students performing an archeological dig with just hands in frame
square ARC logo with grey, blue and yellow accent clolors

The Archaeological Research Center (ARC) at UC Santa Cruz serves as a center for interdisciplinary archaeological research on the UC Santa Cruz Campus, and a crucial link between UCSC and the broader local community.

ARC is not currently a degree-granting program. However, ARC faculty members accept graduate students in world-class home departments across the campus. For further information about applying for graduate school in one of these programs, please visit the following department pages.

Director’s Message

UC Santa Cruz is an exciting place for Archaeology! In the past few years, the community of scholars engaged in archaeological research at UC Santa Cruz has grown dramatically, not just in anthropology, the traditional home of archaeology programs in many North American institutions, but across all five academic divisions.

Faculty across the Social Sciences, Humanities, Arts, Physical and Biological Sciences, and Engineering engage in a wide range of theoretical and methodological approaches to generate new perspectives on the human past. From 3D modeling and ancient DNA analysis, to settlement patterns and the study of animal remains, faculty on our campus are pushing the boundaries of archaeological research and community engagement.

The Archaeological Research Center was established in 2014 to brings these approaches together, to encourage new and innovative ways of exploring our collective past. Since then, the ARC has fostered a creative archaeological inquiry on campus and beyond, promoted undergraduate and graduate research in archaeology, and made important connections with the broader community. Please join us in this exciting venture, and I look forward to seeing you at our upcoming events.

J. Cameron Monroe
UCSC Archaeological Research Center

J Cameron Monroe headshot wearing a UC hat with a field site in the background

Archaeology News

Recent Publications

heritage and democracy cover with graffitied monument as focal point, full name of publication included

Heritage and Democracy

Crisis, Critique, and Collaboration, co-edited by Kathryn Lafrenz, and Jon D. Daehnke

6000 BC Transformation and Change in the Near East and Europe cover

6000 BC

Transformation and Change in the Near East and Europe, co-edited by Peter F. Beihl and Eva Rosenstock

Constructing the sacred cover with full name and image of Egyptian landscape

Constructing the Sacred

Visibility and Ritual Landscape at the Egyptian Necropolis of Saqqara by Elaine A. Sullivan

Archaeology of Refuge and Recourse cover with illustration of California woodland and full publication title

The Archaeology of Refuge and Recourse

Coast Miwok Resilience and Indigenous Hinterlands in Colonial California by Tsim D. Schneider

Events We Host

The ARC hosts events oriented towards both the campus and broader communities throughout the year. See what’s coming up via the campus calendar.

Please check our calendar or join our listserv to be informed of upcoming events.

landscape of a site with large structure in the background and blue skies

Frontiers in Archaeology Lectures

Archaeological research increasingly calls upon scholars to reach across multiple academic fields, drawing methodological and theoretical inspiration from a wide range of disciplinary practices.

The ARC sponsors the Frontiers in Archaeology campus lecture series, which brings eminent scholars to campus to explore the best that such interdisciplinary research has to offer.

Five Monterey Bay Archaeology Archives students standing in front of chalkboard that says welcome

Archaeology & Biological Anthropology Lunch Seminars

The ARC co-sponsors, with the Department of Anthropology, the Archaeology and Biological Anthropology Lunch Seminars (aka the Arch/Bio lunches).

These talks are held semi-weekly, and include both thematic lectures of interest to the general campus community, as well as focused workshops primarily directed towards undergraduate professionalization.

several students walking in a grassy and dense green are in single file

Archaeological Institute of America Public Lectures

The ARC co-sponsors, with the Department of History, the Santa Cruz chapter of the Archaeological Institute of America.

Local societies such as ours sponsor lectures and events of interest to their members, and provide a local forum for people with an interest in archaeology to meet and talk.

The national organization also sponsors a series of three lectures for each local society on a broad range of topics. Both basic and student membership in the AIA include a subscription to its popular magazine, Archaeology

lab students standing in circle looking at one another


The ARC sponsors occasional workshops for the campus community on archaeological methods.

Past workshops have included hands-on programs in archaeological photogrammetry, drone survey, and ceramic analysis.

Last modified: Dec 14, 2023