Research & Study Abroad

Research Opportunities

The Department of Anthropology offers a variety of research opportunities through coursework and independent studies, internships, and field schools.

A Student's Guide to Reading and Writing in Social Anthropology 

Courses and Supervised Independent Study

Many classes in Anthropology offer students opportunities to develop research skills and conduct supervised research. In addition, students can pursue research for concentration credit through independent studies with faculty who have ongoing research projects, such as in departmental labs. Concentrators often begin to work more closely with individual faculty, senior graduate students, and Peabody Museum staff on research projects during their tutorials or through supervised reading and research courses, sometimes culminating in a senior honors thesis.

Study Abroad

Fieldwork and other forms of independent research may be taken for credit through an approved university. Although concentrators will register directly with the other university, they must first obtain permission from the Department of Anthropology at Harvard, and apply for credit through the Office of International Education. Upon completion of this work and receipt of the official transcript, the department will make a recommendation to the Office of International Education regarding the amount of concentration credit to be granted toward the degree.


Peabody Museum Internship

The Peabody Museum invites applications for summer internships at the Museum for undergraduate (or recent graduates) and graduate students of any college or university. Opportunities vary from year to year, but generally the internships are designed to offer experience in museum activities such as curatorial research, collections management, archives, museum education, public programming, publications and/or conservation.   Summer internship programs are offered every other year. The next Summer Program will be offered for Summer 2020.  For more information click here

Dumbarton Oaks Summer Internships for Harvard Students
Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, in Washington, D.C., is an institute of Harvard University that supports scholarship in Byzantine, Pre-Columbian, and Garden and Landscape Studies. For more information click here

Harvard Field School Programs

Harvard Summer Program in South Africa
Rigorous interdisciplinary intellectual engagement, with the premier anthropologists in the study of ethnicity and modernity. Understand the legacies and present manifestations of colonialism in the context of South Africa's condition as a new democracy and a multi-cultural state. Explore Capetown, Johannesburg, and Kruger while engaging revolutionary new thought methods and tackling critical social issues for a globalizing world. Proseminar in Cape Town is followed by two weeks of pedagogic safari in Kruger and a homestay in the Limpopo Province. Courses count for Gen Ed credit for Culture + Belief and Societies of the World. More Information

The Viking Studies Program in Scandinavia
Itself founded during the Viking Age, the lovely Danish city of Århus and its modern university are our principal hosts. From this charming seaside location, we visit significant sites and collections throughout northern Europe, and participate in an archaeological dig connected with the Viking Age site on Samsø. Specialists in many different aspects of Viking culture lecture and guide classes.More Information

Harvard Summer Program in San José de Moro, Peru
An archaeological exploration of Andean prehistory
San José de Moro is a small village in the Jequetepeque Valley, on the north coast of Peru. In pre-Columbian times it was the site of one of the most important cemeteries and ceremonial centers of the Mochica and subsequent cultures. In 1991, a group of archaeologists began to excavate at San José de Moro and through the years revealed one of the richest archaeological sites in Peru.More Information

Harvard Summer Program in Ashkelon, Israel
In this program, students conduct fieldwork and collaborate with professional archaeological staff to excavate ancient Ashkelon, one of the most important seaports in Israel and in the eastern Mediterranean. The focus is on methods of stratigraphic excavation, recording, interpretation, and the study of ceramic typology and its applications.

Other Field School Resources

Institute for Field Research (IFR)
Field schools vetted and approved by a board of directors most of whom are professional archaeologists including Harvard Prof. Rowan Flad.
More information

American Anthropological Association List of Field Schools
AAANET Field Schools

Fieldwork Opportunities Bulletin - Archaeological Institute of America (AIA)
AFOB online continues to be one of the foremost fieldwork resources. There are over 250 listings for archaeological projects around the world. Each AFOB listing features a project profile window with icons to provide information on the size of the project, age requirements, and academic credit availability. The listings continue to provide in-depth descriptions of the projects and accommodations, as well as bibliographies and other detailed information.
Has a list of current field schools and other field opportunities.

Funding Sources for Research and International Experiences

Students who conduct senior thesis research often receive receive grants to support their work, typically undertaken during the summer after their junior year. Below are a few links to Harvard funding sources as well as information on preparing for the summer research experience.

For further information and advising about research funding, please contact the Undergraduate Program Office.