Project Description


Turkey has evidence of one of the earliest transitions from hunting and gathering to sedentism in the world.  This project aims to investigate the origins of settled agricultural communities and the emergence of the world’s earliest monumental ritual buildings.. The site of Mendik is located near the modern city of Şanlıurfa and close to the famous World Heritage site of Göbeklitepe and seems to be a predecessor of that site. There are several other Neolithic sites in the vicinity like Göbeklitepe, now being excavated as part of large regional project to which the Mendik excavations are linked and which we will be able to visit. Şanlıurfa is itself a fascinating city with great museums and monuments to visit, as well as its own distinctive cuisine. The work at the site will include some of the following: geophysics, photogrammetry and excavation. Students will learn about these as well as finds processing and the work of the onsite specialists particularly in archaeobotany, zooarchaeology, lithic studies.

Download Provisional 2024 Syllabus
Course Details
Course Dates Sept. 1-Sept. 26, 2024
Course Type Field Archaeology
Instructors Prof. Douglas Baird
Credits* TBD semester (TBD quarter)
Apply By April 15
Fees Due By Summer 2 (May 15)
Program Fees  
Tuition $3,725
Transcript Fee* $300
Health & Evacuation Insurance $125
Room & Board $840
TOTAL: $4,990
Apply Now!

Applications accepted on a rolling basis until program fills or final deadline above. 


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).


This is a new IFR field school. No student testimonials are available at this time.

Payment & Student Fees

Application Fee: There is a $45 fee to submit an online application.

Deposit Payment: A nonrefundable $500 deposit is due within 3 weeks of program acceptance in order to secure your place. The remainder of your program fees are due by the deadline indicated under “Course Details”.

*Transcript Fee & Academic Credit Opt Out: If you wish to participate in an IFR field school without earning academic credits, you will not be charged a transcript fee.

For more information about payment, fees, and policies, please see details under our Payment & Finances and Withdrawal and Cancellation Policy pages.


Our accommodation will be in a new dig house near the site. Students will share bedrooms. Laundry facilities are available.

The catering arrangements will involve prepared breakfast and dinner and a picnic lunch. Vegans, vegetarians and gluten-free diets are catered for. The food is varied and nutritious but it will be thoroughly Turkish, which might not appeal to fussy eaters. It is, of course, halal.

Travel Info

Natural disasters, political changes, weather conditions and various other factors may force the cancellation or alteration of a field school. IFR recommends students only purchase airline tickets that are fully refundable and consider travel insurance in case a program or travel plans must change for any reason.

General information for this program is below, but keep in mind we will discuss any updated travel information and regulations during the required program orientation, which could affect travel plans.

The closest city to the site with an airport is Şanlıurfa GAP airport; most flights route through Istanbul. Professor Baird will meet IFR students at that airport. Alternatively, one can fly to Istanbul and travel by bus but that is a long trip. Professor Baird will also meet people at the bust station, if required. You will be driven from the collection point to the accommodation in the dig vehicle.

If you missed your connection or your flight is delayed, please call, text or email the field school director immediately. A local emergency mobile phone number will be provided to all enrolled students.

All personnel 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 sent to students by Project Director – and all documents will be submitted as a group for approval to relevant Turkish authorities. Just before the program students will collect research visas from relevant local consulates, this will involve making suitable arrangements with those consulates for visa collection under guidance from Prof. Baird.

The Turkish government require that your passport should be valid for at least 6 months from the date you enter Turkey and that there is a full blank page for the entry and exit stamps.

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 (877-839-4374) or email ( if you have questions about the safety of any particular program.