You need to
understand, define and use the key concepts associated with these themes
be familiar with a range of relevant case studies for your period which each cover several topics
be able to synthesise ideas and data from case studies to respond to a variety of types of questions
write well-structured and relevant essays.
Although material culture and economics are different themes, there is considerable overlap in relevant case studies. Economics is concerned with how people manage the cultural and natural resources available to them. Material culture is concerned with the things (in their broadest sense) that people made and what they signified.
Material learnt for one theme can usually be applied to the other. There are also strong links with the post excavation analysis covered in Chapter 3. You need to link your grasp of methods to your case studies in order to be able to appraise their strengths and weaknesses. Other major links include interpretation (Chapter 5), particularly the use of ethnographic and experimental analogies, and the use of geographic models to interpret distribution patterns and site function (p. 178).
This is a fundamental question in most periods. Many writers have assumed that the type of economic system used largely determines the nature of society. Indeed, archaeologists define many societies according to how they acquired their food. If your course is thematic, you need to ensure that you have case studies from a range of societies. ‘Hunter-gatherer’ is a label