The point of a field school is not to go to sites where the action has politely resolved itself and examine the leavings of more experienced excavators who have sorted out the story preserved underfoot. That’s what museums are for. Or maybe really well illustrated textbooks.
For the Archaeology module, Dr. Alison Brooks of George Washington University wanted to let the students experience every step of the archaeological fieldwork process, starting with figuring out the best place to dig.
Of course, the whole process couldn’t be perfectly replicated, since we had a general area identified by Dr. Lisa Hildebrand of Stony Brook University. Dr. Hildebrand took the first step by sighting some hills on the other side of the river, thinking “those look promising” and deciding to investigate.