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Global Consortium: Mycenae

The American Center for Archaeology at Mycenae (ACAM) program is a new study abroad opportunity for undergraduate students.

Program Description

The program will take place in the small town of Mycenae, Greece during the Spring 2018 semester. Although the focus is on archaeology, interdisciplinary academic courses about classics, art, history, and more are also offered. There is a state-of-the-art outdoor simulator and an open-air theatrical area where some classes may be held. Classes will be taught in English by American and Greek professors. 


Mycenae, Greece


January 20, 2018 - May 10, 2018



*cost breakdown below

Courses & Credit

Limit of 4 courses, each at 3 credits.

Field Archaeology
This course focuses on archaeological field and laboratory methods through readings, lectures, and hands-on experiences (dig simulator) and the data these practices generate. It will cover the essential field methods employed in archaeological survey (ground, aerial, geophysical) and excavation. This will include the fundamentals of documentation including note taking, drawing, photography, and map-making. It will also introduce how archaeologists organize and analyze the large quantities and wide range of data recovered in these processes with particular attention to the use of computer databases, especially Geographic Information Systems (GIS). It will provide a general overview of different types of laboratory analysis including lithics, ceramics, metals, plant and animal remains, and will discuss the available dating methods. Students will have the opportunity to practice many of the field and lab methods in the Simulated Excavation Field (SEF) and, when available, archaeological sites. Through these experiences and interactions with a range of archaeological datasets, students will learn how the archaeological record is formed and what its patterns can teach us about ancient human livelihoods. Finally, students will learn to synthesize and present the results of field and laboratory research in reports, a critical genre of writing in the discipline.
Archaeogeophysical Survey: Methods and Techniques
This course is designed to provide a thorough up-to-date insight into mapping methods of archaeological prospection. It will consist of both lecturing and practical work (either laboratory exercises or field work.) The principles of magnetic and resistance mapping will be taught, plus the surveying techniques and data collection procedures. An introduction to magnetic susceptibility, magnetization of materials and conversion of magnetic oxides in soils will be given. The principles of the instrumentation commonly employed will be explained and training in their use will be provided. Students will be trained in designing and carrying out a geophysical survey either in the dig simulator or in real terms either in the archaeological site of Mycenae or elsewhere. The geophysical and image processing procedures for data processing will be explained and actual computer training will take place at the installations of the American Center for Archaeology at Mycenae (A.C.A.M.). Emphasis will be put on the use of processing sequences. The data visualization methods will be explained in detail. Also, the benefits of using image fusion algorithms will be demonstrated. The final aim would be to understand and be able to construct a visualization of the prospection data in a form that resembles the ground view of the concealed ancient remains that could have been drawn if excavation had taken place. Students will learn to present the results of the survey in reports.
Introduction to Archaeological Science and Environmental Archaeology

This course introduces the students to Archaeological Science, focused on Environmental Archaeology. It is designed to provide a broad theoretical and practical understanding of specialist approaches to the interactions between people and their environment in the past and of a wide range of modern scientific methods applied in archaeology. The course focuses particularly on the analysis of organic remains of humans, animals and plants, as well as on the study of ancient landscapes and palaeoenvironment. Through lectures, seminars, and laboratory based hands-on training, the course will familiarize the students with the major scientific fields in Environmental Archaeology and equip them with a critical understanding of the inter-disciplinary tools currently available to the study of the human past. On completing the course, the students will be familiar with a wide range of science-based techniques applied in archaeology, will be able to read and evaluate the contribution of relevant research, and will be prepared to delve deeper into specific areas of interest.    

Digital Documentation of Archaeological Monuments and Sites

This lab course will introduce students to the principles of descriptive geometry, the historical and theoretical background of applied technology in architecture, as well as hands-on training in direct and indirect surveying, digital technologies in cultural heritage, and use of cultural databases, metadata schemas and international standards (technologies for cultural heritage presentation, dissemination, interactive and immersive experience.)

The International Illicit Antiquities Market

This course deals with the trafficking of antiquities internationally, focusing on the last 50 years, and especially the developments in the illicit trade since 2005, using case studies throughout. Students will start with a historical introduction, then will survey the leading dealers of the international market. The central sessions of the course will consider the roles of auction houses, museums and galleries. Focusing especially on Greece, Italy, the UK and the USA, students will discuss the level of proof needed for a successful claim and repatriation, before they examine various strategies proposed for regulating the market in the future. Lectures will be combined with interactive discussion sessions.

Mycenaean Art and Archaeology

This course is a general introduction to the art and archaeology of Mycenaean Greece, with consideration of both the Aegean sites and the Mycenaean trade-posts and colonies in Asia Minor, Cyprus, the Levant, Palestine and Egypt. This course will provide a survey of architecture, pottery, sculpture, frescoes, seal-stones, metalwork (metallic vases, weapons, jewelry), stone-carving and ivory-carving in class and during museum field trips. There will be a comparative study of typological, iconographical, stylistic, and technical aspects and developments. Cultural contextualization and consideration of the historical framework, socio-economic, political and administrative context, writen word and religion will be made. This course will take a look at major interpretative issues and problems in Mycenaean archaeology, including relative and absolute chronology. Students will also analyze the collapse and fall of the Mycenaean citadels, military power, and international dynamics and contacts. Evaluations of the Mycenaean legacy and its contribution to ancient Greek and modern western civilization will be made.

Mediterranean Interconnections: the Aegean, Egypt, and the Near East

The course focuses on the cross-cultural interconnections in the eastern Mediterranean basin between the Aegean, Egypt and the Near East. It examines modes of cultural transmissions and materiality from the Bronze Age to the Classical Period. It provides an interpetive survey and a thematic coverage of important aspects of Egypt and the Aegean with a special focus on the Late Bronze Age and the Early Iron Age. Themes include trade and exchange, burial ideology and practices, religious modes of thought and action, scripts and literacy, and hierarchy and political organizations. The students will benefit from accessing the unique Egyptian collection in the National Archaeological Museum of Athens, which will provide the platform for the teaching of the ancient Egyptian civilization and its wonders, as well as major Prehistoric Antiquities in Mycenae and Athens. 

The Topography and Monuments of Ancient Athens

This seminar will focus on ancient Athens, one of the most renowned ancient city in the world, and arguably the birthplace of democracy, rhetoric, philosophy, historiography, theater, classical art, architecture, and the first modern Olympic Games. The course aims to familiarize the students with the long history and complex archaeology of Athens, focusing mainly on classical Athens. Topics include in-depth analysis of major architectural complexes and public monuments, with special emphasis on the Acropolis and the Parthenon, the Athenian Agora, Areopagus, and Pnyx; Athenian temple architecture and important Attic sanctuaries; domestic architecture; and cemeteries and funerary architecture. Athenian sculpture, ceramics, and painting will also be examined. The seminar will produce a reconstruction of public, civic, and private everyday life, religious festivals, art and politics, historical contextualization of the Athenian miracle and its golden age with special consideration of ancient literary sources.  

Intensive Modern Greek I

This is an accelerated, intensive, specialized and targeted course, aiming at preparing students for a semester abroad at the American Center for Archaeology at Mycenae, Greece. The goals are to prepare students to communicate in Modern Greek at a basic level while living and studying in Greece and to enhance their experience with the local people and culture. The course teaches a basic oral command and understanding of Modern Greek, including a basic vocabulary of commonly used words and idiomatic expressions, as well as some specialized, professional or technical terms specific to archaeology. Special attention will be given to building the necessary language infrastructure with an emphasis on reading, listening comprehension, speaking, reading and writing. No prerequisites; appropriate for students entering the program without any prior knowledge of the language.

Cost Breakdown

The program cost of $19,950 includes: 

  • Tuition for 4 courses
  • Room and board
  • Local transportation (to/from airport, to/from housing location and learning center)
  • Travel (day and extended trips included in the program – does not include personal travel)
  • Health insurance
  • Administrative fees

The program fee does not include:

  • Study abroad application fee
  • Roundtrip airfare
  • Personal expenses

Application Information

To apply for the program, please fill out an Interest Survey, and further instructions will be emailed to you. The application deadline is December 1, 2017.

For More Information

Contact Molly Joyce at

Visit for more information on The American Center for Archaeology at Mycenae.