June 5th – July 16th, 2022


About the Program

The Trasimeno Archaeology Field School, based in nearby Castiglione del Lago on the shores of Lake Trasimeno between Umbria and Tuscany, provides a curricular concentration in Archaeology and History. This six-week program begins with student arrival and pick-up from the Rome airport and transfers to Perugia for the welcome dinner. After orientation, the group is brought to nearby Castiglione del Lago where they live for the duration of the program.

The Field School is conducted in conjunction with the Trasimeno Regional Archaeological Project (TRAP), a multi-faceted research program that aims to reconstruct the history of human occupation in the region of Castiglione del Lago. This project is a collaboration between the Umbra Institute, DePauw University (Greencastle, IN), and the Comune of Castiglione del Lago. Students who participate in the Field School are engaged in all aspects of the archaeological research, including excavation, documentation, scientific studies, digital modeling, and – beginning in the summer 2022 – assisting with the installation of a new archaeological museum in Castiglione del Lago.

In addition to the fieldwork, there are classroom lectures and field trips. Students will also have the opportunity to travel in Central Italy as Castiglione del Lago is conveniently situated on the train line between Rome and Florence. Program dates are provided on the Summer Archaeology Calendar.

On-Site Study

Class on Site at Lake Chiusi

The Field School consists of two courses, one theoretical and one practical, both based in Castiglione del Lago with daily work on the archaeological site. The program aims to provide you with a comprehensive overview of up-to-date theories and methods of archaeological research and fieldwork as applied to the civilizations that shaped the history and culture of central Italy.
The two courses are:

CLAS 320: Archaeology in Central Italy: the Etruscan and Roman Heritage

This course introduces students to the region’s history and heritage, as context for archaeological research. It also provides a theoretical background for the summer program’s learning and training.
Course credit: 3

CLAS 430: Archaeological Field Workshop

This course is an archaeology practicum whereby students work on the Gioiella-Vaiano Villa site, alongside archaeologists. Students gain fundamental skills in archaeological research and apply them over the course of the project. The goal of the campaign as a whole is to assess the original pattern of human impact on the entire territory and understand its development since antiquity.
Course credit: 3

The last three years of campaigns in the territory of Castiglione del Lago have revealed significant archaeological remains, including a Roman building complex and a possible Roman road. The goal of the campaign as a whole is to assess the original pattern of human impact in the entire territory and understand its development since antiquity.

ISI Florence’s mission is to develop our students’ expertise in the full range of methods and processes employed in a complete archaeological project, from research design and preliminary survey of the territory to methods of data collection in the field and digging, to the cataloging and display of archaeological remains. Investigating the archaeological heritage of this landscape, our project provides an instructive example of how different civilizations built upon one another in the same geographic area.

The Ancient Roman Excavation Site

In the summer of 2022, the project will be starting exploration of a new site just outside Castiglione del Lago in the Borgo of Ranciano. Archaeological remains visible on the surface of the site (a field currently under modern cultivation) indicate that there was a Roman presence there. Results of a recent geophysical survey indicate that there may be a kiln on the site, i.e., a large installation for the production of pottery and/or bricks and tile. The TRAP team is eager to investigate the site as ancient kilns have to potential to provide evidence about production and the ancient economy as well as the ancient environment (due to the need for fuel from trees).

This exploration will complement the work TRAP has done so far on a Roman Villa located slightly further to the west. After five seasons of excavation at that site, the project is ready to move forward with investigating other parts of the territory of Castiglione del Lago. Join us this summer to explore this exciting new discovery and unearth the secrets that lie beneath as we travel back to the time of ancient Rome.

More information about the site and the research program can be found on the blog – Click Here.
Examples of 3D visualization can be seen at the Trasimeno Digital Site Museum.

Important Note: Participating in an archaeological campaign is exciting work, but it is also sometimes tiring and challenging. It is important that you are ready and fit for outdoor physical activity. The typical day starts very early in the morning to take advantage of the cooler weather and runs until mid-to-late-afternoon.


Student Life in Castiglione del Lago

Lunch In Castiglione del Lago

Castiglione del Lago is a charming medieval town in Umbria, located on top of a small peninsula along the southwestern shores of Lake Trasimeno. Member of the prestigious “I Borghi più Belli d’Italia” Association (The Most Beautiful Villages in Italy), Castiglione is situated between renowned historical cities, such as Orvieto, Chiusi, Arezzo, Cortona, and Perugia. All Field School participants stay in Castiglione del Lago, which is only a few miles away from Perugia and easily accessible by bus or train. Program participants live in modernly furnished apartments (2-3 students each), a short walk from the lakeshore, supermarkets, and all other important amenities. All apartments include fully-equipped kitchens.

In line with ISI Florence’s traditional focus on community engagement, Field School participants have the opportunity to enjoy local day-to-day life and experience the atmosphere of an Italian town. Castiglione is an internationally renown summer destination for relaxing vacations, swimming, sun-bathing on its beaches, or for practicing a variety of sports: cycling, sailing, wind- and kite-surfing, and canoeing. The beautiful hills surrounding the area offer opportunities for hiking, mountain biking, and horseback riding. Bus and train services connect Castiglione to other cities, including Rome and Florence, making it easy to travel over weekends.

Community Engagement

The Archaeological Field School aims to involve the community of Castiglione del Lago in a long-term relationship. As part of the program, students cooperate with the local archaeological museum to enhance its visibility and impact.

Local Partnerships

The Trasimeno Archaeology Field School is run by ISI Florence in collaboration with the Umbra Institute, the Archaeological Superintendency of Umbria, the Municipality of Castiglione del Lago, and Intrageo Archaeology.

Program Dates and Fees

Program Dates

June 5, SundayDeparture from Home Country
June 6, MondayArrivals in Florence Peretola Airport (FLR) – Transfers to Castiglione – Welcome Dinner
June 7 – 8, Tuesday – WednesdayOrientation, Open House
June 9, ThursdayField School Begins
July 11-14, Monday – ThursdayLast Week of Classes/Final Exams
July 15, FridayProgram ends/Farewell Reception
July 16, SaturdayBuses Depart for Florence Peretola Airport

Program Fees – $6,575.00

What’s Included:
The academic program, airport transfers, housing in a residential hotel in Castiglione del Lago, orientation and welcome dinner (at a local restaurant), Resident Director and site coordinator, help desk and 24-hour support/assistance, residential hotel facilities (bbq, pool, etc.), ISI Florence-sponsored cultural activities, transportation to/from the dig site, daily refreshments (on-site), official transcript.

Note: Airfare to/from Florence, meals, lab fees (€ 250), textbooks, and personal expenses. Lab fees cover field trips and excursions, museum entrance fees, overnight trip to Rome, farewell dinner.

Deadline for application is April 19th. To receive additional information or to be contacted by an ISI Florence representative, we welcome you to fill out the contact form on this page. Applying is easy. Just click the APPLY NOW button and your adventure begins!

Scholarships & Study Grants

ISI Florence offers scholarships, financial aid, and partner discounts for qualifying students. Contact Us about how to make your experience more affordable.

Are you ready to unearth secrets
that have been hidden for millennia?

Trasimeno Archeology Field School Photos