Consultation on the revised CIfA fieldwork Standards and universal guidance

An invitation to consult on the revised Standards and universal guidance for field evaluation, archaeological excavation, and archaeological watching brief

CIfA is updating and reformatting its suite of technical Standards and supporting guidance for archaeological practice to ensure the information is fit-for-purpose and applicable to all those engaged in archaeological work, wherever they may be based. This programme of work forms a key objective in the Institute’s 2021-2030 strategic plan and has involved restructuring the current documents, providing information that is universally applicable, and exploring different delivery mechanisms to promote greater accessibility. The focus has been on the three key fieldwork Standards and guidance documents in the first instance (field evaluation, archaeological excavation, and archaeological watching brief) and these drafts are now ready for circulation and comment. This work has been supported by a Standards panel comprising CIfA members from across the historic environment sector.

Consultation invitation
CIfA invites you to review and comment on the redrafted Standard and guidance information for the following areas of archaeological practice

  • Field evaluation
  • Archaeological excavation
  • Archaeological watching brief

There are six documents in total, a Standard for each area of archaeological practice and its corresponding universal guidance clauses - see below. Please note that the consultation documents are shorter than the current versions but will still require some time to review, in addition to considering and answering the consultation questions. We would like to thank you in advance for the time taken; collecting feedback and comments is an essential part of the process and we greatly appreciate your involvement. Before reviewing the documents and submitting your feedback please read the ‘Background information' document below which provides some context to the work being undertaken.

How to respond 
A list of questions has been compiled as part of a survey to help us gather as much detailed feedback as possible. The survey is anonymous unless you choose to identify yourself. It would be very helpful if you could complete this. We also welcome responses by email (if that is preferable) and a copy of the consultation questions to consider when providing your email feedback can be found below.

Survey link

Email feedback please send to
Copy of survey questions for email responses can be accessed here.

The consultation will close Thursday 6 April 2023.

Please contact Jen if you have any queries or would like to request the documents in a different format for review.