Field schools

Field work is an important part of the student experience. You’ll have opportunities to spend time in the field locally as well as internationally.

Anthropology and Archaeology in Oaxaca, Mexico (Block week W2020)

This intensive block program will take place in Oaxaca located in the southern highlands of Mexico. It will sample the archaeological, cultural and ecological diversity of this unique area. Oaxaca has a deep history of archaeological investigations into the past 10,000 years of human occupation in the region.  It is the site of some of the earliest experiments in plant domestication. Studies of the cultural ecology have exposed aspects of plant domestication which facilitated the evolution of social complexity in the region not previously possible. It also has enduring evidence of the impacts of post-colonial contact.

Today, despite modern pressure, Oaxaca remains home to numerous indigenous communities who still practice traditional lifeways, speak native languages, and dress in regional costume. This make it an ideal setting for holistic studies of indigenous cultures, past and present. The course content is designed to follow up on to the ARKY 341, 343, 345 sequence which surveyed the pre-Columbian cultures of Mesoamerica and their legacy in contemporary Mexico, but is also designed to be accessible to undergraduate students with a background interest in Latin American studies.

For more information, please visit the Group Study website. Don't delay, the information session for this course is on Sept. 18, 2019 (4:30 pm, location TBA). 


Anthropology and Archaeology in Oaxaca, Mexico

Belize Primatology Field School (Term TBA)

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 behaviour, ecology and evolution in an actual field situation.


Howler monkey

Cluny Fortified Village Archaeological Field School (Spring 2020)

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.

More information coming soon. 


Cluny site

Maya Archaeology and Ecology: Cultural Heritage Field Program (Spring 2020)

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 classes offered: ARKY 347, ANTH/ARKY 523, ANTH 400, ARKY 597, DEST 501.

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 website. Don't delay, first information session being held on Oct. 8, 2020 (4pm, ES 859).


Mayan archaeological site

Ghana: Development in situ (Spring 2020)

Join native Ghanaian and UCalgary professor, Dr. Rita Yembilah on a program that examines the legacy and consequences of colonialism in Ghana. Here you will explore the unique perspectives of this developing nation through the visits NGOs, development projects, government officials, the Tamale Teaching Hospital, the Paga Pikworo Slave Camp, and Elmina Castle. Students will receive credit for three courses: DEST 401 & 501, and ANTH 541. For more details, please visit the Group Study website. Don't delay, first information meeting on September 19, 2019 (4 pom, ES 702). 

Ghanaian castle