This listing expired on July 5, 2013. Please contact for any updated information.
Exploring the Prehistoric Indiana Dunes

Location: Chesterton, Indiana, United States

June 17, 2013 to July 5, 2013

Application Deadline: 
Friday, June 14, 2013

Flyer: PDF icon nd_field_school_2013b.pdf

Program Type

Field school

RPA certified



University of Notre Dame and the Midwest Archaeological Center, National Park Service

Project Director:

Mark Schurr, University of Notre Dame

Project Description

The Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore in northwestern Indiana (60 miles east of Chicago) is a beautiful natural landscape.  About 1,500 years ago, during the Late Woodland period, prehistoric people camped in the dunes and left behind artifacts such as the prehistoric pottery sherds shown here.  Who were they and what were they doing there?  This year’s Notre Dame Archaeology Field School will attempt to answer those questions.  We will attempt to learn who they were and what they were doing by finding and studying the artifacts they left behind.

More information about the prehistory and history of the Dunes is available at

The University of Notre Dame (ND) will conduct a field school at the site in 2013 in cooperation with the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore and the Midwest Archaeological Center (MWAC) of the National Park Service. Under the direction of Prof. Mark Schurr (ND), students in the field school will accurately map sites, conduct several different types of geophysical surveys to map sub-surface archaeological deposits, and conduct excavations to investigate buried deposits. Students will also learn about the prehistory and early history of the Great Lakes, how to document and report archaeological projects and artifacts using digital tools, how to engage the public in archaeological projects, and what types of careers are available for archaeologists working in academic, governmental, and private settings.


You will learn about:

  • Site mapping and documentation

  • Geophysical survey and remote sensing

  • The basics of field archaeology

  • The archaeology of eastern North America and the Great Lakes

  • Prehistoric and historic American culture

  • Communicating the results of your research

  • Careers in archaeology

  • Public Archaeology

Period(s) of Occupation: Prehistoric Native American (Late Woodland Period

Prehistoric Archaeology, Geophysical Surveys, Public Archaeology, Digital Archaeology

Project size: 
1-24 participants

Minimum Length of Stay for Volunteers: Three weeks for credit, no minimum for volunteers

Minimum age: 
18 for credit, contact directors regarding younger volunteers

Experience required: 

Room and Board Arrangements

Students can make their own housing arrangments.  University of Notre Dame students can stay in campus dorms.


Academic Credit

Name of institution offering credit: 
University of Notre Dame
Number of credits offered 3


Contact Information
Mark Schurr
100 O'Shaughnessy Hall
Notre Dame
United States