High School Field School

June 16-July 13, 2024

High School Field School is your opportunity to be an archaeologist. Join our summer field crew and participate in real archaeological research alongside professional archaeologists. You will learn how to do fieldwork, laboratory work, identify artifacts, and more with professional archaeologists as we investigate the German site.

The German Site (11C377)

The German Site is a Late Woodland / Jersey Bluff Phase habitation site located on a colluvial slope in the Crawford Creek valley. The site was occupied approximately 800-1200 CE. Remote sensing results indicate several possible structures and associated features. Since 2019, we have identified three house basins and several associated storage and refuse pits. A fourth possible house basin was identified in 2023. Field school students and CAA archaeologists have recovered domestic artifacts, including chert tools, pottery, animal bone, and botanical remains during the 2019-2023 field seasons. In 2024 we will continue to excavate house basins and associated features in order to better understand Late Woodland people of the Lower Illinois Valley.


Students age 13-17 may enroll for one, two, three, or four weeks. Weeks enrolled need not be consecutive. No experience is necessary. We are accepting enrollments in all program weeks. Full weeks will be indicated here as they fill.

High school seniors may enroll, but graduated seniors and anyone over 18 should enroll in the Adult Field School.

  • Week 1: June 16-22 FULL
  • Week 2: June 23-29 FULL
  • Week 3: June 30-July 6 FULL
  • Week 4: July 7-13 FULL

While in Kampsville, students participate in field and laboratory work with CAA archaeologists. Students learn excavation techniques, including shoveling, troweling, mapping, measuring, soil description, and flotation sampling. Lab work includes artifact washing, identification, and flotation. These activities are supplemented by occasional evening lectures by CAA archaeologists and guest archaeologists on various archaeological topics. Evening activities may include hikes and activities related to prehistoric lifeways. The day usually begins at 7 am with breakfast and ends by 9 pm.

Please see the High School Field School Schedule and Gear List for program details. 

Students staying for more than one week can do laundry, visit local cultural sites, and relax on the weekends. Weekends are fully supervised. While we do not have regular food service on the weekends, breakfast and lunch foods are available. We cook out or eat at a local restaurant for dinner. Students should bring spending money.

Students should arrive on the Sunday and depart the Saturday after their program ends. 

Parents are responsible for arranging their child’s transportation to and from Kampsville. Shuttle service from Lambert-St. Louis International Airport (St. Louis, MO) or the Alton, Illinois Amtrak station is available for an additional cost.

Please do not book travel arrangements until you have been admitted into the program and have received the full travel instructions.


Tuition includes room, all meals Monday through Friday, supplies, and instruction. Students may enroll for any number and combination of weeks.

  • 1 Week: $950
  • 2 Weeks: $1875
  • 3 Weeks: $2800
  • 4 Weeks: $3700

Scholarship support for girls is available through our Women in Archeology Scholarship program.

Scholarships are also available to all through our Kampsville Legacy Scholarship program.

Residents of Calhoun, Pike, Greene, and Jersey counties receive a 10% discount on tuition.


Students stay in one of the CAA’s dormitories while in residence. Dormitories are basic, bunkhouse-style living facilities without TV or internet. Rooms are at minimum double occupancy. The total number of roommates is based on program enrollment, with a maximum occupancy of four. Boys and girls have separate sections of our dormitory, with a monitored door dividing the sections. Separate shower and restroom facilities are provided. Adult chaperones are on duty 24/7. Our facilities are approved by the Illinois Department of Public Health, and meet the Illinois Youth Camp Act’s criteria.

How to Enroll

Download, complete, and return the 2024 HSFS Application.

If you applying for a scholarship, please include that application as well. Your program application will not be reviewed until your entire scholarship application has been received.

Upon receipt, we will send you a confirmation by email, a packet of additional information, and instructions for payment.

Please do not submit tuition or deposit payment until you are certain the week you selected has open spaces.

If you have not received confirmation, we have not received your application!

Registration for the program closes one week prior to the start of each session. 

Enrollment is limited to 24 students per week. Those applying after enrollment capacity is reached will be added to the waiting list in the order of receipt of a complete application.

Questions: If you have any questions, please contact the CAA at education@caa-archeology.org or 618-653-4316 for more information.

Credit Options for High School Field School

High School Academic Credit

Many students have received credit through their high school for participation in our program. Our staff will work with the guidance/academic counselor at your school to meet the school’s credit criteria. Contact us for details. Please note that students may apply for Lewis & Clark Community College credits.

College Credit Option

Through our partnership with Lewis & Clark Community College, Godfrey, IL, we are able to offer 2 credit hours for students.

To earn credit hours, students must satisfactorily participate in the program and complete a short essay about their excavation unit. LCCC charges a $10 fee per credit ($20 total) for High School Field School Credits.

Grading/Evaluation: Students are evaluated on his/her performance in the program and the quality of their essay. To receive a positive evaluation, students must participate in all aspects of the program: field excavation, laboratory work, and supplemental sessions. They must also demonstrate a positive attitude, good work ethic, motivation to learn, and willingness to work collaboratively with staff and fellow students.

Registration Process: To registration for college credit, please request a registration form when you enroll in field school.

Questions: If you have any questions, please contact the CAA at education@caa-archeology.org or 618-653-4316 for more information.