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Study Abroad

France, Germany, Austria, Czech Republic: Experience cultures and discover knowledge far from home. WSU’s Study Abroad allows you to take your sociology or anthropology studies to other countries, while earning academic credit.

2015 archaeological excavations at Isert Kelly Castle in Ireland, including WSU students and students from other institutions. Video from Rory Sherlock on Vimeo.

Where We’ve Been


Anthropology: Colonial Frontiers (New York and French Canada)

On this trip we explored 400 years of history in New York and French Canada, from the first Native American-European contact through the American Revolution.

Destinations highlighted life on the 'multicultural' colonial frontier and relations between native Iroquois peoples, French, Dutch, English and American societies in the context of trade, conflict and imperial rivalries. During the trip, students learned from archaeologists and historians with expertise in the region as we traveled along three major corridors of settlement, trade and conflict: the Great Lakes from Niagara Falls to the Mohawk Valley; the Champlain corridor north to Montréal, Canada; and the down the historic Hudson Valley and West Point to New York City, where we spent three days exploring the rich history of the city’s contribution to the American story.

Sociology: China and Tibet

The Sociology/Chinese Language 2018 China/Tibet Study Abroad group visited Chengdu, Tibet, Xi'an, Beijing and Shanghai. Besides visiting the famous historical and cultural sites and museums, they also went to Sichuan University and Shanghai Normal University to mingle with Chinese college students and interviewed them about their lives, education, and other issues.


Anthropology: Celts, Romans, and Early Medieval Europe

On this trip, we viewed museum collections, archeological and historical sites important to understanding the long history of the Celts on the European Continent and the impacts of Roman expansionism. A sense of place, architecture, art, iconography and other features that helped with understanding the events that occurred in these key places. Day-to-day travel activities brought us into constant contact and interaction with people and cultures of modern Europe. This gave us the important experience of understanding operations in current living cultures and allowed us to see how Celtic ideas influence their descendant cultures.


Sociology: China

China is a misunderstood country both in the West and in the United States. It is changing every day, and participants on this trip discovered a different outlook and understanding after landing in the country. They saw the overwhelming economic development, skyscrapers everywhere, over population, air pollution and traffic jams and learned why China implements a one-child per-family policy and the pros and cons of this policy.

Anthropology: Ireland

This trip had two components, focused on two different, but entwined, streams of learning. Students could participate in either or both components.

The first component was designed to help students identify key phases in medieval buildings through an examination of their fabric, as well as to understand the events that occurred in these buildings. Students produced an accurate plan of a simple medieval building to scale through on-site survey. The selected sites were prime illustrations of materials and ideas discussed in the classroom (Castleology) prior to departure, and then reinforced in discussions during the visits.

The second component was designed to give students interested in archaeological excavation an opportunity to participate in an accredited international field school in Ireland, excavating a late-medieval tower-house castle in County Galway; i.e. the type of built culture they were introduced to during the Castleology class and/or the first component of the course. Students were taught to work on an excavation site in a safe manner, understand the nature of a site grid, use excavation tools with skill to produce clean surfaces, identify and record archaeological objects during the excavation process, identify obvious deposits and cut features, discuss their stratigraphic context, record data onto context sheets, and assist in drawing site plans, sections, elevations and profiles to scale.


Anthropology: Ireland & Wales

This trip focused on the archaeological past of Celtic culture in Wales and Ireland from the Iron Age through the early medieval period, along with earlier periods (the Neolithic and Bronze Age). Other aspects included Irish culture of more recent concern, such as the 19th century famine and Northern Irish troubles since the 1960s. The itinerary allowed students to view museum collections; archaeological and historical sites important to understanding the story, past and present of the Celts of Wales and Ireland, as expressed by the choice, strategic use and sense of place, architecture, art, iconography and other features; and to help students to understand the events that occurred in these key places.

Video: Students learn Irish dancing on study abroad


Anthropology: France, Germany, Austria, Czech Republic

This trip focused on of the archaeological past of the Celts in continental Europe, including visits to key habitation sites in Caesar’s Gaul such as Alesia and Bibracte, Iron Age settlement sites in Germany and the Czech Republi, and the earliest generally agreed upon Celtic site in Hallstatt, Austria. We will also visit Bretagne, where Celtic culture and language best survive in France today and look at important early sites and artifacts in/under Paris. In addition, we will visit sites in Prague, the Czech Republic.