Peru - Vitor


The Vitor Archaeological Project is a comprehensive, longitudinal study of the lower Vitor Valley, approximately 40 kilometers west of the modern city of Arequipa. This is a multi-disciplinary project with strong field, textile analysis, bioarchaeological and conservastion components. The project is focused primarily on the Early Intermediate and Middle Horizon occupation periods of the valley, with a strong emphasis on the Millo site complex. We have already identified extensive Wari influence and possible presence at Vitor, including a D-shaped temple and significant quantities of Wari-influenced ceramics. In 2015, the VAP will continue excavations at the D-shaped temple under the direction of Lic. Augusto Cardona. In addition to this field investigation, significant time will be dedicated to laboratory analysis of materials excavated from the temple and a Ramada cemetery excavated in 2012 and 2014. This analysis will include skeletal remains (Lozada), ceramics (Barnard), and textiles (Hayeur-Smith, Lazo and Coogan). Archaeological survey under Dr. Hans Barnard will also be a critical component of this field school. 

For the 2015 program orientation video, click here.

Peru - Vitor - Institute for Field Research Field Schools Peru - Vitor Peru - Vitor 18-35 2014-06-20 Study Abroad Archaeology

Course Dates: Jun 20-Jul 25, 2015
Enrollment Status: CLOSED
Total Cost: $ 4,600
Course Type: Field Archaeology
Payment Deadline: April 25, 2015
Instructors: Dr. Maria Lozada, Dr. Hans Barnard, Lic. Augusto Cardona Rosas
Orientation: April 25 at 3:00 pm PST 



The directors welcome emails and inquiries about the research elements of this project. More general questions (tuition, health insurance, payment schedule) may be addressed by IFR staff. Contacting the directors or the IFR office is encouraged and appreciated. It may help you determine if this field school is a good fit for you.

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Dr. Maria Lozada

Dr. Lozada ( is Senior Lecturer at the Romance Language and Literature Department and Research Associate at the Anthropology Department, University of Chicago.  For more information, click here.
Hans Barnard

Dr. Hans Barnard

Dr. Barnard ( is an Assistant Adjunct Professor at the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures and at the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology at UCLA.  For more information, click here

Lic. Augusto Cardona Rosas

Lic. Cardona Rosas is the Director of the Centro de Investigaciones Arqueológicas Arequipa (Peru).  For more information, click here.


"The Vitor Archaeological Project was incredible, in many different ways. It was an excellent exposure to field archaeology, and an especially exciting combination of various archaeological disciplines: mortuary excavation, surveying, conservation, textile analysis, bioarchaeological analysis, ceramic analysis – one could not ask for a more comprehensive introduction to the practice of archaeology. The instructors were fantastic – brilliant, funny, caring people, always trying to ensure that the students learn and have a good time. They were friends as much as faculty. As for fellow students, there is little I could say to do justice to how amazing and kind they were, and how much fun it was to work alongside them. And I would be remiss not to mention the hospitality and generosity of the people of Vitor, and especially that of our hosts, who made us feel at home away from home. Our too brief stay in Peru was wonderful – it was a country and culture I had never seen before, and a thrill to explore. In all aspects, academic, personal, and everything in between, the VAP was a valuable and profound experience."

-Anurag Kumar, The University of Chicago (2014)

"The Vitor Archaeological Project (VAP) establishes standards by which other field schools should be measured.  It was clear right away that much thoughtful planning had gone into the field school, academically and logistically.  I came away with a clear understanding of current theories and practices in Andean archaeology as they apply to the Vitor Valley. The school was equally accommodating to students new to archaeology and to students committed to the field. The faculty members, all experts, were excellent teachers and congenial members of our field school community. The enviably low faculty-student ratio was amazing.  My fellow students were friendly and easygoing.  Every effort was made to ensure a smooth adjustment to living and learning in Peru.  It was great getting to know Peruvian friends of the project in Vitor and in Arequipa.  I especially appreciated the emphasis on community outreach, which gave others and me the opportunity to speak to local high school students about our work.  The best part was that the entire VAP team was enthusiastic about the field school, about archaeology and about Peru!"

-Alan Coogan, Portland State University (2013)
"The Vitor Archaeological Project was such an incredible and inspiring experience for my education and I.  The environment created by the faculty members and leaders of VAP was comforting and appropriate for all members involved. They made it easy for all students to adapt fittingly to new surroundings as all of us travelled from aborad.This field school does an incredible job of maintaining objectives for each week so that the students are able to grasp the fundamental concepts associated with Archaeology. Not only do the faculty members provide knowledge about their areas of expertise, but they also help students one on one to make sure they are getting as much as possible out of the experience.  From an archaeological perspective, we were all able to acquire a balanced set of fundamental aspects such as site survey, excavation techniques, mortuary analysis, conservation, artefact analysis, and much more. For anyone interested in a field school in Peru, I strongly suggest you put Vitor Archaeological Project on the top of your list. This program challenges you to explore and learn outside of your comfort zone and really integrates the environment in which a field school should be set in, no matter what part of the world you’re in. I will never forget my experience with all of the amazing people I met on this journey and surely, I will be back!"

Amy Kramer, Indiana University (2014)

"The IFR Peru-Vitor Archaeology field school was a fantastic experience and very enriching! During my search, I was looking for a field school program that had an emphasis on bioarchaeology and located in Peru. Peru is an area I may want to pursue/conduct research in the future, and when I found this program it was perfect. This was my first time traveling to Peru to participate in a dig and conduct archaeological research. This year the program focused on numerous aspects of archaeological fieldwork/research, such as surveying, excavations, conservation, lab work, and community outreach. The other students participating in the program were an amazing group of people and we've become very good friends! The faculty was very knowledgeable, passionate, hilarious, and helped out the students every step of the way when they needed help. Also, Vitor and Arequipa were very beautiful places. Overall, the experience I've gained from this program over the course of five weeks will become very valuable towards my career goals in bioarchaeology."

Christopher Nicosia, SUNY College at Oneonta (2014)




Student Fees

Deposit: 500 USD
Tuition: 4,100 USD
TOTAL: 4,600 USD
Once your application is accepted, the deposit fee secures your seat in this project. This program requires an application. There is no application fee. Only accepted students are provided with the link to pay the deposit fee.

What is Covered:

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  • Costs of instruction
  • Room & board. Look at the field school syllabus above for details
  • Credit units and two transcripts
  • All local transportation
  • Health Insurance and Political & Natural Disaster Evacuation Insurance - For all international programs
  • An IFR T-Shirt
  • A 2% Processing Fee is automatically assessed for all credit/debit card payments
  • A $100 Late Fee will be assessed if full tuition payment is not completed by April 25, 2015.


Students will live in comfortable but modest field housing in the Vitor Valley and in Hotel La Casa de mi Abuela when in Arequipa.  While at the field house in the Vitor Valley, all participants will be expected to help keep the living spaces orderly and assist with daily tasks, which may include the preparation of meals and other activities necessary for a successful field program. 

MEALS:  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 Peru is heavily based on rice, corn, potatoes and meat.  Specialized diets (vegan, kosher, etc.) are near impossible to maintain in this location. Vegetarians may attend but will find options limited.