This program consists of an A/V presentation, a hands-on workshop and a tour of related shipwreck material in the museum. It introduces the concept of archaeology, outlines the development of maritime archaeology and highlights the specifics of working on a submerged site.

Students examine artefacts from shipwrecks, interpret evidence, investigate the role of maritime archaeologists, conservators and curators, and consider the heritage value of shipwrecks.

Curriculum references (NSW)

NSW Ancient History Stage 6
Ancient History 8.1
Investigating the Past: History, Archaeology and Science
1, 2, 3, 4, 5 NSW Marine Studies Optional Module 18: Marine Archaeology

Program structure

A/V Presentation

The workshop focuses on four areas of science related to the sea - buoyancy, corrosion, communication and navigation. These are investigated through a series of observations, activities and experiments. Other options may be available dependent on temporary exhibitions.


Students examine artefacts from shipwrecks, investigate archaeological techniques and consider the interpretation of archaeological material. A professional museum conservator presents a session on identifying a range of materials such as bone, metals and fibres and drawing conclusions from the findings (subject to availability).


Students view a range of shipwreck material on display and are required to observe, analyse, hypothesise and justify.


Price: $15 per student.

Teachers and supervising adults visit FREE of charge within the ratios specified in Plan Your School Visit. Additional adults will be charged the student rate.

More information

  • Duration and start/finish times: contingent upon student numbers and will be arranged and explained during booking.
  • Breaks: you're welcome to take recess or lunch at the museum before or after the program, but mid-program breaks must be arranged at time of booking.
  • Entry to exhibitions and vessels: all bookings include FREE entry to museum exhibitions and HMAS Vampire, time permitting. All other vessels require pre-booking. A supervisor/student ratio of 1:15 applies on HMAS Vampire.
  • Location: all programs begin and end at the Australian National Maritime Museum, 2 Murray Street, Darling Harbour, Sydney.