Tel Beth Shemesh

June 16 - July 13, 2019

A Biblical Border City between Judah and Philistia

Since the beginning of modern explorations of the ancient world and it civilizations, Tel Beth Shemesh attracted the interest of scholars and students of the ancient Near East. Its long sequence of occupational history has yielded a great deal of information about the past civilizations that flourished and faded in the region. The site is located between two valleys that were well-suited for grain production, growing grapes and olives, and animal grazing. They were also avenues of trade and communication. Tel Beth Shemesh is located at the geographic meeting point of three different ethnic and cultural groups during the Iron Age (Philistines, Canaanites and Israelites), making it an ideal site to investigate ancient geopolitical, social and cultural dynamics at a border zone. By applying insights gained through anthropological and archaeological research, the current expedition is shedding new light these and other theoretical issues.

This summer, our excavation team will concentrate in the northern area of the site in order to explore cultural diversity, continuity, and changes from Level 4 (10th century B.C.E.) down to Level 9 (13th century B.C.E.).


How does a dig team work? What do archaeologists look for at a dig? In this documentary DVD, learn how excavators work and what we can learn from archaeology. Learn more >>


Geographic Location

Kibbutz Nativ HaLamed-heh, Israel

Periods of Occupation

Bronze and Iron Ages

Dates of the Dig

June 16 - July 13, 2019

Minimum Stay

4 weeks

Application Due

May 30, 2019

Academic Credit/Cost per Credit/Institution

8 semester credit units; $4,100 for the Field School; awarded by Institute for Field Research/Connecticut College


During the week, students and staff stay in the modest but comfortable guesthouse at Ramat Shapiro, which is a few miles from the site. Each room accommodates 3-4 people, is air-conditioned, and has an adjoining bathroom. Bedding and towels are provided by the guest-house. All meals will be communal events and will provide plenty of nutritious, basic food in the tradition of local cousin. Lunch and dinner are served in the central dining room at the guesthouse. A variety of dishes will be prepared, each of which will have a protein, vegetables, and a starch (rice, potatoes, bread, etc.). Israel is known for its fresh vegetables and fruit, so students will have lots of opportunities to try these. Breakfast is served on site (second breakfast) and normally includes cucumbers, tomatoes, and other fresh vegetables, eggs, bread, cereal, fresh milk, yoghurt, and cottage cheese. Food treats on the weekends would be falafel and shawarma dishes. The meals at the guesthouse are kosher. Specific dietary needs cannot be accommodated but vegetable dishes are always served. Tap water at the guesthouse and throughout Israel is safe to drink. Students are encouraged to participate in the optional weekend field trips. We will stay at hostels or guesthouses in southern and northern Israel, and in Jerusalem. Those not participating must find alternative accommodations.

Open For Tours

Yes - by appointment


8 semester credit units; $4,900 for the Field School; awarded by Connecticut College


Shawn Bubel

Shawn Bubel, University of Lethbridge (Canada)

Dale Manor

Dr. Dale W. Manor, Harding University

Zvi Lederman

Dr. Zvi Lederman, Tel Aviv University

Shlomo Bunimovitz

Dr. Shlomo Bunimovitz, Tel Aviv University


Miriam Bar-Zemer
2999 Overland Ave #103
Los Angeles, CA 90064
United States
Phone: 877-839-4374
Email: [email protected]