Excavation and survey at a multi-period sand-hills site on Ireland’s Atlantic coast
Achill Archaeological Field School, Achill Island, Co. Mayo, Ireland National University of Ireland, Galway Field Director: Dr Eve Campbell Academic Director: Mr Conor Newman firstname.lastname@example.org https://achill-fieldschool.com/ https://www.facebook.com/AchillFieldSchoolIreland/ Experience the magic of Ireland’s Atlantic coast and gain hands-on excavation experience at Ireland’s oldest archaeology field school on Achill Island, on Ireland’s spectacular Wild Atlantic Way. The Achill Archaeological Field School, founded in 1991, is a training school for students of archaeology and anthropology, and an accredited Field School of the National University of Ireland Galway. We provide archaeology courses for all levels, from beginner and undergraduate to our very popular trainee supervisor course. Our beginner and intermediate archaeology courses provide a solid grounding in archaeology theory and practice. Our accredited Archaeology Field School Courses are aimed at undergraduate and graduate archaeology and anthropology students. These include our two-, four-, six-, eight- and twelve-week accredited courses which qualify for up to 9 Semester Hour Credits from NUI Galway. These courses are also open to students and other participants who do not wish to enrol for academic credit. Caraun Point Our 2019 training excavation will be based at Caraun Point, a multi-period archaeological complex located on a sand-covered promontory on Achill Island’s north-east coast. The site is in a stunning location overlooking Blacksod Bay and the Inishkea Islands. 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 Mayo, 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 and middens. Students will also have a chance to participate in our public archaeology programme. Courses Summary
For more information contact us directly at: email@example.com https://achill-fieldschool.com/
Affiliation: National University of Ireland, Galway; The Irish Fieldschool of Prehistoric Archaeology
Project Directors: Dr Carleton Jones (Academic Director) & Dr Ros Ó Maoldúin (Field Director)
Project Description: Survey and excavation of a prehistoric barrow (burial mound) and ceremonial complex.
Period(s) of Occupation: Irish Bronze to Iron Age (2000 BC – 400 AD)
Elyse Mallonee of USA at work during the NUIG excavation which is ongoing at Parknabinna Wedge Tomb in the Burren. Photograph by John Kelly.
Our fieldschool aims to target and investigate periods of social and religious change in prehistoric Ireland. We have just completed a three-year campaign focused on Chalcolithic and Early Bronze Age megalithic tombs and are now focusing on Later Bronze Age to Iron Age burials.
During 2017, we conducted topographical and geophysical survey over and surrounding a large barrow (burial mound) and discovered a significant ceremonial complex. During 2018, we will be extending that survey and targeting the barrow and geophysical anomalies with excavation.
We are based in the Burren in the west of Ireland a landscape that has been the subject of research by our academic director since his PhD research, with Professor Colin Renfrew, in Cambridge during the 1990’s.
The local limestone geology is particularly beneficial to the preservation of bone and one of our primary objectives is to retrieve human remains. Along with the usual osteological analysis, our partners in Trinity College Dublin and Oxford University are carrying out ancient DNA and isotope analyses on our assemblage. This will help further our understanding of movement and interaction during the period, hopefully allowing us to answer ‘social questions’.
We also hope to recognise structure in the depositions and arrangement of these sites – patterns that will hopefully provide insight into the contemporary ritual practice and belief systems.
Participants on the excavation course will get experience of recording archaeology, both digitally and through more traditional methods. They are also likely to get an opportunity to excavate, or work with, human remains. They will gain experience using a total station, creating 3D models (Agisoft photoscan), digitising drawings (Arc/QGIS and Inkscape), and mapping the finds/sites (Arc/QGIS). In addition to on-site training during the excavation, the fieldschool organises a series of workshops and lectures/seminars, given by visiting specialists. Workshops include practical tutorials on human bone (ostearchaeologist: Dr Lynda Lynch), animal bone (zoo-osteoarchaeologist: Dr Fiona Beglane), QGIS (Dr Richard Clutterbuck) and artefact Illustration (Sara Nylund). The weekly evening lectures vary each year; we invite a mixture of established lecturers and recent PhD graduates from Irish Universities and Institutions to speak on Irish or European prehistory. This provides a good opportunity for students to make contacts at Irish universities in an informal setting.
Participants on the survey and tour course will visit a wide range of prehistoric sites in Ireland, including the Boyne valley, the Aran Islands and around the Burren. They will gain experience in the use of the total station, taking photographs for 3D modelling, processing 3D models (Agisoft photoscan) and geophysical survey (Magnetometer and Electrical resistivity). All travel and overnight accommodations on the tour are included in the fee.
Participants on the experimental archaeology course will get experience of working with materials which were used in the Chalcolithic and Bronze Age. Our course will be held in Craggaunowen heritage park, where we will have the use of a real castle and a reconstructed ringfort and crannog, to carry out our work. In 2018 we will be concentrating on later Bronze Age casting techniques (including lost-was technique) and will have Dr Billy Mag Fhloinn, one of Ireland’s most experienced experimental archaeologists leading the course.
Experience: The field school is suitable for both beginner and advanced students. It is particularly well suited to those interested in European prehistoric archaeology and/or the excavation of human remains.
Breana Ryan of and local woman during the NUIG excavation which is ongoing at Parknabinna Wedge Tomb in the Burren. Photograph by John Kelly.
Length of stay: Courses range from 1 to 14 weeks.
Minimum age: 18 (17 with prior agreement)
- 1 week (Experimental archaeology) €900
- 2 weeks (Tour and survey) €1750
- 4 weeks (Excavation) €3450
- 5 weeks (combined) €4200
- 6 weeks (combined) €4800
- 7 weeks (combined) €5350
- 14 weeks (entire summer) €8500
Number of field school places available: Max of 20 students on each course
Application deadlines: March 30th or until all the places are filled.
Project language: English
Project size: 20+ participants including excavators and specialists
Room and Board Arrangements: Participants will be staying at the Town square apartments in Lisdoonvarna.
These are modern and comfortable, two and three-bedroom homes, conveniently located in the centre of Lisdoonvarna town, next to shops, restaurants and amenities. Rooms will be twins or singles. The accommodation is self-catered; so, you are expected to cook for yourselves. We recommend budgeting about €100 per week for food and entertainment. This will allow you to eat out, in a restaurant, a couple of times per week.
Participants will use the tools and equipment available at the site. You should purchase and bring with you a 4” archaeology trowel (WHS, Spear & Jackson, or Marshalltown – you can find these easily online). You should also bring a waterproof jacket and over-bottoms with you. The weather in Ireland can be changeable, sunny one day and wet the next.
Insurance: The field school fee does not cover insurance. It is mandatory to arrange your own health insurance before your trip to Ireland. All EU citizens can use Irish medical services, just like Irish citizens, as long as they can provide evidence of their home-country health insurance with a card/certificate, etc.
Academic Credit: Academic credit and transcripts are included within the fee
Further information: please see our webpage www.prehistoricfieldschool.ie, our facebook page, or contact our field director firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sa Cudia Cremada Field School, Menorca (Balearic Islands, Spain)
This field school offers courses for international students who are interested in gaining first-hand experience in archaeological training. There are two types of courses.
The first one deals with the excavation and research of the Bronze and Iron Age site of Sa Cudia Cremada, which belongs to the Talayotic culture of the island. This culture only developed in Minorca and Majorca and its main traits were those of having a cyclopean construction technique, a set of complex funerary rituals and a unique material culture, amongst others.
The practical side of this course focuses on the excavation of the settlement’s sanctuary, whose excavation started last year. This type of building, known as “taula” enclosure, is unique in the world and cannot be found outside Menorca. Also, its monumentality and the practices documented in this type of spaces make them outstanding elements for the study of Mediterranean Prehistory. Also, part of the program is devoted to lab work, workshops and excursions to the most significant archaeological sites and museums on the island.
The second course focuses on laboratory work, documentation of finds and restoration. And, as in the other course, there are lectures, workshops and excursions scheduled.
Our aim is to carry out archaeological research in the site and offer quality archaeological training to university students in need of gaining practical experience in this field as well as professionals interested in digging in a Mediterranean protohistoric archaeological site.
You can visit our website to find more information about us. If you need further information about our field school, work or anything else, please do not hesitate to contact us via this e-mail.