The grand and distinguished tradition of archaeology at Smith—based on the study of ancient Greece, Rome and the Near East—gained a broader geographical multidisciplinary focus when the archaeology minor was introduced in 1984. Built on interdepartmental collaboration, the archaeology program works in cooperation with and is complemented by the anthropological and archaeological program at the University of Massachusetts. In addition to students who enroll in ANT 135 Introduction to Archaeology, and those who declare a minor in archaeology, students pursue archaeology studies through various avenues. Most student experiences occur during the summer in addition to the regular academic program.
Important Academic Information for Spring 2020
In response to COVID-19, Smith College has implemented alternate modes of instruction for all academic courses for the remainder of the spring semester, as of March 30, 2020. Guidelines and information for academic continuity are available below. For general information, read the college’s FAQ about COVID-19 and visit the digital support for spring 2020 website.
News & Announcements
Historic Deerfield Summer Fellowship Program
Historic Deerfield Inc. invites college juniors and seniors to apply for its nine-week, tuition-free Summer Fellowship Program in History and Material Culture. Located in the scenic Connecticut River Valley of western Massachusetts, Historic Deerfield is the perfect place to explore New England and regional history, material culture and museum studies. The 2020 program will begin on June 8 and end on August 10, 2020. Find more information on the Historic Deerfield website.
Archaeology is a method for learning about the human past through the study of artifacts and other material remains. The interdepartmental minor in archaeology is a complement to any one of several departmental majors. Archaeological methods and evidence can be used to illuminate various disciplines and will aid the student in the analysis of information and data provided by field research.
- ARC 135/ANT 135
- Five additional courses. These are to be chosen in consultation with the student’s adviser for the minor. We encourage students to choose courses from at least two different departments, and to study both Old World and New World materials.
- A project in which the student works outside of a conventional classroom but under appropriate supervision on an archaeological question approved in advance by their adviser. The project may be done in a variety of ways and places; for example, it may be excavation (fieldwork), or work in another aspect of archaeology in a museum or laboratory, or in an area closely related to archaeology such as geology or computer science. Students are encouraged to propose projects related to their special interests. This project may be, but does not need to be, one for which the student receives academic credit. If the project is an extensive one for which academic credit is approved by the registrar and the advisory committee, it may count as one of the six courses required for this minor.
No more than two courses counting toward the student’s major program may be counted toward the archaeology minor. Only four credits of a language course may be counted toward the minor.
Programs are to be arranged by the student in consultation with the adviser for the minor and should be submitted to the faculty advisory committee for review.
Not more than two courses from a student's major may count toward the minor. Only 4 credits of a language course may count toward the archaeology minor.
Students interested in archaeology are encouraged to speak with any of the advisers in the program. Always check the Smith College Course Search as well as the Five College Course Catalog, for relevant courses.
Archaeology at Smith
Harriet Boyd Hawes 1892 inaugurated the teaching of archaeology at Smith. Her discovery of the Minoan site of Gournia on Crete remains crucial to the modern understanding of Bronze Age cities in Greece.
Students have worked on geographical surveying in Idaho, as volunteer excavators in the Athenian Agora and on many other projects. (Smith has been represented in greater numbers than any other undergraduate college in the students chosen to dig in the prestigious excavations at the Athenian Agora.) Smith is a founding member of the American Academy in Roma and the American School of Classical Studies in Athens, and Smith students have been admitted most every year to the highly competitive summer programs at both institutions. In addition, Smith institutional memberships and affiliations include the American Schools of Oriental Research, the American Journal of Archaeology (founding member 1885 and a founding member of the society that supports the journal), and the Inter-Collegiate Center for Classical Studies in Rome (charter member 1964). Smith students benefit from programs offered by these institutions and our faculty are active in all of these organizations.
Archaeological Field School Databases
Archaeological Field Schools
- The American Schools for Classical Studies at Athens
- NYU Excavations at Amheida in Egypt’s Dakhleh Oasis
- Boston University Archaeological Field School
- James Madison University's Field School in Archaeological Method and Theory
- New Philadelphia Archaeological Research Project Field School in Archaeology and Laboratory Techniques
- The Thomas Cole National Historic Site
- University of South Florida's List of Archaeological Field Schools
- Smith College Libraries Archaeology Research Resources
- Western Massachusetts Society of the Archaeological Institute of America
- Archaeological Institute of America
- Archaeology Magazine