Project Description

Overview

The Boncuklu field school investigates a pivotal transition in human history: the shift from a hunter-gatherer society to a farming civilization. The site dates to c. 8500 BCE, the earliest Neolithic village in central Anatolia and the predecessor of the famous Neolithic site of Çatalhöyük. Located in the Konya Plain in central Turkey, Boncuklu lies 40 kms east of the major city of Konya, a famous Medieval centre where the ‘whirling dervish’ sect was founded by the Medieval philosopher, Celaleddin Rumi. Students in the Boncuklu field school will work alongside expert archaeologists, learning and applying field research methods to expose the remains that tell the tales of the reality of life in the earliest farming settlements. The full gamut of archaeological field methods will be taught in this program: survey, excavation, laboratory analysis, artifact cataloging, and conservation. Students will also engage in the intellectual challenges presented by archaeological research, participating in research design, interpreting data, and the continual readjustment of hypotheses and field strategies with regard to information recovered in the field. The deep immersion in the site is complimented by an incredible range of regional field trips to other sites and museums including Çatalhöyük, the Hittite capital Hatussas, the Anatolian Civilizations Museum in Ankara and the dramatic Neolithic site of Aşıklı. Program participants can expect to walk away from this field school secure in their understanding of applied archaeological field research methods and deep understanding of the cultural landscape of Central Anatolia, past and present.  For the project website, go here.

2021 Syllabus Coming Soon

Course Details

  • Course Dates: July 15-August 14, 2021

  • Enrollment Status: OPEN

  • Total Cost: $4,365

  • Course Type: Field Archaeology

  • Payment Deadline: April 2, 2021

  • Instructors: Prof. Douglas Baird, Dr. Andrew Fairbairn

  • Online Orientation: TBA

  • Academic Credit: 8 Semester Credit Units (equivalent to 12 Quarter Units)

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Instructors

The directors welcome emails and inquiries about the research elements of this project. More general information (tuition, health insurance, and payment schedule) can be found under the ‘Students’ tab above. Any further questions may be addressed to IFR staff. Additional details about research, course schedule, travel, accommodation, and safety can be found on the syllabus. Contacting the directors or the IFR office is encouraged and appreciated. It may help you determine if this field school is a good fit for you.

Prof. Douglas Baird
Prof. Douglas Baird
Prof. Baird is a Professor at the School of Archaeology, Classics and Egyptology at the University of Liverpool (UK).
Dr. Andrew Fairbairn
Dr. Andrew Fairbairn
Dr. Fairbairn is Head of Discipline – Archaeology and Senior Lecturer & Associate Professor at the School of Social Science, University of Queensland (Australia).

Testimonials

I undertook The Boncuklu Field Work opportunity as an undergraduate student. In my opinion it is a must for any student wanting to become the best Archaeologist they can be. I experienced a different culture, met aspiring and established archaeologists and I was given the chance to work on a site of great archaeological value. The opportunity to go on intensive field work is very limited for undergraduates so this opportunity should not be passed up. Even if this is not your chosen area of study, it is important to get an understanding of the different types of sites you may encounter in your future undertakings. All in all, the experience was amazing, unforgettable and unique. It reaffirmed my belief that Archaeology is not really a job, but a lifestyle.

Brendan Richardson, University of Queensland

The Boncuklu experience was a fantastic opportunity to further my archaeological experience, as well as to fully immerse myself in a culture quite apart from what one is used to in Britain. Prior to the excavation I took the opportunity to explore Turkey, travelling as far as Lake Van in Eastern Turkey, and visiting sites we had been introduced to in lectures, notably Göbekli Tepe. The dig itself provided a fantastic opportunity to work, with an awesome team of students and top academics, for up to two months. I could truly immerse myself in the work I was undertaking, and try my hand at all aspects of the work (excavation, find processing, flotation, and survey), while exploring areas of the country such as Cappadocia, Antalya, and Eğridir in my time off. The opportunity also gave me a further experience in finds processing from a more specialised view point with personal instruction at a one to one level from Dr. Douglas Baird. This was a truly memorable experience, one I hope to repeat in the future, which I shall treasure forever, having met amazing people from across the world and explored a beautiful and welcoming country. Thanks!

Seth Price, University of Liverpool

Tuition Includes:

$4,365
  • Cost of Instruction
  • Cost of Academic Credit Units
  • Room & Board
  • All local transportation
  • Health & Evacuation Insurance

Student Fees

This program requires an online application — there is no fee to submit an application. Once admitted, a payment of the nonrefundable deposit fee is required to secure a place in the program(s). The Tuition balance (total program cost minus the deposit fee) must be paid prior to the Tuition deadline as listed above under “Course Details.” A $200 late fee will be added to all accounts not paid in full by the Tuition deadline.

Early Decision Enrollment (Nov 1, 2019 through Jan 10, 2020): A reduced, nonrefundable $300 deposit fee is required to secure a seat in the program. This deposit is part of the total Tuition and NOT in addition to it.

Regular Enrollment (Jan 11, 2020 through payment deadline): A nonrefundable $500 deposit fee is required to secure a seat in the program. This deposit is part of the total Tuition and NOT in addition to it.

Late Enrollment (payment deadline forward): A nonrefundable $600 deposit fee is required to secure a seat in the program. In addition, a $200 late fee  will be added to all accounts not paid in full by the Tuition payment deadline.

Withdrawal & Cancellation Policy: If you paid the deposit fee but did not cancel your participation by the Tuition payment deadline, you are legally responsible for the full Tuition regardless of attendance at any IFR program. Please carefully read our Withdrawal & Cancellation Policy for further information.

Credit Card Processing Fee: A 2.5% processing fee is automatically incurred for all credit/debit card/online payments.

Academic Credit Opt Out: Students who wish to participate in an IFR field school without earning academic credit units may do so and receive the following discounts: $300 off a full program (4 or more weeks in length) or $200 off a short program (2-3 weeks in length).

Trip Cancellation Insurance: The IFR does not provide trip cancellation insurance. Read this Wall Street Journal article about travel insurance — it may help in making a decision whether such insurance is for you. If you do wish to purchase such insurance, Insure My Trip or Travel Guard are two possible resources you may wish to explore.

Accommodations

Students will spend 4.5 weeks at the Boncuklu Project excavation centre. The first days there will involve lectures. There are weekend site visits around central Turkey including Cappadocia and local sites. The main four weeks will be spent in the field in survey and excavation at Boncuklu with laboratory training as well. The dig house has good communal facilities with kitchen, several showers and toilets, washing machine, and laboratories. There is outdoor covered dining and social space. Field school students will be housed in shared dorm rooms on bunk beds. There is also the option of large well insulated project tents that offer more space.

All meals will be communal events and will provide plenty of nutritious but basic food in the tradition of local cuisine. The daily diet in Turkey is heavily based on pasta, rice, legumes bread other vegetables, with some meat. Vegetarians/Vegans are catered for.

Note: our website boncuklu.org gives a flavor of life for the team at the site, you are encouraged to visit the site.

Turkey Boncuklu

Travel Info

PLEASE NOTE: DO NOT BOOK FLIGHTS UNTIL INSTRUCTED BY THE FIELD SCHOOL DIRECTORS. MINOR CHANGES TO THE MEETING POINT AND STARTING DATE (BY A DAY OR TWO) MAY BECOME NECESSARY IN THE LIGHT OF ARRANGEMENTS WITH THE TURKISH AUTHORITIES WHO ISSUE THE OFFICIAL PERMIT FOR THE EXCAVATION.

We suggest you hold purchasing your airline ticket until six (6) weeks prior to departure date. Natural disasters, political changes, weather conditions and a range of other factors may require the cancelation of a field school. The IFR typically takes a close look at local conditions 6-7 weeks prior to program beginning and make Go/No Go decisions by then. Such time frame still allows the purchase deeply discounted airline tickets while protecting students from potential loss if airline ticket costs if we decide to cancel a program.

Students are responsible for making your own travel arrangements, once the timing of permit issue by the Turkish authorities is confirmed. Students will fly in and out of Konya (KYA) and will be met at Konya airport on arrival. If you flight is delayed or you missed your connection, please call, text or email the project director immediately. A local cell phone number will be provided to enrolled students.

Students will arrive on Thursday, July 16. This field school ends on the afternoon of Friday, August 14. Students should prepare for onward travel or return home on Saturday, August 15.

VISA REQUIREMENTS

All personal engaged in archaeological research in Turkey must be cleared by the authorities. Enrolled students will receive a special visa to attend the field school. All accepted students will be asked to complete official forms – those will be send to students by Project Directors – and all documents will be submitted as a group for approval to relevant Turkish authorities.

Student Safety

The IFR primary concern is with education. Traveling and conducting field research involve risk. Students interested in participating in IFR programs must weigh whether the potential risk is worth the value of education provided. While risk is inherent in everything we do, we do not take risk lightly. The IFR engages in intensive review of each field school location prior to approval. Once a program is accepted, the IFR reviews each program annually to make sure it complies with all our standards and policies, including student safety.

Students attending IFR international programs are covered by a comprehensive Health Insurance policy that includes physical illness or injury, mental or chronic conditions. No deductible and 100% of costs are covered up to $250,000. In addition, we provide Political and Natural Disaster Evacuation policy, which allow us to remove students from field school location if local conditions change. Our field school directors are scholars that know field school locations and cultures well and are plugged in into local communities and state institution structures.

Students attending IFR domestic programs (within the US) must have their own health insurance and provide proof upon enrollment. IFR field school directors are familiar with local authorities and if in need of evacuation, local emergency services and/or law enforcement will be notified and activated.

The IFR has strong, explicit and robust policy towards discrimination and harassment in the field. If students feel they cannot discuss personal safety issues with field school staff, the IFR operates an emergency hotline where students may contact IFR personnel directly.

Call us at 877-839-4374 or email us at info@ifrglobal.org if you have questions about the safety of any particular program.