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  • Locations: Boaco, Nicaragua
  • Program Terms: Winter
  • Restrictions: CSULB applicants only
  • Dates / Deadlines
Program Description:
Program Dates: January 2 - 22, 2017

Program: ANTH: Archaeological Fieldwork (Pre-requisites: ANTH 405 or ANTH 448 or equivalent)

Approximate Travel Cost: $500 (includes accommodations and meals) This program is partially subsidized through Instructionally-Related Activities (IRA) funds.

Program Description: This archaeological fieldwork in Nicaragua is tied to two courses, ANTH 448 (Ancient Civilizations of Mexico and Central America) and ANTH 405 (Principles of Archaeology). Students accepted for the trip will be expected to have taken one or both of the classes or an equivalent. The goal of the program is to give students with interest in archaeology some exposure to archaeological fieldwork in Central America.

The project location is an archaeological site called La Arenera, which is within metropolitan Managua, the capital of Nicaragua. The site lies underneath a thick deposit of volcanic ash/sand erupted about 1500 years ago that is currently being quarried for construction material. Goals of the research are to determine whether the site was occupied at time of burial and to assess preservation state of the buried remains. Students participating in the project will conduct drone-based aerial reconnaissance along with high-precision GPS and total station to generate an accurate topographic map of the site. They will also carry out magnetic and ground-penetrating radar (GPR) surveys in order to understand the configuration of remains buried by the volcanic eruption.

Students accepted for this trip will have had classroom exposure to Central American archaeology and archaeological methods. This trip represents an opportunity to put some of their knowledge and skills to use in a real-world archaeological project. The project results will be used to plan future investigations at the site, including excavations. Students will contribute to presentations and reports of the work in various venues and to reporting obligations for the Nicaraguan antiquities authorities.

This is a CSULB short-term, faculty-led study abroad program.
Contact Professor Hector Neff for more information at

Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Winter 2019 11/02/2018 ** Rolling Admission TBA TBA

** Indicates rolling admission application process. Applicants will be immediately notified of acceptance into this program and be able to complete post-decision materials prior to the term's application deadline.