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Anthropology Field and Laboratory Opportunities

ISU's Anthropology Department offers many opportunities for students at all levels to gain hands-on, specialized experience in anthropological and archaeological field and laboratory methods. Some of these opportunities are held abroad, in locations like the Aleutian Islands of Alaska, the Sacred Valley in Peru, and the Polynesia Pacific. Other opportunities take place in the mountains and deserts of eastern Idaho, rural health cooperatives and in the anthropology laboratories on the ISU campus.

Click on the links below to get more information about the current field opportunities in Anthropology at ISU:


ISU Biological Anthropology Laboratory

Facilities, Equipment, and Services (2020)

The biological anthropology laboratories are housed Graveley Hall. The lab complex consists of three research labs for bioarchaeology, dental anthropology and hard tissue histology, forensic anthropology, and maceration and processing. The research in these labs is also performed with additional resources available at Center for Archaeology, Materials, and Applied Spectroscopy (CAMAS), the Radiographic Science program, the Global Information System (GIS) labs, the willed-body donation program, and Idaho Museum of Natural History (IMNH), all on the ISU-Pocatello campus. Additionally, the bioanthropology teaching lab is also located in the same location and is the site of many bioanthropology courses. Each lab maintains resources that are available to faculty, graduate and undergraduate students, and collaborative scholars.

Bio Anth Skulls

Bioanthropology Teaching Lab (click for website) (Graveley Hall, B12)
This lab space is home to many biological anthropology courses including Biological Anthropology Laboratory sections, Osteology, Bioarchaeology, and Forensic Anthropology courses. The space features eight laboratory tables for four students each, a sink with running tap, a large white board, and foot and overhead cabinets holding a diverse skeletal and cast collection.
This facility includes:
• Several complete real (medical) human skeletons and isolated human skeletal elements
• Models of human skeletal elements (including didactic hands and feet, exploded skull, disarticulated cast of a human infant)
• Comparative casts for aging skeletons such as Suchey-Brooks and Todd pubic symphysis casts, ASUDAS dental casts, and casts of pathological and traumatic injuries)
• Growing comparative animal skeleton collection

Laboratory Internships in Archaeological Science

2022 Maya Archaeology Field School

Guatemala 3

Student Maya Research Opportunity in the Mirador Basin, Guatemala,  2022 Idaho State University / FARES Foundation

The Idaho State University/ Guatemala Archaeological and Ecological Research Program is located in the remote Mirador Basin in the northern department of Peten.  The research encompasses one of the most exciting research projects on the ancient Maya, and is focusing on the origins, cultural dynamics, and collapse of Preclassic Maya civilization.  Under the direction of Dr. Richard Hansen, you will have the opportunity for original research and exploration in the largest and earliest ancient Maya cities with teams of scholars from a variety of disciplines.

If you are interested in the field school and would like more information about tuition, costs, room/board, and other expectations, please download this file:

2022 Maya Field School Flyer and visit here:


Guatemala 1

For this year's syllabus:

2022 Maya Field School Syllabus


If you would like to apply for this field school please download the application here:

2022 Maya Field School Application


If you are attending this year's field school please download the following files:

2022 Maya Field School Foreign Travel Assumption of Risk and Liability Waiver

2022 Maya Field School ISU FARES Foundation

2022 Maya Field School General Equipment

2022 Maya Field School Reading List


The 2022 Liability Waiver and Application must be returned to Dr. Hansen or the Department of Anthropology before May 1, 2022 at 5PM.

Please see contact info below if you have any other questions about this year's field school.


Email: Christine Cento-Ownby, Administrative Assistant

and Dr. Richard Hansen,

2019 Archaeology Field School: Olsen Mammoth Excavation

The 2019 Field School continues excavation on a multi-year project recovering a Columbian Mammoth (Mammuthus columbi) from private property just outside of Kimberly, Idaho. The mammoth has been radiocarbon dated to between 15,500 and 14,500 years old. We are hoping to find evidence of human interaction with this species whether it was hunted, scavenged, or injured. 

If you are interested in the field school and would like more information about tuition, costs, room/board, and other expectations, please download this file:

2019 Archaeology Field School Information Session

For this year's syllabus:

Speer - Archaeology Field School - ANT 4486 - Syllabus


If you plan on attending this year's field school please download the following files:

2019 Student Manual

2019 Excavation and Lab Procedures

2019 Liability Waiver - Olsen Mammoth

Field Excavation Manual


The 2019 Liability Waiver and page 9 of the 2019 Student Manual must be returned to Dr. Speer before May 1, 2019 at 5PM.

Please contact Dr. Charles Speer at if you have any other questions about next year's field school.

This is an introduction to the Idaho State University Archaeology Field School.

2016 Archaeology Field School: Paleoindian Archaeology in the Sweet Ola Valley

This video shows the area we are exploring for Paleoindian sites from 9,000 to 18,000 years ago in the Sweet-Ola Valley. In the first slides you'll see details of the area we investigated on the Upper Squaw Creek. You'll also see artifacts collected by the landowners of the various sites. We investigated 720 acres of private property adjacent to Boise National Forest. The preliminary results of our investigation are promising. The slides and videos show students from the 2016 field school excavating, sifting dirt, and mapping artifacts with our robotic Total Station survey instrument. There are several time lapse videos, GoPro handheld footage, and iPhone video capture. The last slides show the Fennel family that has been very helpful in procuring permissions to excavate and survey in the Sweet-Ola Valley. Special thanks to them!