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Archaeology & Anthropology Field Schools

Europe - Romania - Bioarchaeology of Children Osteology Workshop (Transylvania) - 2014

Europe - Romania - Bioarchaeology of Children Osteology Workshop (Transylvania) - 2014

Archaeology Field School Location and Dates

Application Deadline
Start Date 2014-07-06
End Date 2014-08-02

Multiple Session information N/A
Archaeology Field School Location
Odorheiu Secuiesc, Harghita County, Transylvania, Romania

Archaeology Field School Tuition and Credits

Sponsoring College/Institution
Archaeological Techniques and Research Center (ArchaeoTek - Canada)
Haaz Reszo Muzeum (Odorheiu Secuiesc, Transylvania, Romania)

Academic Credit
We are a museum based research center and as such neither ArchaeoTek nor our partner institutions have the logistical set up to offer credits. In the past, students who sought academic recognition for their work in the field/lab with us registered to an independent study in their own university. The instructor in charge of that independent study would set up his/her own evaluating scheme and we would provide all the information thus required. Some schools were content with just a grade or a straightforward evaluation from us, while others required a detailed evaluation and/or an essay from the student. In this context, credits are arranged internally in the student's university. The number of credits (and the way they are determined) vary with each institution. We can provide an estimate of lecture and lab hours for your school to calculate credit equivalence.
Archaeology Field School Tuition
Archaeology Field School Room and Board
Students and volunteers will be housed in double or triple occupancy rooms within walking distance from downtown Odorheiu Secuiesc and the Museum, in a newly renovated hotel. A small kitchen is available to students and volunteers. Odorheiu has a many pubs, restaurants and fast food joints within a few minute walk. One can readily enjoy very good pub fare as well as Romanian traditional cuisine, accompanied with an assortment of great local wines or beer. There are plenty of stores and supermarkets, and a couple of real farmers' markets that can fulfill almost any need.
Archaeology Field School Travel
Additional Information on Tution/Room and Board/Travel Costs
The registration cost does not include the trip to and from Romania. If you arrive at the pre-established times, someone will wait for you at the train station. Participants must arrange their own travel and health insurance. Participants are responsible for their own food.

Archaeology Field School Description

Lost Churches Project - Victims of Change During the 17th century, Europe redefined itself spiritually, culturally and politically. During our 2013 season, we uncovered a very unique phenomenon: the inside of the 17th century churches in the region of Odorheiu Secuiesc, in the heart of Transylvania (Romania), was suddenly dedicated almost exclusively to infant burials. Our initial study of burials in the church in Teleac/Telekfakva showed one adult, 69 juveniles out of which 48 were of preterm or fetal age. This context created the perfect environment to expand our project to an exclusively children perspective. Recent contributions to bioarchaeological scholarship have devoted considerable treatment to the analysis of children skeletons from both archaeological and contemporary (i.e., forensic) contexts. The aim of this workshop is to provide participants with an intensive review of juvenile osteology and an overview of the ways in which this kind of unique information is interpreted by bioarchaeologists. During the workshop, participants will have the chance to study the growth and development of the human skeleton across various juvenile age cohorts, ranging from prenatal to preadult. The exceptionally well preserved skeletal remains uncovered offer a unique study opportunity. The project is designed to offer intensive hands-on experience to both students and non-credit participants. It is a research workshop which culminates with the presentation of each set of results at the International Student Colloquium on Osteology and Bioarchaeology hosted by the Haaz Rezso Museum. Participants who want to pursue and expand their summer research are encouraged to present their papers at the SAA, AAPA and CAPA.

Archaeology Field School Additional Information

Archaeology Field School Type
Laboratory - Intensive "Hands On" Osteology Research Workshop
Time Period
Late Medieval
Field School Setting/Conditions
Both the hotel and the laboratory is within 10 min walk from downtown Odorheiu Secuiesc.
How is the project area accessed each day
A 15min walk through downtown Odorheiu Secuiesc.
What is the daily schedule for the field school
8AM-5PM, Mon-Fri
Number of years this Archaeology Field School has been in operation
4 (workshop) - 14 (Transylvania fieldschools)
Is there a professional certification for this field school
Directors and Instructors
Dr. Jonathan Bethard (Boston University School of Medicine) Katie Woods (UNLV) Andre Gonciar (ArchaeoTek - Canada) Dr. Zsolt Nyaradi (Haaz Rezso Muzeum)
Specialized skills you will have the opportunity to learn
Paleodemography 1. Create an inventory of all juvenile remains curated in the collections of the Haaz Rezso Museum 2. Generate age-at-death estimates for each juvenile individual utilizing a combination of available dental and skeletal indicators: a. Dental methods include documenting observations of crown and root mineralization and patterns of tooth eruption b. Skeletal methods include documenting patterns of long bone growth and development and/or appearance and growth of secondary ossification centers 3. Differentiate between non-adult age cohorts and utilize these age categories to investigate specific bioarchaeological questions: a. Fetal (any individual less than full term) maternal health, pregnancy stress, mortuary treatment and practices b. Perinatal (time just before and after death) maternal health, pregnancy stress, mortuary treatment and practices c. Neonatal (newborn in its first month of life) rates of birth survival, mortuary treatment and practices d. Child (individual over 12 months old and up to puberty) weaning stress, mortuary treatment and practices e. Adolescence (extends throughout the period of skeletal maturation) growth and development, maturation, mortuary treatment and practices 4. Understand limitations of macroscopic sex estimation methods when working with juvenile remains Taphonomy 5. Understand the role of the burial environment on skeletal preservation and recovery of juvenile remains 6. Identification of post-mortem alterations on bones a. Identification of funeral practices: post-mortem treatment b. Identification of burial practices: primary vs. secondary burials c. Identification of animal and/or vegetal alterations Pathology 7. Record observable skeletal and dental pathologies
On rain days will there be lab work?
Will there be additional organized activities?
Will there be additional organized activities?
Is travel restriced during free time?

Other resources students will find useful or contact us at for the project information brochure

Archaeology Field School Contact Information and Website

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Field School Contact Information

Andre Gonciar Buffalo, NY 14215

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