The Baga Gazaryn Chuluu Survey

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  • Possibilities for Class Credit based upon the following instruction/duties/research, which will also instructions depend on the time that the student attends the expedition, e.g., Russell, our bio-anthropologist, will arrive toward the end to look at skeletal material already excavation.Some also are contingent upon discovering the appropriate site types, like habitations dating to certain periods of interest for excavation.
  • Students will receive instruction in the following sets of skills and will practice them in the field:
    • full coverage survey techniques including systematic field walking and recording of sites using prepared forms - GIS database design, data entry, and simple spatial operations
      interpreting air photos and topographical maps
    • use of a sighting compass and GPS unit
    • surface collection of sites, including sampling techniques for artifact scatters
    • small scale test excavation and recording in units of 1- 2 meters square - planning surface features, especially stone covered burials and ritual constructions
    • field preparation, sorting, and simple analysis of ceramics, lithics, and small finds
    • lithic and ceramic technical drawing
    • collecting samples for radiocarbon analysis
  • Students have the option of receiving training and participating in:
    • mortuary excavation and recording
    • soil flotation methods and heavy fraction sorting
    • simple faunal analysis for genus-species and age
    • basic bio anthro description and identification of human skeletal samples
    • surface geomorphological evaluation and soil coring
  • Topics of seminars will include:
    • An overview of Mongolian history, archaeology, and periodization
    • Site types and identification with emphasis on the ceramic chronology and lithics types
    • The design and implementation of field surveys as part of a broader archaeological research design
    • Issues in Northeast Asian archaeology that pertain to the research project and/or are of interest to research staff including models for the rise of regional steppe confederations, comparative approaches to interregional interaction, and the transition to pastoral economies