Cyprus - Investigating Late Bronze Age Urban Landscapes

CNRS 335 or CNRS 535 | 3 Credits

About the program

This course is led by Kevin Fisher, Department of Classical, Near Eastern, and Religous Studies.

Dates: Tentativel scheduled from May 26, 2022 - June 26, 2022 (these dates may shift somewhat as plans are finalized). 

Topic: The main objective of this course is to train you in the principles and methods of field archaeology as practiced in the Mediterranean and Near East today so that you can work as skilled team members on any archaeological project.

Locations visited: Kalavasos, Cyprus

Funding: All qualifying students will receive a $1,000 Go Global Award

About the course

The main objective of this course is to train you in the principles and methods of field archaeology as practiced in the Mediterranean and Near East today so that you can work as skilled team members on any archaeological project.  A secondary, but still important, objective is for you to gain an understanding of Cypriot material culture and how it is used to illuminate life in the past and the rise and development of civilization on the island.  By living in a small Greek-Cypriot village, you will also gain an appreciation of both modern and traditional aspects of Cypriot culture and social life. 

You will work as members of the Kalavasos and Maroni Built Environments (KAMBE) Project (, which is investigating the relationship between urban landscapes, social interaction, and social change on the island of Cyprus during the Late Bronze Age (c. 1650–1100 BCE).  They will be involved in two main components of the project, focused on the urban centre of Kalavasos-Ayios Dhimitrios: 

  • excavations in the Northeast Area of the site, including the newly-discovered monumental Building XVI; and  
  • geophysical survey using ground-penetrating radar, and possibly other methods, aimed at the high resolution mapping of the site’s buried urban landscape. 

Various areas of this site were the subject of archaeological excavation from 1979–1998, which recovered tantalizing glimpses of a thriving Late Bronze Age urban centre, including monumental buildings, wealthy tombs, and domestic architecture, which appear to have been laid out on a grid plan.  Since 2008 the KAMBE Project has been trying to understand how these discrete excavation areas were woven together into an overall urban fabric.  The project uses a combination of remote sensing (including geophysics, drone-based aerial survey, photogrammetry, and 3D laser scanning) and excavation to investigate how the urban landscape shaped new patterns of social interaction at this critical time in the Cypriot past.  

Course Objectives

The course objectives will be met through intensive, “hands on” participation in all aspects of archaeological fieldwork.  This work will include: 

  • data collection through excavation and geophysical survey; 
  • recording of archaeological contexts and finds using a new ‘paperless’ 3D digital recording system based on photogrammetry, GPS and laser scanning, as well as more conventional methods; 
  • cleaning, processing, and classifying of finds. 

In addition to participating in fieldwork, you will attend a series of lectures on archaeological method and theory and Cypriot archaeology by project staff and other visiting scholars.  You will also visit (and give presentations on) important archaeological and cultural sites and museums throughout the island. In late June, you will attend the annual Cyprus American Archaeological Research Institute (CAARI) workshop in Nicosia, during which archaeologists working the island present the results of their work.  In addition to learning about the island’s archaeology, this is an excellent opportunity for you to network and meet other students from around the world. 

Experience in the field 

A typical day may include

This is a tentative schedule and the dates could shift slightly depending on various factors (it likely won’t get finalized until spring).  You should also be aware that the daily schedule outlined here will occasionally change (sometimes with little or no notice) subject to the progress of work, availability of equipment, weather, and other factors.  Generally, you will work on the project at least five full days per week, while another day will be spent on field trips or as a short work day, with the next day off.  Much of this time will be spent working on the excavation.  Each day, a few students will rotate onto the geophysical survey crew and learn how to lay out a survey grid and run one of the geophysical instruments, while others will assist with the 3D recording or with the collection of geoarchaeological samples as needed.   

  • 6:30am:  leave for the field. Given that we’ll be approaching the hottest time of the year on the island we need to get an early start! 
  • 9:30am:  half-hour light “second breakfast” in the field 
  • Work until around 12:45 pm (or so) when we’ll break for lunch, usually at a local taverna.  You’ll usually have a little free time between finishing lunch and the afternoon field session (maybe even a quick siesta). 
  • 3:30pm:  head back into the field for the afternoon session.  Students may continue working in the field although, on some days, they will be involved in at least some lab work such as processing and cleaning finds, data processing, and updating notebooks, or attending lectures and informal workshops.  Members of the geophysics crew might work on processing those data after lunch.  You may be assigned certain other tasks depending on your skills and interests. 
  • 6:00pm (roughly!):  finish work and return to the village where you’ll have a chance to shower, work on your blogs, hang out, and relax before dinner.  Dinners will be provided in the various village tavernas (on a rotating basis) beginning around 8:00 pm. 

A more detailed schedule will be available during the first week.  We’ll also provide a more detailed handout with information on travel, things to pack, and daily life in Cyprus. 

Tentative Schedule 

Thursday, May 26:  Arrival in Larnaca, pick-up at airport by field school staff for travel to Kalavasos; settle into apartments 

Friday May 27 and Saturday, May 28:  Start of Field School:  General Orientation 

Walk around Kalavasos village; lectures on KAMBE Project and Prehistory of region; training on digital recording methods; tours of Kalavasos-Ayios Dhimitrios and Maroni-Vournes/Tsaroukkas; meet other KAMBE Project members; welcome dinner; may start site clearance on June 1. 

Sunday, May 29:  In field doing site preparation; demos on equipment use; afternoon lectures on various archaeological data collection methods (geophysics; digital methods; etc.)  

Monday, May 30 through Thursday, June 2:  Start of regular fieldwork schedule as outlined above. 

Friday, June 3:  Tour #1 Nicosia:  Cyprus Museum; Old Nicosia and the Venetian Fortifications; Dragoman’s House (Medieval).  Students may stay in Nicosia at own expense. 

Saturday, June 4:  Day off 

Sunday, June 5 through Thursday, June 9:  regular work week 

Friday, June 10:  Tour #2 South-central Coast:  Amathus (Iron Age–Roman); Kolossi Castle (Crusader/Medieval); lunch at Kourion Beach; Kourion (Roman); Sanctuary of Apollo Hylates (Roman) 

Saturday, June 11:  Day off 

Sunday, June 12 through Thursday, June 16:  regular work week; includes tour of Khirokitia 

Friday, June 17:  Tour #3 Paphos and the Southwest: Petra-tou-Romiou (Aphrodite’s Birthplace); Kouklia-Palaipaphos (Sanctuary of Aphrodite); Lunch in Paphos; Nea Paphos and the Tombs of the Kings (Hellenistic-Roman). 

Saturday, June 18:  Day off 

Sunday, June 19 through Thursday, June 23:  regular work week; includes tour of Kalavasos-Tenta 

Friday, June 24:  Tour #4 Troodos Mountains: Alassa (Late Bronze Age); winery; Byzantine monasteries; hike to Kaledonia Falls 

Saturday, June 25:  Complete remaining project tasks as needed; packing; farewell dinner 

Sunday, June 26:  transportation to Larnaca airport for departure


For the duration of the project you will live with other KAMBE Project members in the village of Kalavasos, located about a 5-minute drive away from the archaeological site of Kalavasos-Ayios Dhimitrios. Accommodations will be in nice tourist apartments, which are old village houses that have been renovated with most of the modern conveniences (you can check out the website for the rental company here:  Most are built around a courtyard and if you’re on an upper floor, you might also have a balcony.  Most apartments have two bedrooms and will house three to five students (up to two per bedroom with one sleeping in the living room area).  These apartments will have kitchen facilities (fridge, sink, oven and range, plates, bowls, utensils and basic cooking equipment) as well as a bathroom with sink and shower.

Eligibility requirements

General Global Seminar requirements

  • You must have at least a 70% average in your most recent Winter Session of full-time studies prior to application 

  • You need to be a UBC student in good standing (e.g., not be under academic or non-academic discipline) to participate in a Global Seminar 

  • You should have full-time student status (as defined by your faculty) in the year prior to your Global Seminar 

  • You must maintain 70% average prior to your Global Seminar departure 

  • You must have completed or intend to complete the necessary (or equivalent) pre-requisite courses prior to Global Seminar start date 

  • Unclassified students will be considered on a case-by-case basis 

  • You will need to be accepted by the Program Director leading the Global Seminar 

  • You must be in your third, fourth, or final year of study. If you plan to complete your second-year requirements by the end of April 2022, you are eligible to apply.

Program-specific requirements

  • This course has no pre-requisites and students from any department may apply. 
  • CNERS students can receive a maximum of 6 credits for CNERS 335. 
  • CNERS MA students can receive a maximum of 3 credits for CNERS 535.   
  • Please contact the CNERS advising office if you are unsure whether or not you can receive credit for this Global Seminar. 

How to apply

Application deadline 

January 27, 2022

  1. Log in to the Gateway online application program 
  2. Select “Search Experiences” and type "GSP" to explore Global Seminars programs 
  3. Upload the application form for your selected Global Seminar – see Application documents below 

*Please note that you can apply for up to a maximum of 2 Global Seminars*

Program fees and costs

Approximately CAD $3,500-$3,700.

Students are responsible for covering the cost of 3 credits of UBC tuition.

The final fee depends on the number of students in the program. Students do not pay the Go Global fee when applying to a Global Seminar. The Go Global fee ($415) is built into the Program Fee and is payable upon acceptance to the program. 

Global Seminars refund policy

To withdraw from your program, you must contact Go Global by email to request a withdrawal.  You will not be charged until you officially accept your spot in the program.  Refunds cannot be issued after the program fee is charged to your SSC account. 

In the case of withdrawal, Go Global Award funding must be returned in full.

If you have questions, please connect with your Go Global advisor or email Go Global at

Pre-departure Policy

Safety abroad

UBC is committed to preparing students for safe and successful international experiences. In order to achieve this, any student participating in a Go Global Program must complete the following:

Failure to successfully complete these and any other requirements may result in withdrawal from the Go Global Program.


If you are considering applying for a Go Global program and identify with having a disability or pre-existing health condition (mental or physical) which could impact your participation, or if you require academic accommodations, you can contact the following offices and meet with an Accessibility Advisor before the start of the program:


You can contact Go Global by email, phone, in-person or virtually through Zoom.

Booking a virtual advising appointment

If you need to book an advising appointment, please email and provide an overview of the questions you have. Appointments will be held through Zoom or by phone.

Virtual drop-in advising is available on Tues, Dec 21 and Wed, Dec 22 from 1 to 3 pm PST through Zoom.

In-person drop-in advising hours

Go Global offers in-person drop-in advising at the UBC Life Building during the times below:

  • Tuesday: 1:00 - 3:00 pm
  • Wednesday: 1:00 - 3:00 pm

January Hours

Go Global will hold virtual reception hours on Tues, Jan 4 from 9:30 am to 11:30 am PST and 1 pm to 3:30 pm PST through Zoom.