This listing expired on March 15, 2013. Please contact email@example.com for any updated information.
Location: Chan Chich, Belize
Season Dates: May 20, 2013 - June 19, 2013
Session Dates: Regular Session: May 20–June 14, 2013; Extended Session: May 20–June 19, 2013.
Application Deadline: March 15, 2013
Affiliation: Texas Tech University
Project Director: Dr. Brett A. Houk, Texas Tech University
In 2013, the Field School in Maya Archaeology will be held at Chan Chich, Belize. Dr. Brett A. Houk previously conducted research at the site as the director of the Chan Chich Archaeological Project (CCAP) between 1996 and 2001, and the 2012 season marked a renewal of the CCAP after a hiatus of more than a decade. The CCAP represents a truly special opportunity for college students to participate in a significant research project, while receiving instruction in archaeological field and laboratory methods. Rather than a typical study abroad trip, the Field School in Maya Archaeology and the CCAP represent Research Abroad! For the first time, the Field School will offer students the option of extended their stay to learn more about lab work (and earn 3 hours additional credit). Students will have the opportunity to learn how to excavate, how to draw profiles and plan maps, how to record archaeological data, how to process and analyze artifacts in the lab, and how to survey for previously unrecorded archaeological sites. The field school is limited to 16 students.
Students who register for the extended session will get an intensive, hands-on exposure to lab work as the learn how to process and analyze the artifacts collected during the summer. The extended session will include additional lectures and readings along with training on the CCAP's relational database.
About Chan Chich
Chan Chich is tucked away in the jungles of northwestern Belize and is home to Chan Chich Lodge, a beautiful jungle lodge built in the main plaza of the site. Belize is an English speaking country with a stable government. It is easily reached from Texas on flights going through Dallas and Houston.
The archaeological site of Chan Chich is a medium-sized Maya city in northwestern Belize, very near the border with Guatemala. The area was first settled as a small village during the Middle Preclassic period (1000 to 250 BC) and occupied until the Terminal Classic period, ca. AD 850). Most of the visible architecture dates to the Late Classic period (AD 600–850). In the late 1980s, Gallon Jug Ranch was established on 130,000 acres of jungle, including the site of Chan Chich. Chan Chich Lodge was built in the Main Plaza at the site shortly after that. While some may see that as a negative impact to the ruins, the construction of the lodge and the return of legitimate economic activity to the area put an end to the illegal looting that had been going on at Chan Chich and the nearby archaeological sites for several years.
2013 Research Plans
Preliminary plans for the 2013 call for students to work at two areas at Chan Chich and to conduct survey on transects located about 30 minutes away on Gallon Jug Ranch. Excavations will be conducted in the Upper Plaza for the second straight season. The Upper Plaza investigations will target some of the earliest architecture at the site; Late Preclassic (250 BC to AD 250) floors and features are located beneath the Late Classic (AD 850) plaza surface. At Structure A-5, we will conduct a high-risk, high-reward archaeo-geophysical survey of the mound using “drones” and ground penetrating radar in an attempt to map the buried architecture. We will then test the results of our survey with excavations. Graduate students under the supervision of Dr. Houk will oversee excavations. Another graduate student will lead a survey team to walk previously cut seismic survey transects on the Gallon Jug property. This is a certainty previously unrecorded ruins hidden in the forest!
Period(s) of Occupation: Preclassic and Classic Period Maya
Project Size: 1-24 participants
Minimum Length of Stay for Volunteers: 26 days/25 nights
Minimum Age: 18
Experience Required: 1 year of college
Room and Board Arrangements
Students will be housed in cabanas normally used by group leaders. The thatch-roofed cabanas will be fitted with bunk beds, and they have 24-hour electricity, ceiling fans, and private bathrooms with hot water. The lodge now has wireless internet in the restaurant and bar, cell phone coverage, and a screened-in swimming pool with hot tub.
Meals will be served in the lodge's restaurant, and the Looter's Trench, the lodge's bar, will double as our meeting place and lecture hall. Occasionally, lectures will be held in the pool.
Cost: $2,750 ($3,000 total for extended session)
Name of institution offering credit: Texas Tech University
Number of credits offered: 6-9
Brett A. Houk
Texas Tech University, Box 41012
Lubbock, TX 79409
Phone: 806-742-2401 x234