Stanford University

Why Archaeology?

Underwater excavation at Marzamemi

Archaeology is the study of the past through its material remains that survive into the present.

Stanford's Archaeology Program provides students with an interdisciplinary approach to the material remains of past societies, drawing in equal parts on the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences.

Students come to the study of archaeology from a wide range of social and academic interests. Our faculty offer diverse course options from year to year, to allow students to focus deeply on a concentration that matters to them.

Getting started

Interested in archaeology, but not sure where to start?

Archaeology 1 is our Gateway course, and challenges students to think about questions surrounding the emergence of human civilization. Archaeology 125 is a hands-on practicum course on field methods, letting students practice survey techniques to discover, map, and record archaeological sites around Stanford's campus. Explore our curriculum on our courses page!

Beyond the classroom

Explore a sunken shipwreck off the coast of Sicily, investigate the impact of colonialism on the island nation of Mauritius, or excavate the pre-Incan religious site Chavín de Huántar in Peru with Stanford Archaeology faculty!  

Our field schools are active archaeological research projects around the world. Students who attend field schools spend 4-6 weeks of their summer quarter working and learning alongside professional archaeologists. 

Field school applications are open to students from all majors, and for many students are an immersive introduction to the discipline. Learn more about next summer's field schools!

After Stanford

Excavation of Chavín de Huántar

Stanford Archaeology graduates work and teach all over the world, pursuing careers in archaeological research and teaching, as well as law, medicine, tech, museum curation, and more. 

Check out what our alumni are up to!