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Field schools

Submitted by Anonymous on Fri, 01/30/2015 - 3:03pm

Field work is an important part of the student experience in anthropology and archaeology. There are opportunities for students to spend time in the field locally as well as internationally. 

Belize Primatology Field School: Students study the daily activities of the Black Howler Monkeys in Belize, learning all aspects of primate field research, including developing a sophisticated research proposal, and data collection techniques, while also applying classroom learning in primate behavior, ecology and evolution in an actual field situation. For more information please see the Group Study websiteInformation and Selection meeting TBA (Fall 2017).


Ghana Primatology Field School: Using primatological research as a point of entry, the Ghana field school teaches about biodiversity in West Africa. Students learn about conservation issues, and are exposed to several approaches to conservation, while learning to design a research project, collect and analyze data on the two species of primates found at the site, the black and white colobus and Campbell’s monkeys. For more information please see the Group Study website. Information and Selection meeting TBA (Fall 2017).

Cluny Fortified Village Archaeological Field School: The Cluny site (AD 1700) is located on the Bow River about 100 kilometres east of Calgary on the Siksika Blackfoot Reserve. Students excavate in living areas and in the fortification trench and palisade, and uncover remains such as animal bones, tools, pottery, and European trade goods such as glass beads. Excavation, cataloguing, analyzing, and interpreting the remains are all part of the experience. The field school is run in conjunction with the Blackfoot Crossing Historic Park Interpretive Centre. For more information, please contact Dr. Dale Walde.

Maya Archaeology and Ecology: Cultural Heritage Field Program: The Maya Archaeology and Ecology field program, part of the department’s Cultural Heritage Studies focus, offers a multidisciplinary approach to the study of Maya culture history and ecology through the two classes offered: ARKY 327, The Ancient Maya and ANTH/ARKY/GEOG 523, Human Ecology. The field program is integrated with the Yaxnohcah Archaeological Project, located in the Calakmul Biosphere, in southern Campeche, the largest protected rainforest in Mexico. The project research focuses on the earliest Maya inhabitants of this area, their adaptation to this unique environment, and the subsequent development of a multi-nodal urban landscape. In addition to daily presentations given in the Villahermosa Research Station classroom, students will participate in archaeological and environmental activities designed to enrich the lectures with hands-on experiential learning. For more information please visit the Group Study websiteInformation and Selection meeting TBA (Fall 2017).

Italy:  Hazards, Archaeology and Environment Field School: Explore human and environmental history in a part of the world that is iconic for its historic legacy, geologic dynamism, and natural beauty. The Italy Earth Science Field School will be a field program with a focus on natural hazards, archaeology, and environmental geography of Italy. The trip itinerary will focus on Italy’s rich cultural, historical, geologic, and environmental history through the lenses of earth science disciplines and methods. Topics of study will include regional sustainable development, ancient civilizations of the Italian peninsula, conservation, the legacy of centuries of environmental and heritage management, and the significance of the historical development of cities within this region. Maximum exposure to urban and rural landscapes will be available to participants through direct observation, instruction, and fieldwork, allowing students to build critical thinking skills in interpreting and making connections between human and natural landscapes. Destinations include Rome, Florence, Pitigliano, Tuscany, Cinque Terre, Aquila, the Amalfi Coast, and Pompeii. For more information please see the Group Study websiteInformation and Selection meeting TBA (Fall 2017).

Cuba, Its past, present and future
Over its history, Cuba has been a country of intrigue and of interest! We have loved it for its relative beauty, its beaches, its gifts of rumba, salsa and cha cha as well as its complex socio-political relationships both internally and externally! We perhaps have most admired its political resistance in the face of world powers with strong agenda. But these gifts to the world belies what is at the heart of modern Cuba – that is a people who have had to act and react to strong external pressures to maintain its quality of life guaranteed under their social contract. While many see Cuba as static, it has in fact been in a state of near constant flux.

Through travels over the island and using an anthropological and development studies lens, this program consider the history of Cuba, its post-revolutionary period, contemporary and future issues. It will help us to consider the nation not only as one in the process of developing but also its important role in helping to shape other nations as they meet the needs of their citizenry. For more information please see the Group Study website. Information and Selection meeting TBA (Fall 2017).