Excavation 2016

We are currently updating for the 2018 excavation season..

Stay tuned!


The excavation that will be held during 2016 will continue on the topic Viking Age harbours and trading sites. Trading and long distance contact has been one of the characteristics of Gotland since prehistory. No place in Scandinavia has such a large amount of Viking objects found during the last 200 years, and no area has seen so many silver hoards as Gotland. More than 700 hundred hoards, containing in total more than 150,000 silver coins from the Arabic world, England, Germany and other countries, provide clear evidence of the importance of the island during the Viking Age.


In 2016 we will excavate at the Viking Age harbour and trading site Fröjel! Press here to read more about the site, earlier excavations and research. Please note that we are not part of a university and can therefore not provide academiccredits. Read more about academic credits and transcripts in the syllabus below.


6 week field course

The field course is carried out over 6 weeks, from July 11th to August 19th. The course includes full board and transportation from the student residence at Hemse to the excavation site. Field methods that will be applied at the excavation are:

3D Scanning


Students will have an opportunity to watch and learn how to 3D scan finds from the excavation.

  • Basic excavation methods including troweling, following the layers detecting and separating features, and sifting.
  • Field drawings of plans, sections and features.
  • Field mapping through use of a total station, theodolite and GPS.
  • Find processing including cleaning, measuring, weighing, cataloging and photographing finds.
  • Phosphate mapping
  • Metal detecting and mapping
  • Photographing trenches and features
  • Filling in basic archaeological documentation forms


The course is set at a beginner’s level and after the completion of the course the student will be able to excavate a trench and possible features by following single contexts and stratigraphical layers together with documentation through measuring, drawing and writing.


The student will be able to distinguish from different archaeological finds and material, recognize changes in stratigraphy and clean, measure, weigh, photograph and catalog finds. The student will also learn how to write basic archaeological documentation and reports, read academic texts and discuss theories and methods in a group environment. The student should also be able to theorize around the features and find materials as well as contextualize the excavation to the surrounding landscape and the time period.

Cost for the 6 week field course


Registration fee

100 USD


4000 USD


4100 USD

The cost includes:


  • Full board at Hemse Folk High School with double room and three meals per day on all days including weekends.


  • Wifi is included together with laundry room and communal areas.


  • All lectures, seminars and 2 excursions.


  • Gear for excavating (except clothes, shoes and personal equipment).


  • Transport to and from the excavation site and the excursions

Field school director

Dan Carlsson, PhD, Associate Professor




Field school supervisor

Amanda Karn, MA





GIS and Archaeology


During the course lectures will be held in geographical information systems and how they are used in archaelogy.



For those with an artistic mind, there is oppurtunity to draw finds. Archaeological drawing is not like an ordinary sketch, you have to show the intricate parts of the artefact that a picture can't show.

Please see the syllabus for 2016.


Gotland Archaeological Field School



Arendus Ltd


Färjeleden 5

SE 621 85 Visby