Maxine Oland

Maxine Oland

Lecturer, Anthropology

Winter 2018 Innovation Fellow

Fellow Project & Instructional Interests

I am an anthropological archaeologist working in Mesoamerica. I study the Maya people of Belize from the 15th through the 20th century, their interactions with European and other indigenous groups, and their eventual incorporation into the global economy.

At UMASS I teach large lecture classes (up to 330 students) about archaeology that fill General Education requirements. Most of my students will not be archaeologists, but I hope to inspire them to think about the world archaeologically. How do humans shape their world materially and spatially, and how are they shaped in return? What do ancient societies teach us about our contemporary world? Who owns the past, and why does it matter? I currently use iClicker, but am committed to learning new ways to interact and engage with my students in the large lecture setting. I want to encourage critical thinking and engagement with the material, rather than passive listening.