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UNC Archaeology Field School in Peru
The 21st Annual UNC Multidisciplinary Field School in South American Archaeology
is a 5-week field school in archaeology on the north coast of Peru. Through excavation, analysis of artifacts, and visits to archaeological sites, students learn how to conduct archaeological research as well as learn about prehistory and history Peru.
The directors of the field school are Brian Billman (UNC-CH) and Gabriel Prieto (Universidad Nacional de Trujillo). Collectively they have 40 field seasons of archaeology experience in Peru. Brian Billman is an Associate Professor in Anthropology at UNC-CH. He has been doing research in Peru since 1985 and has been directing the UNC field school in Peru since 1999. Gabriel Prieto has a PhD in archaeology from Yale and was born and raised in Huanchaco. He is the director of a long-term archaeological project investigating the prehistory and history of Huanchaco, Peru and the surrounding area.
No prerequisites -- Spanish not required -- Non-majors accepted.
The field school is located in beautiful Huanchaco, a fishing village and beach resort on the north coast of Peru. Huanchaco is just a few miles from Trujillo, Peru’s third largest city. Trujillo is in the Moche Valley, 500 km (300 miles) north of Lima on the PanAmerican Highway. The Trujillo airport has daily flights from Lima. Buses from Lima to Trujillo are cheap and comfortable, but slow. Typically, it’s a nine-hour ride from central Lima to Trujillo.
Students will enroll in Anthropology (ANTH) 453, Field School in South American Archeology
. This course carries 6 UNC credit hours and will be graded credit. ANTH 453 fulfills the following General Education requirements: (1) Historical Analysis, (2) The World Before 1750, and (3) Experiential Education.
This course provides students with training and experience in archaeological excavation and artifact analysis. In addition, students learn about the history and prehistory of Peru. The program begins with workshops on the culture history of the region, the research project, and research methods, after which students work in the field and lab. Students will work at Jose Olaya, which is located on the grounds of a high school in Huanchaco. The site was a fishing village, dating to BC 200 to AD 200. It has well-preserved households, tombs, and trash middens, containing pottery, basketry, textiles, metal objects, and stone, bone, and wood tools. Organic remains, such as desicated plant remains, are abundant and exceptionally well preserved because of the dry climate. Through excavation, lab analysis, readings, and discussions, students learn how archaeologists study social status, class, and economic relationships.
The program also includes educational tours of world-famous archaeological sites on Saturdays (such as Chan Chan, Huaca de la Luna, and other sites) and ends with a 3-day tour of the north coast of Peru. Saturday afternoon and Sunday are free time for students.
Courses in this program are UNC Graded Credit.
UNC Graded Credit Programs
(often taught by UNC Faculty): No action required
- These courses automatically show up on your Tar Heel Tracker and UNC Transcript.
- You will receive a letter grade for those courses, and this does affect your GPA.
The field school is located in beautiful Huanchaco, a fishing village and beach resort on the north coast of Peru. Huanchaco is located just a few miles from Trujillo, Peru’s third largest city. Students stay in double or triple rooms with private baths at a hostel two blocks from the beach in Huanchaco. The hostel has free wifi and hot showers (availability of hot water is limited). The program provides three meals a day, six days a week for students and faculty. Meals are prepared and served at the hostel by local women. Meals are typical Peruvian cooking, made from fresh local ingredients, including local seafood. Breakfast consists of coffee, tea, juice, fresh bread with jam and butter, fruit, and yogurt. Eggs and bacon are served with breakfast several days a week. Lunches and dinners consist of salad or soup and a main course with rice. Several days a week the cooks make special desserts. All meals are served with fresh fruit juice. Vegetarian meals are available. Vegan meals are not available.
Review the Budget Sheet posted above for detailed information on costs and fees. Costs vary per term and are subject to change.
Tuition and fees for the program are based on the cost of operating the program abroad and are subject to change due to exchange rate fluctuation. Tuition and fees will be charged to the participant’s UNC student account. Review the Budget Sheet for additional Cashier Billed Expenses and Out-of-Pocket Costs. The Study Abroad Office strongly encourages students to budget carefully for their time abroad.
Getting Started: Funding Study Abroad
Complete the required UNC application by clicking “Apply Now” at the top of the page. If you have not done so already, create a profile to start your application.
For additional program information, please contact Prof. Brian Billman - firstname.lastname@example.org
For information on requesting ARS accommodations (academic, health, and mobility concerns) for a study abroad program, contact the Advisor for Access