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Archaeology & Anthropology Field Schools

Atlantic Ocean - Bermuda - Field School in Underwater Archaeology - 2015

Archaeology Field School Location and Dates

Application Deadline
Start Date 2015-07-20
End Date 2015-08-08

Archaeology Field School Location


Archaeology Field School Tuition and Credits

Sponsoring College/Institution

University of Rhode Island

Academic Credit

3 to 6

Archaeology Field School Tuition


Archaeology Field School Room and Board


Archaeology Field School Travel
Inclusive except for airfare to Bermuda
Additional Information on Tution/Room and Board/Travel Costs

Tuition includes academic credit, room, board, air fills, ground transportation, boats. All inclusive except for airfare to and from Bermuda

Archaeology Field School Description

The field school will be conducted from July 20 – Aug 8, 2015. Students will participate in each of three research modules over the course of the field school: archaeological survey and documentation of historic shipwrecks, archival research in the Bermuda National Archives, and laboratory training in the museum's conservation facility. Students will attend periodic evening lectures on such topics as archaeological methods, archaeological survey (magnetometer and visual survey), ship construction, site excavation and mapping, analysis of archaeological data, conservation of waterlogged artifacts. The National Museum of Bermuda will host the field school. Our focus in 2015 is to complete the excavation and documentation of a late 18th/early 19th century merchant vessel lost on the Bermuda reefs in 1837, as well as the preliminary investigation of a 17th century wreck associated with Bermuda’s early settlement. Course enrollment is limited to 12 students due to housing and boat limitations. Students will receive 3-6 undergraduate or graduate credits in history. The field school meets many of the fieldwork requirements for anthropology and archaeology majors at universities in the United States and beyond. There are no academic prerequisites, and prior archaeological experience or knowledge of Bermuda is not required, but all participants in the field school must obtain both a recreational Open Water scuba certification and an American Academy of Underwater Sciences (AAUS) Scientific Diver-in-Training certification prior to the beginning of the field school and must have their own diving equipment (tanks and weights will be provided). Any recognized recreational scuba certification (PADI, NAUI, SSI) will be acceptable. AAUS Scientific Diver-in-Training Certification can be arranged through the University of Rhode Island if a student’s home college or university is not affiliated with AAUS. Contact Dr. Allan or Dr. Mather (see below) to discuss arrangements for this training. For an application or additional information regarding application procedures, tuition, AAUS certification and travel, please log on to or contact Professor James M. Allan of the Saint Mary’s College Anthropology Department or Professor Roderick Mather of the University of Rhode Island History Department , who are the co-directors of the program.

Professor Allan can be reached at

Professor Mather can be reached at

Archaeology Field School Additional Information

Archaeology Field School Type


Time Period

17th, 18th and 19th centuries

Field School Setting/Conditions

Bermuda is an island about 20 miles long located 650 miles southeast of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina. The island was visited by Spanish mariners during the 16th century but was not settled until the 17th century, when English colonists started to migrate to the New World. For hundreds of years, navigators used the island as a final sighting before they headed out across the Atlantic. Today, the island’s economy is based on offshore banking and tourism, the latter being an industry enhanced by the warm clear waters and extensive reef system that surround the island.

How is the project area accessed each day

The museum will provide 20 ft. and 25 ft. dive boats for transportation to and from the dive sites and to act as the working dive platforms.

What is the daily schedule for the field school

Daily, 8-5 with occasional evening lectures and assignments. Occasional days off.

Number of years this Archaeology Field School has been in operation
Is there a professional certification for this field school


Directors and Instructors

Professors Rod Mather and James M. Allan of the University of Rhode Island History Department are the program directors. Dr. Allan and Dr. Mather have extensive experience in underwater archaeological field methods, remote sensing, archival research, and scientific diving.

Specialized skills you will have the opportunity to learn

Archaeological methods, archaeological survey, ship construction, site excavation and mapping, analysis of archaeological data, conservation of waterlogged artifacts.

On rain days will there be lab work?


Will there be additional organized activities?

Yes. Students will participate in Bermuda's National Holiday

Will there be additional organized activities?


Is travel restriced during free time?


Archaeology Field School Contact Information and Website

Field School Website:

Field School Contact Information

Dr. Roderick Mather Dept. of History University of Rhode Island 113 Washburn Hall Kingston, RI 02881 (401) 874-4093

Field School Contact E-mail:
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