Due to concerns for the health and safety of IU students, X377/G549 Paleoanthropology and Geology Field School at Olduvai is cancelled for summer 2020.  We hope to be able to offer it again in summer 2021.

About the Field School

During this intensive field course students will learn the fundamentals of geological processes and develop skills in fossil and archaeological exploration through first-hand field experience. The course will emphasize field observations, data recording and interpretation with the goal of understanding physical and biological processes of site formation and human evolution. Students will have the opportunity to conduct field experiments such as measuring stratigraphic sections, stone knapping and bone taphonomy. Students will work closely with the instructors and prominent scientists currently doing research at the Olduvai site to develop and carry out independent research projects.


 

 

DETAILS

course

Dates: May 13–June 19, 2020. Deadline for applications is March 31, 2020.
This 6-week course fulfills the IU GenEd World Languages and Cultures International Experience requirement. Students will study the impressive fault escarpment that marks the western boundary of the East Africa Rift Zone as well as understand the implication of the continental rifting and associated volcanism to evolution of early humans in East Africa.

sites

Sites include archaeological sequences in Olduvai Gorge, Laetoli, Ngorongoro volcanic highlands and rift escarpments. Students will visit nearby paleoathropological sites at Laetoli (3.5 million years old hominin footprint site) and Peninj that provide an important contrast to those studied in the Olduvai sites.

field trips

Field instruction will also take students to Serengeti National Park where its diverse savanna ecosystem provides important modern analogs for understanding the Plio-Pleistocene evolution of African vertebrates (including hominins) as well as evolution of grass plains.

explore the field trips

APPLICATIONS + SCHOLARSHIPS