what this class was about they didn’t know about it either, but they were interested in it. So, I think that if more students were aware of this class and classes like it they would be excited to register. Something else that I think should change with this class is the way that we connect with the community. The way the class is right now feels like we aren’t really connecting with the community and letting them know what we are doing and getting them involved or interested in the project. So, I think something about that should also change. Overall this class was amazing, and it taught me a lot about archaeology and archaeologists that I didn’t know about and it did it in a fun and interesting way.