Welcome to "Interpretation for Archeologists: A Guide to Increasing Knowledge, Skills and Abilities!" Interpretation can help the NPS to protect archeological resources by engendering a stewardship ethic in the public through the development of meaningful, personal connections to the resources. By working through this guide and associated materials archeologists may gain a firm foundation in and understanding of the purpose, philosophy, and techniques of interpretation.
This guide and its counterpart, Archeology for Interpreters: A Guide to Knowledge of the Resource, support Effective Interpretation of Archeological Resources: The Archeology-Interpretation Shared Competency Course of Study (Module 440). An interdisciplinary work group of archeologists and interpreters, led by John Jameson, Tony Knapp, and Dave Dahlen, developed this training module in response to the NPS Employee Training and Development Strategy. Through this joint course of study archeologists and interpreters can be trained together in the skills and abilities needed to carry out effective interpretation of archeological resources. Interpretation and education help to protect archeological resources by engendering stewardship in the public by forming personal connections to the resources.
Interpretation for Archeologists: A Guide to Increasing Knowledge, Skills and Abilities is not a substitute for Effective Interpretation of Archeological Resources. Rather, it introduces the purpose, philosophy, and techniques of interpretation that the Archeology-Interpretation Shared Competency Course of Study more fully explores. Know, as well, that although the training course concentrates on Module 101, Fulfilling the NPS Mission: The Process of Interpretation, we encourage archeologists to continue independently by pursuing other modules and competencies. Interpretation for Archeologists gets you started through many recommendations of links and readings to learn more about incorporating interpretation into your archeology toolkit.
Try It Yourself
Interpretation of Archeological Resources: The Archeology-Interpretation
Shared Competency Course of Study (Module 440)
Effective Interpretation is a professional development opportunity. Use its training tools to help archeologists and interpreters at your park work together to provide effective and accurate interpretation of archeological information and resources to the public.
Archeology for Interpreters: A Guide
to Knowledge of the Resource
This interactive on-line guide complements Interpretation for Archeologists. It creates the opportunity for interpreters to learn about archeological methods, to explore how archeological interpretations are made, to ascribe meaning to archeological resources, and to increase public understanding and concern for the preservation and protection of archeological resources. It provides an excellent perspective on the kinds of knowledge people need in order to understand archeology, and provides information on resources to peruse.
Study Tour of Archeological Interpretation
View interpretation with “fresh eyes” to evaluate choices and strategies for interpreting archeology in parks and historic sites. Download worksheets to assist in evaluating both onsite interpretation and virtual visits.
For Your Information
NPS Interpretive Development
The Interpretive Development Program is designed to foster professionalism in interpretation in the National Park Service. Check out the web site for immediate access to the latest curricula, resources, contacts, FAQs, and other information to develop your own personalized training program for interpretive excellence.
Stewardship Career Field
The Cultural Resources Stewardship Career Field enhances knowledge, skills, and abilities for employees and partner organizations who work in cultural resources and are associated with them. Visit the website to learn about competencies, training, and the specialized needs of cultural resources managers.
Inspiring Guide”: Effective Interpretation of Archeological
This manual describes a curriculum that is adaptable to any geographic region and may be adapted by any agency or organization desiring to improve the quality of archeological presentation to the public. Employing the concept of “shared competency,” archeologists and interpreters receive training in each other’s disciplines and work together to provide effective and accurate interpretation of archeological information and resources to the public.