Project Description

In light of a changing COVID-19 landscape, including the rapid spread of more contagious Delta and Omicron variants, and in accordance with the recommendation of national medical experts, IFR policy requires that prior to traveling, all field school students must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 AND receive a booster shot, if eligible. If you intend to participate in an IFR program this summer, we strongly encourage you to schedule your vaccination appointment as soon as possible.

All IFR field school applicants should familiarize themselves with IFR COVID-19 Practices before beginning the enrollment process. Program logistics are subject to change as health and risk management experts provide new recommendations and best practices. Each field school syllabus includes specific information about COVID-19 as related to travel regulations and recommendations, accommodations, local protocols, face mask policy and managing COVID-19 cases or outbreaks.

You may want to refer to the following websites to stay informed of COVID-19 case numbers and regulations/policies for Turkey:


Turkey has evidence of one of the earliest transitions from hunting and gathering to sedentism in the world. Understanding the period in time immediately preceding and encompassing the first steps in this transition, the Epipalaeolithic period, is crucial; however, the Epipalaeolithic period in central Turkey is poorly understood. The Pınarbașı project investigates the only known Epipalaeolithic site in Anatolia. During previous excavations, our team uncovered exciting burials with elaborate grave goods, indicating a commitment to place that may represent a transition to more sedentary behaviours. Working alongside professional excavators and experts in Epipalaeolithic communities, students will learn a range of archaeological research techniques and methods and about the wider context of Anatolian archaeology.

The course will take place at the Epipalaeolithic site of Pınarbașı (c. 14000-11000 BCE), the only Epipalaeolithic site on the central Anatolian plateau and the predecessor of the famous Neolithic sites of Boncuklu and Çatalhöyük. The site is located on the edge of the Konya Plain in central Turkey, 65 km east of the major city of Konya, a famous Medieval centre where the ‘whirling dervish’ sect was founded by the Medieval philosopher Celaleddin Rumi. We will stay in Karaman, an important Medieval city located 50 km to the south of Pınarbașı. There are many medieval buildings of the Seljuk period to visit in Konya and Karaman, both booming cities. The field school also includes visits to other sites and museums in central Turkey including Çatalhöyük and the dramatic Neolithic site of Aşıklı, where there is evidence of repeated rebuilding of houses and an experimental village. Aşıklı is located about 3 hours east of Konya in Cappadocia, also famous for its underground cities and painted medieval churches. We will also visit a number of remote Byzantine and Hittite sites around the Konya plain.

Download Syllabus

Course Details

  • Course Dates: June 9 – July 10, 2022

  • Enrollment Status: Closed

  • Total Cost: $4,050

  • Course Type: Field Archaeology

  • Payment Deadline: April 15, 2022

  • Instructors: Prof. Douglas Baird

  • Online Orientation: May 1, 2022 at 9am PT/ 12 pm ET/ 5 pm BST/ 7 pm TRT

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


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.

Tuition Includes:

  • 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 a $25 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 $100 late fee will be added to all accounts not paid in full by the Tuition deadline.

Deposit: 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.

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. In the event that IFR must cancel a field school, all accepted students will be notified as soon as possible and will receive a refund of all tuition paid including the deposit fee. IFR offers students the opportunity to transfer to another field school, permitting that there are spots available and the program director approves the student to participate in their field school. Upon approval of the program director, IFR staff will make the arrangements to transfer the student’s application and payments.

Credit Card Processing Fee: A 3.5% 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: Please consider purchasing a travel interruption insurance policy that will cover your travel cost and the cost of the IFR program once you make a commitment to attend a field school.

The added risk of COVID-19  should be a “covered event” in your policy.
Please note that the cost of coverage varies, based on your age, the program duration and geographical location.
You may get help and advice from your insurance broker and we offer the links below to help you educate yourself on these insurance products.
Travel Insured International offers coverage for Trip Cancellation or Interruption for Any Reason (review coverage based on your state).
– Compare quotes from different companies offering Trip Cancelation insurance plans.


Students will spend 4.5 weeks at accommodations in Karaman. We will drive to the site each day. Subject to COVID-related circumstances, we will make site visits around central Turkey, including to Cappadocia and other local sites, on weekends. The main four weeks will be spent in the field conducting survey and excavation at Pınarbașı, interspersed with laboratory training.

Student accommodation will be in self-catered, rented apartments in the city of Karaman. Students will share bedrooms and a kitchen area. Each apartment has its own shower, toilet and laundry facilities. We will run a cleaning rota, employing latest guidelines pertaining to COVID-19. Some of these arrangements may be subject to change depending on the circumstances of COVID-19 in summer 2022.

All participants in a field school, students and staff, will wear masks while indoors (i.e. during lectures, during labs, in shared residential spaces, etc.).

Regular hand washing will be a part of the project’s daily schedule.

The catering arrangements will depend on the circumstances of COVID-19 in 2022: either 1) partial self-catering (breakfast and lunch) plus restaurant food (dinners), if there are no pandemic-related restrictions, or 2) purely self-catered meals. The mix of self-catering plus restaurant meals worked well during previous field seasons. Karaman restaurants are generally good quality and clean; we haven’t had any problems with food-related illness. Vegans, vegetarians and gluten-free diets can be accommodated. The daily diet in Turkey is heavily based on pasta, rice, legumes bread other vegetables, with some meat. The food is varied, nutritious, thoroughly Turkish, and of course, halal. All meals will be communal events. In the evening, there will be access to the amenities of a small Turkish city, including coffee and juice bars, COVID-19 permitting.

Travel Info

Due to ongoing uncertainties regarding the travel regulations related to COVID-19, IFR will assess the local conditions closer to the travel date (5–6 weeks prior to the program beginning) and will make Go/No Go decisions then. We urge you to participate in the mandatory orientation meeting when we will discuss the latest travel information and regulations. We also suggest you consider postponing the purchase of your airline ticket until after the program orientation.

In addition, Professor Baird suggests you wait to purchase airline tickets until issue of research visas is confirmed.


The closest city to the site with an airport is Konya. There is an international airport at Konya although most flights route through Istanbul. Flying to Konya is easiest and Professor Baird will meet IFR students at that airport. Alternatively, one can fly to Istanbul and travel by high-speed train (4 hours) from Istanbul to Konya and then by train to Karaman, although these trains book up quickly. Professor Baird will also meet people at the train station in Karaman, if required. You will be driven from 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.

Travel on weekends for leisure purposes may be restricted depending on COVID-19 circumstances. Trips relating to the field school program, for example to other archaeological sites, will be carefully managed in regard to local circumstances pertaining to the transmission and abundance of COVID 19.

Travel to the site will involve 2 vehicles, including a minibus that affords reasonable spacing of occupants. Students and staff will travel in pods in accordance with their accommodation arrangements. Masks will be worn in vehicles.


Please frequently consult the US Embassy in Turkey website for the most up-to-date travel restrictions/protocols. Below is a summary of current (as of December 2021) travel restrictions/protocols:

  • A PCR test is required for entry into Turkey for individuals over the age of 12 years old who are unable to show proof of vaccination.
  • Passengers arriving in Turkey will be required to complete an information form (Traveler Entry Form) and will be checked for symptoms. Anyone testing positive for COVID-19 or suspected of having COVID-19 will be transported to a hospital for examination or to a dormitory to self-isolate. If an individual on a particular aircraft is found to have COVID-19, the information forms completed upon arrival will be used to identify others have been in contact with them; those individuals will then be subject to 14-day isolation/quarantine.  If a student is required to quarantine, they will need to phone Professor Baird immediately (phone numbers will be provided provided).
  • Passengers who in the past 14 days have been in Afghanistan, Brazil, Nepal South Africa or Sri Lanka are subject to quarantine for up to 14 days, at their own expense, in a government hotel listed at
  • Effective November 8, 2021, all non-immigrant, non-U.S. citizen air travelers to the United States will be required to be fully vaccinated and to provide proof of vaccination status prior to boarding an airplane to the United States.
  • All air travelers, regardless of vaccination status or nationality, must show a negative results from a COVID-19 test performed one calendar day before the day of your flight to the U.S.


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.

Citizens of other countries are asked to check the embassy website page at their home country for specific visa requirements.


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