Zooarchaeology in Theory & Practice at the Los Angeles Natural History Museum

COVID-19 NOTICE: Please be sure to reach out to the project contact to find out the status of their upcoming season. Many projects have altered fieldwork plans and the information below may not reflect that.

This listing expired on August 1, 2022. Please contact for any updated information.

Location: Exposition / Watt, Los Angeles, CA 90037, USA

Season: July 11, 2022 to August 5, 2022

Application Deadline: April 15, 2022

Deadline Type: Rolling


Program Type:
Field School

RPA Certified:

Los Angeles Natural History Museum & Center for Field sciences

Project Director:
Dr. Ariel Taivalkoski, University at Buffalo

Project Description:

This zooarchaeology field school is a laboratory program that focuses on the identification and interpretation of archaeological faunal materials. In addition to covering theoretical approaches to faunal remain interpretations, laboratory course work will concentrate on developing proficiency in identifying mammal, fish, bird, and herptile specimens. Using the large comparative collections at the Los Angeles Natural History Museum (third largest such museum in the U.S.), students will analyze archaeological faunal assemblages from the Channel Islands, California. This program will provide seminar course work including the study of taphonomic processes, assemblage formation, and the use of bone data to investigate archaeological questions. The course goal is to develop experienced and capable researchers in zooarcheology, a first step to a possible career in academia or the Cultural Resource Management sector. Students will have the opportunity to contribute to a scientific publication. Honors thesis and graduate level research work with the collections is possible and encouraged.

Period(s) of Occupation: Pre contact and contact period

Tuition is $2,987. This is a non residential programs and students should find their own local accommodations. Several accommodation grants will soon become available on the CFS website.

Project Size: 1-24 participants

Minimum Length of Stay for Volunteers: Full program length

Minimum Age: 18 years old

Experience Required: None. This is hands-on, experiential learning and students will study on-site how to conduct zooarchaeological research. Students are required to come equipped with sufficient excitement and adequate understanding that the work requires patience, discipline, and attention to detail.

Room and Board Arrangements:
This is a non-residential program. Students are responsible for their own room & board.

Academic Credit:
8 semester credits units through our school or record -- Iowa Wesleyan University

Contact Information:

Center for Field sciences

Los Angeles


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