Karst Field Studies Program
Dates: June 3, 2018 - June 9, 2018
Organization: Karst Geology
University Affiliation: Western Kentucky University
Terrestrial: Yes
Underwater: No
State: Kentucky


  • Karst Geology, June 3-9, Dr. Art Palmer
  • Exploration of Mammoth Cave, June 18-22, Mr. Bruce Hatcher and Mr. David Kem
  • Karst Resources of Grand Canyon National Park, June 18-24, Dr. Ben Tobin and Dr. Abe Springer
  • Visualization of Karst Field Data, June 11-16, Dr. Pat Kambesis and Mr. Howard Kalnitz
  • Field Cave Ecology, anticipated July (official dates not yet determined), Dr. Julian Lewis
  • Show Cave Interpretation and Education, August 5-10, Dr. Leslie North

Courses may be taken for graduate, undergraduate, or continuing education credit. Courses may also be taken as non-credit workshops.

For more information about the program, courses, how to register, and instructor bios, please visit www.karstfieldstudies.com.

If you have any questions please contact the Karst Field Studies Director, Dr. Leslie North, at leslie.north@wku.edu.
Please sign-up for our mailing list through our website or follow us through our social media accounts at Instagram @karstfieldstudies, Twitter @KFSWKU, Facebook @WKUKarstfieldstudies

Please help us spread the word about the program by forwarding this message to your colleagues, grotto members, staff, students, friends, and any other parties you feel may be interested in this year’s courses!

Hope to see you this summer!

US-CO: Amache
Dates: June 10, 2018 - July 14, 2018
Organization: ifrglobal.org
Application Closing Date: April 20, 2018
Terrestrial: Yes
Underwater: No
State: null
Description: Instructor: Dr. Bonnie Clark 8 Semester credits. Scholarships. Open to all majors. More details at ifrglobal.org The Amache Archaeology and Heritage Management Field School is part of a long-term community collaborative project at Amache, a World War II-era Japanese American confinement camp in southeastern Colorado. This project provides a rare opportunity for students to work with survivors in synergistic investigations of the past and its meaning in the present at a National Historic Landmark. Working on-site and in the Amache museum, participants in the field school, gain hands-on experience in intensive site survey, historic artifact analysis, ground penetrating radar, landscape archaeology, collections management, public interpretation and outreach, and community-based research.
Advanced Field Experience in Bioarchaeology
Dates: September 17, 2018 - October 12, 2018
Organization: Institute for Research and Learning in Archeology and Bioarchaeology
Application Closing Date: September 2, 2018
Pdf External Web Site: https://www.irlabnp.org/advanced-field-experience-in-bioarchaeology/
Terrestrial: Yes
Underwater: No
State: Ohio


The excavation of human burials is a sensitive undertaking that must be carried out with utmost professionalism. Specialized bioarchaeological training is essential to ensure that human burials are uncovered, documented, and removed properly, that is, without damaging the remains or destroying precious information. However, unless they have specialized in the excavation of human remains, even professional archaeologists may not always be up to the task.

This field-based program was developed specifically for advanced students and CRM professionals interested in furthering their professional training by acquiring bioarchaeological skills and experience.

By working in small groups, side-by-side with IRLAB’s professional team, participants will have the opportunity to excavate burials from start to finish. Upon completion of the program, participants will have learned how to properly identify, excavate, document, and remove human burials in archaeological context.


Upon completion of the program, participants will have become familiar with the following major components of human burial excavation, and related learning objectives:

  • Stratigraphic interpretation of human burials
    • Learn how to identify burial cuts.
    • Understand the stratigraphic relations between adjacent contexts.
    • Interpret the different components of a burial and the distinct funerary behavioral actions they represent.
  • Bioarchaeological excavation techniques
    • Become familiar with the proper methods, tools, and techniques for excavating the different components of human burials, with a focus on exposing skeletal remains while minimizing bone destruction and information loss.
    • Learn how to interpret taphonomic processes from the examination of the skeletal elements in the field.
    • Learn how to conduct basic analyses of the remains in situ to develop a preliminary biological profile in the field;
    • Learn how to efficiently remove skeletal elements and maximize their preservation for study.
  • State-of-the-art documentation of human burials
    • Learn how to collect spatial information on human burials using a total station and GIS.
    • Learn the proper documentation protocols through the use of IRLAB’s dedicated Stratigraphic Unit and Skeletal Context sheets.
    • Become familiar with the criteria for properly photographing skeletal contexts and the methods for developing 3D reconstructions of human burials using photogrammetry.
  • Theoretical approaches and ethical considerations related to the excavation of human remains
    • Become familiar with the different theoretical approaches in bioarchaeology, and understand how they influence the excavation of burial grounds.
    • Understand the different circumstances and reasons for excavating human remains, to inform the excavation strategy and research approaches.


Excavations will take place at the Harrison Township Cholera Cemetery (HTCC), located just 20 minutes away from downtown Columbus, OH. The site is the object of an ongoing project with the aim of excavating, studying, and restoring an abandoned historic cemetery. Learn more…

Excavation will take place daily, Monday through Friday, between 9:00 am and 5:00 pm, with a short lunch break. All participants will be required to attend a general orientation at the beginning of the program, and daily briefings in the morning prior to starting fieldwork. IRLAB does not provide meals, lodging or transportation as part of this program, and participants are expected to make their own arrangements.

Participants who would require to make lodging arrangements may benefit from IRLAB’s negotiated group rates at the Woodspring Suites Columbus Urbancrest in Grove City, OH. Simply indicate your interest in the online application or contact David Hubin, Project Manager, anytime upon admission.


Participation in the program will provide participants with exposure to all of the elements of human burial excavation outlined in the Learning Objectives of the program.  In order to accommodate the needs of professional schedules, this program is organized in two distinct, additive modules. Each module may be taken as a stand-alone program, although both modules combined provide the best training and experience. Individuals interested in acquiring bioarchaeological experience to serve in leading roles in the recovery of human remains should participate in both modules.

Stratigraphy and Taphonomy

September 17 – 30

This module is focused on the general setup of a bioarchaeological excavation, with emphasis on understanding the general context and stratigraphy of the site or excavation area. The first few days will be spent detecting all relevant features within the excavation area, identifying grave cuts, and determining the stratigraphic relations between contexts. Thereafter, the most superficial layers of the area will be removed mechanically to allow for easier access to the burials. Burials will then be exposed, documented, and removed. Participants in this module will also be required to complete select readings on stratigraphy and taphonomy prior to the program.

Theory and Ethical Practice of Bioarchaeology

October 1 – 13

This module is effectively the prosecution of the previous one, and is focused primarily on the excavation of human remains once all burial cuts have been identified. In groups of 2-3 people, participants will learn the methods and techniques necessary for the proper excavation, documentation, and recovery of human remains in archaeological context. Participants in this module will also be required to complete select readings on the theory of bioarchaeology and participate in group discussions concerning the ethical implications of excavating human remains.


The program accepts a limited number of participants and welcomes applications from professional archaeologists, as well as advanced undergraduate and graduate students in archaeology, anthropology or allied disciplines from any country and institution. Current enrollment in a university is not a requirement. All applications are evaluated equally and acceptance decisions are primarily based on merit.

The only prerequisite of the program is prior archaeological excavation experience. Human osteological knowledge (typically through the completion of an Osteology course) is not required, but extremely advantageous.


Individuals interested in applying for the field experience must fill out and submit the online Application Form.

The application deadline is September 2, 2018. However, applications are reviewed as soon as they are received and applicants accepted on a first come, first served basis.

Curriculum vitae and/or reference letters (e-mails) may be requested. The staff reserves the right to verify any of the information reported in the application form and request supporting documentation (e.g., advising reports; references) in its sole discretion. Staff will make final decisions regarding enrollment. Acceptance will be communicated by e-mail.

US-CT: Mohegan
Dates: June 20, 2018 - July 27, 2018
Organization: ifrglobal.org
Terrestrial: Yes
Underwater: No
State: null
Description: Instructor: Dr. Craig N. Cipolla 8 Semester credits. Scholarships. Open to all majors. More details at ifrglobal.org The Mohegan field school studies colonial-era sites on the Mohegan Reservation in an innovative collaborative setting. The study of reservation households sheds new light on the rhythms and materiality of everyday life during tumultuous times while providing valuable perspectives on the long-term outcomes of colonial repression, survivance, interaction, and exchange. The field school brings together students and staff of diverse backgrounds to learn about colonial history, the history of North American archaeology, and—most importantly—the often-troubled relationship between archaeologists and indigenous communities. The field school runs as an equal partnership between the Tribe and an academic archaeologist.

Field Schools in Australia/New Zealand

Archaeology Convict Field School
Dates: December 4, 2018 - January 31, 2019
Organization: University of Tasmania
University Affiliation: University of Tasmania
Application Closing Date: October 31, 2018
Pdf External Web Site: http://www.utas.edu.au/arts-law-education/study/convict-archaeology
Terrestrial: Yes
Underwater: No

Spend your summer in Tasmania's Southern Midlands on an archaeological excavation and earn 12.5 points/6 units towards your degree.

2nd and 3rd year university students across Australia and internationally will learn online about Tasmania's rich record of convict's lives in captivity and work onsite using the latest techniques in excavating historic convict sites. We'll also visit UNESCO World-Heritage listed convict sites at Ross and Port Arthur.

With around 76,000 convicts transported to Tasmania from Britain, and other parts of the then British Empire in the 19th century, our island has a rich archaeological record of their lives in captivity. Now is the perfect time to take part in an archaeological field school investigating the site of a former convict probation station. You’ll be introduced to the latest techniques in excavating historic convict sites to reveal stories from the past.

Archaeology has the potential to provide unique insights into our past.

Expressions of Interest close 31 October.

First two weeks of December 2018 (online),
Last two weeks in January 2019 (onsite)

Intake: Nov 2018 – Feb 2019

General Enquiries:
E: ASC.Contact@utas.edu.au
T: +61 3 6226 6365

What's involved

  • Two weeks of online learning.
  • A two-week field school.
  • Team work.
  • Excavating objects.
  • Learn to understand the found objects in context, then how to clean, categorise, and store them.
  • Learn how to consider maps, plans, and other historical records to understand the site’s convict past.


  • Current enrolled student at a university in Australia or internationally. Find out more about cross institutional enrolment.
  • Minimum 25% at 100 level (two x first year units) and have space to fit our 200 or 300 level unit into your degree.
  • All students will be required to have a current tetanus vaccination (last five years) and be fit enough to engage in fieldwork on remote location.


  • Along with the normal unit cost an additional field school cost will apply.
  • Tuition fees, and a AUD$1200 per student.
  • AUD$300 deposit paid in full to secure your place.
  • Option to pay $300 instalments by 30 November 2018.
  • Students travel expenses from interstate or internationally will be your own cost.

Field Schools in Canada

Canada: Fort Vermilion
Dates: July 1, 2018 - July 28, 2018
Organization: ifrglobal.org
Application Closing Date: April 20, 2018
Terrestrial: Yes
Underwater: No
State: null
Description: Instructors: Dr. Shawn Bubel, Dr. Heinz Pyszczyk, Bob Dawe 8 Semester credits. Scholarships. Open to all majors. More details at ifrglobal.org This field school is located in northern Alberta, a terrain that is stunningly beautiful. Here students will be investigating Fort Vermilion (1798 – 1830) and other settlements. These studies will examine the establishment of the Canadian based North West Company (NWC), which created trade posts from Lake Athabasca up the Peace River to today’s Fort St. John, British Columbia. Fort Vermilion is an ideal site to investigate the geopolitical, social, and cultural dynamics of the fur trade. The site still promises much to be uncovered, as minimal research campaigns have been carried out at the site since its discovery in 1998. These excavations revealed stratified layers of occupation, making it one of the first stratified fur trade sites ever identified in Alberta. By applying insights gained through archaeological, anthropological, and historical research, the current expedition is shedding new light on the people that lived and traded there.

Field Schools in Europe

Achill Archaeological Field School, Co. Mayo, Ireland 2019
Dates: May 5, 2019 - September 1, 2019
Organization: Achill Archaeological Field School
University Affiliation: National University of Ireland Galway
Pdf External Web Site: https://achill-fieldschool.com/
Terrestrial: Yes
Underwater: No

The Achill Archaeological Field School is Ireland’s oldest field school and has over 25 years of experience in training archaeology and anthropology students. Located on Achill Island on Ireland’s stunning Wild Atlantic Way, the field school combines top quality education with unforgettable experiences. We offer twelve-, eight-, six-, four-, and two-week courses between May and September. Our courses come with up to 9 Semester Credits/ 18 ECTS provided by the National University of Ireland Galway. The school provides hands-on training in excavation and surveying for archaeology and anthropology students. Courses cover a full range of excavation methods, recording techniques, and lab work. Field-based learning is supplemented by weekly field trips to local sites and monuments, and provides a series of evening lectures and workshops on topics of historical and archaeological interest.

In summer 2019 our training excavation will be at Caraun Point, a multi-period archaeological complex located on a sand-covered promontory on Achill’s north-east coast. The settlement complex includes an early medieval enclosure, multiple shell middens, a children’s burial ground, and a deserted early modern village. During initial work in 2018 we excavated one of the houses from the village and part of a shell midden. The dig yielded fascinating evidence for life in 18th century Achill, but many questions remain. In 2019 we will return to Caraun Point for the full season. Work will comprise thorough instrument survey, surface survey and excavation at the site, focusing on the early modern village. Students will also have a chance to participate in our public archaeology programme.

For more information email: info@achill-fieldschool.com

Ireland: Ferrycarrig
Dates: July 1, 2018 - July 28, 2018
Organization: ifrglobal.org
Terrestrial: Yes
Underwater: No
Description: Instructors: Dr. Denis Shine, Dr. Stephen Mandal 8 Semester credits. Scholarships. Open to all majors. More details at ifrglobal.org Built in 1,169 CE, Ferrycarrig is crucial to our understanding of the earliest stages of the Anglo-Norman invasion of Ireland. Probably one of the first permanent Norman fortifications to be built in Ireland, the site comprised a ringwork castle placed on a natural promontory overlooking the River Slaney and Wexford town. Today, the bank and ditch are all that remain above the ground but archaeological excavations in the 1980’s uncovered significant evidence of the fortifications preserved below ground. Ferrycarrig is located within the Irish National Heritage Park, an open-air museum which recreates the key stages in Ireland’s past, providing a stunning backdrop to the archaeological research site. Students will be exposed not only to archaeological investigation at the site but also to the many and myriad ways by which the public is presented, view and interpret the archaeological record.
Ireland: Inishbofin
Dates: June 3, 2018 - June 29, 2018
Application Closing Date: April 20, 2018
Terrestrial: Yes
Underwater: No
Description: Instructors: Dr. Ian Kuijt, Dr. Meredith Chesson 8 Semester credits. Scholarships. Open to all majors. More details at ifrglobal.org This field school offers students the opportunity to learn about the rich history, heritage and archaeology of coastal Ireland. Excavating on the islands of Inishbofin and Inishark, County Galway, Ireland, fifty miles west of Galway along the coast of Connemara, the Cultural Landscapes of the Irish Coast project (CLIC) has been working for 10 years to understand post 18th century island life. The 2018 excavations will focus on Building 5, a partially preserved stone three room house overlooking the Poirtíns, a small harbor in the located on the south-east corner of the 8 by 5 mile island of Inishbofin. In the 1830’s the fishing village of the Poirtíns was home to around 60 people. It is now abandoned with many of the stone buildings partially destroyed in the 1890’s when the upper sections of the houses were removed for building field walls. Although the island of Inishbofin has been lived on since the Bronze Age, very little is known about 18th and 19th century life before and after the Irish Famine on Inishbofin in general, and life in the Poirtíns in specific. This field school involves four weeks of practical instruction in the methods and theory of archaeological excavation in Historical Archaeology, field survey, and laboratory analysis of ceramic, class and metal objects.
Ireland: Spike Island
Dates: June 17, 2018 - July 21, 2018
Organization: ifrglobal.org
Application Closing Date: April 20, 2018
Terrestrial: Yes
Underwater: No
Description: Instructor: Dr. Barra O’Donnabhain 8 Semester credits. Scholarships. Open to all majors. More details at ifrglobal.org This field school is part of a larger research project that examines the development of modern prison systems through the study of the archaeology of the 19th century prison on Spike Island, Ireland’s Alcatraz. Strategically located at the mouth of Cork Harbour, the island was a military and naval base for over 200 years and is the site of the largest fortress in Ireland. For 36 years from 1847, the fort was used as a convict prison, initially as a crisis response to Ireland’s Great Famine (1845-1852). Dealing with criminals by means of long-term incarceration is a relatively recent development. In Ireland and Britain, long-term confinement only became the dominant means of punishment and social control in the mid-19th century. Globally, that century was a critical period for the development of the modern prison with considerable innovation and experimentation in punishment regimes. At the first International Penitentiary Congresses in the 1870s, the ‘Irish System’, was seen as a role model for other world areas and Spike Island had played a critical role in the development of this approach. The island was also a major point of embarkation transportation to Australia where convicts became part of an extraordinarily effect project in social engineering, providing the labour and population of new colonies. This will be the sixth season of excavations of the Spike Island Archaeological Project. The island is uninhabited but is visited by hundreds of tourists daily during the summer with hourly boats making the 1km journey to the nearby town of Cobh. The staff and students of the project live on the island in youth hostel-style accommodation in a modern and comfortable building. The 2018 field school will investigate deposits in the Victorian prison buildings while also exploring the convict cemetery. It provides students with the opportunity to spend 5 weeks in a unique location and to gain practical experience in excavation, bioarchaeology and historical archaeology at a site of global significance.
Spain: Modern Warfare
Dates: July 1, 2018 - August 1, 2018
Organization: ifrglobal.org
Application Closing Date: April 20, 2018
Terrestrial: Yes
Underwater: No
Description: Instructors: Dr. Alfredo González-Ruibal, Xurxo Ayán Vila, Salvatore Garfi, Víctor M. Fernández 8 Semester credits. Scholarships. Open to all majors. More details at ifrglobal.org In this field school students have the opportunity to participate in the historical and ongoing “Battle for Madrid” research study. This is part of a long-term project examining the archaeology of conflict in Spain, covering the civil war (1936-1939) and the Franco dictatorship (1939-1975). The project aims to understand the social experience of institutional and non-institutional violence and political repression using material culture as its main source. The project, which started in 2006, has examined a variety of war and postwar scenarios, from battlefields to social housing. The Spanish Civil War is the perfect place to understand modern mass violence through its archaeological signatures. The 2017 season intends to deploy a variety of state-of-the-art archaeological techniques to document and analyze the remains of the war and postwar period in and around Madrid. Among other places, we will be excavating two 19th-century buildings that saw heavy action between international pro-government soldiers and rebel troops in 1936. These buildings were bombed out and never reconstructed, thus offering a unique archaeological window into the war. This project excavates literally and metaphorically the myths of the Spanish Civil War that captured the worlds imagination and those of the dictatorship that followed.
UK: Pendle Hill Witches
Dates: June 16, 2018 - July 21, 2018
Organization: ifrglobal.org
Application Closing Date: April 20, 2018
Terrestrial: Yes
Underwater: No
Description: Instructor: Prof. Charles E. Orser, Jr. 8 Semester credits. Scholarships. Open to all majors. More details at ifrglobal.org The trial and subsequent execution of ten alleged witches in 1612 is the most famous witchcraft event in English history. Scholars have long wrestled with issues surrounding witchcraft and magic, with the Pendle Hill story featuring prominently. Investigations have focused on multiple aspects of the social, economic, and political conditions of the early 17th century, but this is the first concerted effort to use anthropological archaeology to examine the material basis of witchcraft, the integration of traditional healers in society, and the material conditions of everyday life in Lancashire in the late 16th and early 17th centuries.