Lab Research

Work with renowned anthropologists on their research projects in the field, lab, and beyond!

Anthropology students studying food samples in a lab

School Story Lab (Prof. Susan D. Blum)

School Story Lab is a student-run lab directed by Professor Susan D. Blum at the University of Notre Dame. We want to provide a place for people from all countries to talk about their experiences in all levels of schools: the joys and fears, triumphs and shame, friendships and loneliness, curiosity and boredom, and everything else that accompanies the experience of school. School is about what people learn, how people learn, what they don’t learn, who they learn with. We want to know what it feels like. Tell us your stories! Contact Prof. Susan D. Blum if you are interested in working on this project.

Culture of Medicine (Prof. Vania Smith-Oka)

In the Culture of Medicine Lab, undergraduate students work alongside Prof. Vania Smith-Oka and graduate students on questions of obstetric violence, doctor decision-making, medical training, hospital culture, and many other topics. Students interested in joining the lab should email Prof. Vania Smith-Oka.

Bioarchaeology Laboratory (Prof. Susan Guise Sheridan)

This lab houses the large Bab edh-Dhra’ skeletal collection from Early Bronze Age, Jordan. It serves as a teaching space for Human Osteology each fall semester, and was home to the summer National Science Foundation Research Experiences for Undergraduates program (2002–2012). It is also the space in which all skeletal biology projects are conducted.

Archaeometry Laboratory (Prof. Mark R. Schurr)

This lab contains the equipment needed for the preparation samples for the analysis of stable C & N isotopes for understanding prehistoric nutrition and isotopic ecology, fluoride dating of bone, and ESR (electron spin resonance) of burned organic material for determining thermal history. Full collagen extraction facilities are available, as is a chemical fume hood, two centrifuges, 2 ovens, and a lyophilizer.

Forensic Anthropology Laboratory & Skeletal Collections Storage (Prof. Susan Guise Sheridan)

This space is specially keyed to ensure chain of custody in forensic cases. It contains a large table, lamp, and dedicated air exchange system for work with decomposing remains. There is also space in this lab to store the sizable Near Eastern collections for Byzantine St. Stephen’s monastery, and the Late Bronze Tell Dothan.

Archaeology Preparation & Equipment Storage (Prof. Mark R. Schurr)

Located near the ground level entrance to the Archaeology Annex, this space provides room for the equipment needed for archaeological excavation, in quantities sufficient for a field school. This includes numerous mesh screens, digging equipment, mapping supplies, as well as the materials needed for geophysical survey and ground-penetrating radar.

Archaeology Research & Cataloging Laboratory (Prof. Mark R. Schurr)

This area comprises two rooms equipped with adequate table space to permit the cataloguing and study of artifacts from Mid-Western archaeological excavations. It is also the teaching space for several of our archaeology methods courses.

Archaeology Faculty Research Laboratory (Profs. Meredith Chesson, Ian Kuijt, Donna Glowacki)

This shared space is used for a variety of projects from sample preparation for PIXE (particle-induced x-ray emission) analysis from the American Southwest to use-wear patterns in basalt items from Jordanian artifacts.

Archaeology Collections & Records Curation (Prof. Mark R. Schurr)

Material culture from a variety of Midwestern archaeological sites are stored in this room, including remains from the Angel Site, the Collier Lodge project, and the Removal project. Survey maps and posters from professional meetings are stored here as well.

The Hormones, Health, and Human Behavior Laboratory (Prof. Lee Gettler)

The Hormones, Health, and Human Behavior Laboratory is a wet lab where undergraduate and graduate students work together with Dr. Gettler to explore questions related to social behavior, physiology, and health. Much of the research in the lab focuses on analyzing hormones in saliva using enzyme immunoassays. Our lab members also frequently collaborate with other labs to focus on immune system measures as well as epigenetics.

Human Energetics Lab (Prof. Cara Ocobock)

Professor Ocobock's research program integrates human biology and anthropology, with a focus on the interaction between anatomy, physiology, evolution, and the environment. She explores the physiological and behavioral mechanisms necessary to cope with and adapt to extreme climate and physical activity.

Archaeological X-ray Laboratory (NDAXL) (Prof. Mark Golitko)

The archaeological X-ray laboratory houses a Bruker Tracer 5i portable X-ray fluorescence spectrometer used to measure the chemical composition of archaeological artifacts and sediments, as well as sample preparation equipment. Past and ongoing projects have explored environmental change on the north coast of New Guinea, reconstruction of trade networks in the SW Pacific, eastern North America, SE Europe, and East and West Africa, and identification of the sources of bricks used to build the Notre Dame campus. Students interested in participating in research at NDAXL should contact Dr. Mark Golitko.