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*Tel Akko, Israel: Anthropology, Classics and Mediterranean Studies and Jewish Studies (Summer)
Tel Akko, Israel (Outgoing Program)
Program Terms: Summer
Host Program Website: Visit host website for more information
Restrictions: PSU applicants only
Budget Sheets Summer
Fact Sheet:
Minimum GPA:
Class Standing:
2 - Sophomore
Courses Offered:
Anthropology, Classics and Mediterranean Studies, Religious Studies
Type of Program:
Faculty Led
Language of Instruction:
Language Requirement:
0 - none
Education Abroad Adviser:
Whitney Strickler
Internship Available:
Non-Penn State Students:
Global Programs Scholarships:
Diversity Grant-in-Aid, Grant-in-Aid, Whole World Scholarship
Program Description:
Tel Akko Israel Anthropology, Classics and Mediterranean Studies and Jewish Studies_Tel Akko Port

Program Overview                            

Tel Akko, Israel: Excavation, Survey and GIS, Conservation/Public Archaeology, Archaeological Sciences and Community Outreach

June 28 - July 25, 2015

This 6-credit archaeological field school  at Tel Akko, with a 3-credit post-excavation independent study/internship option, integrates the multifaceted aspects of twenty-first-century archaeology that combines excavation, survey, geographic information systems (GIS), landscape archaeology, conservation, heritage studies, archaeological sciences and community outreach. Located on the Mediterranean Sea and the only natural harbor in the region, the UNESCO World Heritage site of Acre/Akko/Akka is the focus of this unique and cutting-edge archaeological field school. Throughout its history, Akko has served as a major emporium for the ancient world. Bronze and Iron Age Akko, situated east of the modern city, appears prominently in ancient Egyptian, Ugaritic, Assyrian, Classical, and biblical accounts. Known locally as Napoleon's Hill, or Tell el-Fukhar, excavations on this ancient mound, have uncovered remains of Canaanite, "Sea Peoples," Phoenician, Persian, Greek, and Hellenistic culture. During more recent times, it has entered history as the city that withstood Napoleon's two-month siege and marked the end of his campaign to conquer the Middle East. Today Akko is a major tourist destination, well-known for its picturesque and historic Ottoman period town that is constructed on the ruins of the best-preserved Crusader city in the world. The archaeological field school is led by Dr. Ann E. Killebrew, co-director of the Tel Akko excavations and Penn State faculty member. 

Tel Akko Aerial View

This field school includes beginning, intermediate, and advanced levels of archaeological fieldwork.  The beginner's courses introduce students to archaeological field methods, a general overview of the history and material culture of ancient Israel and the eastern Mediterranean, and hands-on artifact processing. In addition to excavating on Tel Akko, students design their own field school experience and can select from a variety of courses and disciplines. These include survey, GIS, 3D documentation, landscape archaeology, archaeological sciences, conservation, and community outreach. Lectures, workshops, lab work, and field trips to archaeological sites and museums will complement the fieldwork. These courses fulfill the 6-credit archaeological fieldwork requirement for the undergraduate CAMS archaeology option and ANTH field school requirement. 

An additional post-excavation 3 credit independent study or internship specifically tailored to suit each student’s interests is also available.  Students should contact Dr. Ann E. Killebrew (  Upon approval, students may extend their stay in Israel from July 26, to August 5, 2015.  There will be an additional program fee of $850 for room and board plus an estimated tuition cost of $2,241.


Dr. Ann E. Killebrew, director of the Akko Archaeological Project, in Israel, is an associate professor of archaeology in the Department of Classics and Ancient Mediterranean Studies, the Jewish Studies Program, and the Department of Anthropology at Penn State. She has directed or participated in numerous archaeological expeditions in Israel, Turkey and Egypt. She is a noted expert on cultural interconnections in the eastern Mediterranean region and has authored or co-edited several books and numerous articles

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Collage of students excavating at Tel Akko dig site

Education Abroad Credits

Students will choose one of the following course options:

CAMS/ANTH/JST 499A Excavation, Survey, GIS for Archaeologists, and Landscape Archaeology (6 credits) 

Entails excavation, intensive survey, an introduction to GIS for archaeologists, and landscape archaeology. This course will introduce the students to the basics of archaeological excavation and survey methods, will give a general overview of the history and material culture of ancient Israel and the eastern Mediterranean, and will include an introductory course to GIS, 3D photogrammetry and LiDAR. The students will participate in daily excavation on the tell, afternoon labs and pottery processing, and lectures.  

CAMS/ANTH/JST 499B Excavation, Conservation, and Public Archaeology (6 credits) 

Entails excavation, conservation, and public archaeology. This course will introduce students to the basics of archaeological excavation, in addition to workshops/lectures on conservation and seminars/lectures on dealing with the various communities and shareholders involved with the preservation and interpretation of Israel's archaeological sites.

CAMS/ANTH/JST 499C Excavation and Archaeological Science (6 credits) 

Includes excavation and a seminar and lab dealing with an aspect of archaeological sciences (e.g. archaeometallurgy, zooarchaeology or archaeobotany).
Mosque in Tel Akko Israel

CAMS, ANTH, JST 496 Advanced Field Archaeology (6 credits) 

This course is designed for students with prior archaeological field experience. Students may register for this course only with the permission of the instructor and director of the project.

Graduate study credit or internship credit is possible with permission from Dr. Ann E. Killebrew.

Students can also participate in a 3-credit independent study or internship with the permission of the instructor.

For information regarding participation in the Tel Akko Archaeological Field School for 2014, please contact Professor Ann E. Killebrew

Students may not fulfill GHA (General Health and Activity) general education requirements abroad.


Successful applicants will satisfy pre-requisites established by the program.

  • 2.5 Cumulative GPA
  • Sophomore class standing or higher at time of study 
  • Brief interview with Dr. Killebrew prior to being accepted to the program

Housing and Meals

Students participating in the Akko Field School will reside at the Nautical Academy, located in the modern city of Akko on the Mediterranean Sea. The rooms will be dormitory-style, featuring full board accommodations with three to four students per room.

Program Costs

For more information on program costs, please be sure to review the Summer budget sheet. These budget sheets include information on costs that are billable to the bursar bill, as well as estimated additional costs. Costs vary by program, so it is important to review this information carefully.

Please note that tuition rates may vary depending on major and class standing.

Financial Aid & Scholarships

Tel Akko Municipal ParkPenn State students studying through Education Abroad can use most components of their existing financial aid packages toward the cost of study abroad. This may include federal and state grants, VA educational benefits, federal student loans, and University scholarships and grants. Notable exceptions include work-study awards and some athletic scholarships.
The University Office of Global Programs also administers a number of grants and scholarships. Eligibility is based on academic excellence and/or financial need. There is also funding available for study abroad programs in diverse locations and for students from diverse backgrounds. In most cases, applicants should have a current year FAFSA on file with the Office of Student Aid. Funding opportunities may also be available through Penn State academic departments. For detailed information on financial aid and scholarship opportunities and application procedures, please visit the Funding Study Abroad section of the Global Penn State website.

For More Information

For more information about programs and education abroad at Penn State, we encourage you to meet with or contact our Peer Advisers. These study abroad returnees can explain program options, give an overview of the education abroad process, as well as provide information about his/her program. If you are not at University Park, contact your Campus Global Representative

For more information about this program, please contact Ann Killebrew in the College of the Liberal Arts. You may also schedule an appointment with the education abroad adviser for this program.

For the inside scoop on life in a foreign country, be sure to check out the GeoBlogs of Penn State students currently studying abroad.

How to Apply

If you would like to participate on this study abroad program, you will need to apply to Penn State Education Abroad by clicking the "Apply Now" button on this page. 

You must complete the following materials in your application:

  •  Education Abroad Questionnaire
  •  One academic recommendation
  •  Signature Documents
Visit the How to Apply section of our website for more information.

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Getting Started
Schedule an Appointment
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Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Summer 2014 02/01/2014
02/27/2014 06/28/2014 07/26/2014
Summer 2015 02/01/2015
02/15/2015 06/28/2015 07/25/2015
NOTE: Students must arrive in Israel on Sunday, June 28,.

Indicates that deadline has passed