Go Global Office of Global Engagement

Archaeological Excavation in Israel

AMNE 395/595 | 3 credits

Program overview

These courses are led by Gregg Gardner, Faculty of Arts 

  • Course dates: July 14 – August 3, 2024 
  • Travel dates: July 13 – August 4, 2024 
  • Format: In-person  
  • Locations: Horvat Midras, Israel   
  • Approximate program fee: $3885-4385 (Go Global fee, tuition, and flights are not included) 
    • * Note that the program fee will be significantly reduced (by 50% to 100%) by ARA funding, please see below for details. 
  • Funding available (click through to learn more about each award):  
    • ARA (qualifying Arts students only) 
    • Go Global Award (non-ARA qualifying students) 
    • Additional funds are available for students who require additional assistance beyond what is covered by the awards mentioned above. Please contact the instructor at gregg.gardner@ubc.ca for more information. 

Upcoming Information Session

  • TBD

Apply by January 30, 2023

 Application instructions here

Apply Now

About the course                                                                                                   

The course will train students in the principles and methods of field archaeology as practiced in the Mediterranean and Near East today, by participating in the excavation of Horvat Midras in Israel. This course will also provide students with an understanding of the archaeology of ancient Israel/Palestine, with special attention to the Hellenistic, Roman, and early Islamic eras – roughly from the second century B.C.E. through the seventh century C.E. This course will provide students from UBC with training in archaeology, material culture, and excavation methods that they cannot acquire in Canada. These skills will be acquired through hands-on archaeological fieldwork; by attending lectures in the evenings delivered by the instructor and visiting lecturers; in guided visits to other archaeological sites in the region; in visits to archaeological museums; and in weekend study tours to Jerusalem (2 days), and other sites. Here are two short pieces with more information about the project: 

Program eligibility  
General Global Seminar requirements

To participate in a Global Seminar, students must: 

  • Be in good-standing in their faculty (as defined by home faculty)  
  • In the year leading up to the Global Seminar, have full-time student status (as defined by home faculty)    
  • Have completed 2nd year requirements before the start of the program (i.e. 3rd or 4th year standing)  
  • Have at least a 70% academic average in your last full-time academic session before applying    
  • Maintain a 70% academic average leading up to the program  
  • Meet any program specific requirements listed below including pre-requisites before participating 
Specific requirements
  • This is an interdisciplinary program: All are welcome! This program has no prerequisites

Final selection will be done by the lead faculty program directors. Spots in the program may be limited. 

Students who wish to participate in the summer after graduating may be eligible on a case-by-case basis.

Experience and conditions in the Field

This course will be taught in Israel for 3 full weeks. This includes: 

  • hands-on archaeological fieldwork at multiple excavation sites  
  • lectures in the evenings delivered by the instructor and visiting lecturers 
  • guided visits to other archaeological sites nearby 
  • A 2-day study tour of Jerusalem 

Students will not be in a “UBC bubble” abroad. Rather, they will be living and working alongside Israeli students from Hebrew University, as well as local Israeli volunteers. The students also have the opportunity to engage with locals while living at the Kibbutz.  

Israel is very hot during the summer. Students must be prepared for the heat – keep hydrated, use sunscreen, bring hats that protect against the sun. We will be getting up early, so that we can excavate in the mornings, which is the cooler part of the day. Also, the excavation squares will be covered to provide shade from the sun. All group activities usually end by 20:00 in order to get a full night’s sleep.  


Dormitories at a local Kibbutz. There is air conditioning in the dorm rooms, dining rooms, and classroom. The Kibbutz has a swimming pool and small grocery store.  

Program fees and costs
Approximate fees: $3885-4385*

*The final fee depends on the number of students in the seminar. All Global Seminars only run if there is a minimum number of students enrolled.  

Program fees include:
  • Accommodation  
  • Program- related travel in-country; (e.g. buses)  
  • Excursions and entrance fees  
  • Some group meals  
  • On-site guest lectures
Not Included:  
  • Go Global Fee 
  • Flights 
  • UBC tuition for credits   
  • Visa/country entrance fees   
  • Health or travel insurance  
  • Most meals 
  • Personal spending money*   

* Some examples of personal costs included: mobile communication, personal transportation that is not related to the learning outcomes of the program, additional meals that are not already identified as part of the Program Fee, immunizations, Visas, etc.  

Arts Research Abroad (ARA) Funding 

This seminar is designated as an Arts Research Abroad (ARA) course. ARA courses will provide an award which will cover up to 50% of program costs and flights for eligible students. In cases of demonstrated financial need (determined by Enrolment Services), ARA may fund up to 100% of the program costs and flights. 

All eligible Arts students selected for this program will be automatically considered for the award. No application is required. To see more details about eligibility requirements, please visit Go Global Awards

If selected to receive ARA, the program fee listed above will be reduced by 50% or 100%, depending on the funding you receive.  

For example: 

Students selected for ARA 50% will have program fee reduced from $3885-$4385 to $1942.5-$2192.5. In addition, 50% of your flight will be covered (assessed based on the value of a roundtrip flight from YVR to destination during time of travel). Typically, students will need to pay for the flight first and be reimbursed through an award early in the summer term. 

Please note that not all Arts courses have ARA designation.

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