US (CA) - Forensics


For nearly 100 years (1908-2008), unidentified human remains – known as John & Jane Doe’s – in San Bernardino County (California) have been buried in a three acre plot of land located in one of the county’s many cemeteries.  Many of these individuals were the victims of foul play, others were simply forgotten by society.  All, however, have one thing in common: forensic science was unable to identify who they were using the methods available at the time.  In 2001, the California Senate passed Bill 297, which asked counties such as San Bernardino to apply modern DNA analysis to these decades-old cold cases.  This field school will conduct forensic work to assist in such identification.  Students will excavate burials in forensic contexts, perform preliminary analysis of the remains and help collect remains to send for further laboratory analysis before documenting and reburying the remains. 

United States Forensics Archaeology Field School - Institute for Field Research Field Schools US (CA) - Forensics18-352014-06-20
Course Dates: Jul 13 - Aug 10 2014
Enrollment Status: CLOSED
Total Cost: $ 5,150 
Course Type: Field Archaeology
Instructors: Dr. Craig Goralski, Dr. Alexis Gray



Craig Goralski

Dr. Craig Goralski

Dr. Goralski ( is an Associate Professor of Anthropology at Cypress College.  For more information, click here
Alexis Gray

Dr. Alexis Gray

Dr. Gray is an Associate Professor of Anthropology at Norco College and a Forensic Anthropologist at the San Bernardino Sheriff Department – Coroner Division. 


"I have had the privilege of working with Dr. Gray as a junior colleague on the cemetery project from its very inception. Dr. Gray’s dedication to the Forensic Anthro Unit and the cemetery project has been steadfast to say the least. She not only provided the team with the knowledge essential to properly conduct an exhumation in the field, but she also served as a guiding light that inspired all whom were involved in this groundbreaking endeavor. Dr. Gray was diligent in maintaining standards throughout the entire length of the project. A major emphasis was placed on OSHA standards and proper exhumation techniques for a forensic case. Additionally, Dr. Gray ensured that each and every person on scene displayed the upmost respect for our operation and the unidentified for which we were advocating.  Her matchless teaching philosophy allowed for her volunteers and students to take an active role in the project, which provided an opportunity for the development strong leadership skills. Those lucky enough to find themselves a part of this revolutionary effort were empowered and inspired by the commendable example set by Dr. Gray. Our work became a sort of seva or community service due to the inspired guidance provided by Dr. Gray. The passion she feels for her work is undoubtedly contagious and we all were compelled to return regularly to toil in the heat and dirt in order to finish what we had begun.  I couldn’t imagine a better field school opportunity for emerging anthropologists than our humble field [school] in San Bernardino. The lessons the students learn there will stretch far beyond anything that could be gathered from textbooks and lectures. These students will not only have the opportunity to learn techniques relevant to [the] discipline, but most importantly they will take from it life lessons that can only be acquired through providing such an irreplaceable service to their fellow man."

-Amanda Clark, Cal State San Bernardino (2006)




Student Fees

Early Enrollment Begins November 15 - Full payment must be received by April 1  
(Full Payment = Deposit + Tuition)
 Payment by Cashier or Personal Check Payment by Credit Card/Debit Card
Deposit:500 USD Deposit: 510 USD 
Tuition: 4,650 USD Tuition: 4,740 USD 

Late Enrollment Begins April 2 - Full payment must be received 10 days prior to course start date
(Full Payment = Deposit + Tuition)
 Payment by Cashier or Personal Check Payment by Credit Card/Debit Card
Deposit:500 USD Deposit: 510 USD 
Tuition: 4,750 USD Tuition: 4,840 USD 


Students will be provided with rooms in residence halls on campus at California State University, San Bernardino (CSUSB). Every 4 bedroom apartment comes complete with a full kitchen making it easy and convenient to cook meals. In most units, bathrooms are shared by two occupants. Each apartment comes fully furnished with appliances (refrigerator, oven range, and garbage disposal), twin bed, desk and chair, dresser, and closet.  Rooms are double occupancy; single rooms may be requested at an additional cost to the student. Residence halls have wireless internet.  
MEALS:  Students will enjoy a meal plan for the duration of the field school, which will include breakfast, lunch and dinner. When in the field, breakfasts and lunches will be ‘grab and go’ packages for travel. When on campus, meals can be eaten in the dining halls on campus.  Some food restrictions may be accommodated.  Check with instructors regarding any special diet you may have or if you would like to cook your own meals for the duration of the field school.