Health, disease, and lifestyle in the past

Health, disease, and lifestyle in the past

Course dates:
5 July, 2021 to 16 July, 2021
EU/EEA citizens 8000 DKK/Non-EU/EEA citizens 12,500 DKK
Fee advantages:
Full fee
Engineering & Sciences, Medicine
Application deadline:
Thursday, 1 April, 2021
University of Copenhagen
Copenhagen, Denmark

General information

This two-week course is about what we can learn from examining archaeological human and animal skeletal remains in order to reconstruct the lives of people who lived in the past.  It will provide students with a broad but detailed introduction to scientific methods and theories in osteoarchaeology to answer questions about health, disease, and lifestyle in the past. The scientific investigation of human skeletal remains gives unique insights into human history, demographic shifts, environmental changes, living conditions, migrations, pathologies, and the spread of diseases, as these all leave traces on the skeleton. Animal remains provide evidence on human food sources, activities, and the environment and climate in the past.

Population density and migrations have had an impact on spread of vira, bacteria, and parasites through thousands of years. Applying biomolecular methods such as ancient DNA, pathogens, paleoproteomics and isotope analysis allows us to better understand the development of diseases and health at the individual and the population level.


Please note that the summer courses are non-residential. Participants are responsible for finding and funding accommodation during their stay in Copenhagen.

You can use different online portals to search for accommodation, such as:

Hostel World

UCPH Housing Foundation (acceptance letter from UCPH required).


Application form

ECTS accreditation

Master level


Contact information