China - Yangguanzhai


The prehistoric village of Yangguanzhai (YGZ) dates to the Middle to Late Yangshao period (4,000-3,000 BCE) and it is one of the largest of its kind.  The site is located in the Jing River Valley, approximately 25 kilometers north of the ancient city of Xi’an in northwest China.  YGZ has a moat, a row of cave dwellings, subterranean houses, child urn-burials, and extensive pottery kilns.  During the 2014 season, the project will continue working in the northeast corner of the site. We will attempt to complete the excavation of the Neolithic refuse pits found in these units. We will investigate the depositional processes that created the pits, and we will sieve the contents and extract botanical remains through flotation. Furthermore, we will conduct ceramic analysis to learn more about the exploitation of local clay sources and the pottery production at the site.  In addition, students will engage in experimental archaeology, making pottery knives as they were found in great number at the site. To gain a better understanding of the overall settlement system of the region, we will also conduct survey work at the nearby Neolithic sites of Manan and Huiduipo.  

China Yangguanzhai Archaeology Field School - Institute for Field Research Field Schools China - Yangguanzhai18-352014-06-20
Course Dates: Jun 22 - Jul 26 2014
Enrollment Status: CLOSED 
Total Cost: $ 4,950 
Course Type: Field Archaeology
Instructors: Dr. Ye Wa, Dr. Zhouyong Sun, Prof. Lothar von Falkenhausen



Ye Wa

Dr. Ye Wa

Dr. Ye Wa ( is a Research Associate at the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology at UCLA. 
Zhouyong Sun

Dr. Zhouyong Sun

Dr. Sun is an Associate Research Fellow at the Shaanxi Institute of Archaeology, Xi’an (China).  He has a B.A from Ximen University and a Ph.D. in archaeology from La Trobe University, Australia.
Lothar von Falkenhausen

Prof. Lothar von Falkenhausen

Prof. von Falkenhausen ( is a Professor of Art History at UCLA.  He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.  For more information, click here.


The experience at Yangguanzhai field school is more rewarding than one might think. You will not only learn much about archaeology, but also the local culture and customs, their language and knowing some new friends.

-Mitchell Ma, University of Toronto (2013)

Working at YGZ was a humbling and eye opening experience into not only the world of Archaeology, but also in seeing life in a completely new way in China.  The school changed my life, I came back a noticeably different person, and grew in ways I had never expected.

-Joshua Mittereder, University of Pittsburgh (2013)

This field school was a wonderful experience, and a great opportunity to learn the techniques and processes associated with Chinese archaeology. Not only was it a beneficial learning experience, I also met so many exceptional people, both in the teachers and in the participants!

-Jennifer McGough, Cornell University (2013)




Student Fees

Early Enrollment Begins November 15 - Full payment must be received by April 1  
(Full Payment = Deposit + Tuition)
 Payment by Cashier or Personal Check Payment by Credit Card/Debit Card
Deposit:500 USD Deposit: 510 USD 
Tuition: 4,450 USD Tuition: 4,540 USD 

Late Enrollment Begins April 2 - Full payment must be received 10 days prior to course start date
(Full Payment = Deposit + Tuition)
 Payment by Cashier or Personal Check Payment by Credit Card/Debit Card
Deposit:500 USD Deposit: 510 USD 
Tuition: 4,550 USD Tuition: 4,640 USD 


During the first week of the field school, students will live in a student dormitory at XibeiUniversity in the city of Xi’an.  While in the field, students will reside at the Wufulinmen Hotel near the site.

MEALS:  Food is provided Monday- Saturday (breakfast, lunch, and dinner). Students are responsible for their own meals on Sundays. All meals will be communal events and will provide plenty of nutritious but basic food in the tradition of local cuisine. The daily diet in north China is heavily based on rice, noodles and vegetables.  Specialized diets (vegan, kosher, etc.) are difficult to maintain in this location. Vegetarians may attend but will find options fairly limited.

Please let us know when you apply for this program if you have special dietary needs, as well as any medical or physical conditions. We will advise you accordingly.