PAAC Classes

What is PAAC?

A joint program of the Colorado Archaeological Society and the Office of the State Archaeologist of Colorado. The Program for Avocational Archaeological Certification (PAAC) is a mutually beneficial educational program for avocational and professional archaeologists. Established in 1978 by the Colorado Archaeological Society (CAS) and the Office of the State Archaeologist of Colorado (OSAC), it allows CAS members and other citizens to obtain formally recognized levels of expertise outside of an academic degree program. It also facilitates avocational public service and assistance in education, governmental management of cultural resources, research, and the protection of archaeological resources in Colorado. PAAC complements, but does not replace, existing university and governmental training programs. Click here to go to the History Colorado PAAC website.

Requirements of PAAC:

All participants in the PAAC program must:

  • Be 15 years of age or older
  • Agree to the PAAC Code of Ethics
  • Pay a non-refundable, nominal materials fee per course (also sometimes a fee for the meeting room)

Dates for all courses are tentative and subject to change.  Please contact your Local Coordinator for details.

List of current PAAC offerings (statewide)



Current Offerings:  

Fall 2019 

Principles of Excavation

Dates: Class: September 24, 26, 30, October 1, 2019 from 5:45-8:45 pm | Fieldwork: October 5, time TBD

Where:  Class: Boulder Rural Fire Center, 6320 Lookout Drive, Boulder | Fieldwork: History Colorado, 1200 N Broadway, Denver

Cost: $20

Description: This course would be valuable for anyone interested in taking part in a field school or volunteering on an excavation. This course provides basic background information on the history, development, and application of archaeological excavation techniques. Emphasis will be on the importance of proper supervision, planning, documentation, and reporting in all excavation projects. The class schedule consists of 4 evenings of classwork and 1 full day either at the History Colorado Center or a field trip to an active excavation and possibly field practice in the Denver area. Stay tuned for further details.

If you have any questions about content and structure, please contact Rebecca Simon at 303-866-4671 or rebecca.simon@state.co.us.

To register, contact Delane Mechling, IPCAS PAAC Coordinator (mechlings@hotmail.com). 



Previous Offerings:

Summer 2019 

Summer Fieldwork

Dates: July 7-20, 2019 (Fieldwork: July 8-12 & July 15-19)
Where: Lone Mesa State Park, north of Cortez

Spring 2019 

Basic Site Surveying Techniques

Dates: In class: April 23, 25, 30, May 7 & 10; Fieldwork: May 4
Time: 5:30 – 8:30 pm 
Where: Classroom: Boulder Rural Fire Station (6320 Lookout Road, Boulder) || Fieldwork: Walker Ranch (7701 Flagstaff Road, Boulder)

 Fall 2017

Colorado Archaeology

Dates: September 8th (evening), 9th & 10th all day
Location: Montrose (BLM office)
To sign up, contact: Beverly Kolkman
Host CAS Chapter: Chipeta

Prehistoric Ceramic Description and Analysis

Dates: Tuesday evenings, 6:30-9:30, October 10, 17, 24, November 7, 14 
Location: Loveland (Medical Center of the Rockies)
To sign up, contact: Dave Swinehart
Host CAS Chapter: Northern Colorado

Archaeological Practice in Colorado

Dates: October 14, all day
Location: Durango (Center of Southwest Studies, Fort Lewis College)
To sign up, contact: Tish Varney
Host CAS Chapter: San Juan Basin

Dates: November 3rd (evening), 4th & 5th all day
Location: Pueblo (El Pueblo History Museum)
To sign up, contact: Barbara Sabo
Host CAS Chapter: San Juan Basin

Artifact Illustration

Dates: Friday, October 27th 
Location: Denver (History Colorado Center)
Instructor: Dr. E. Steve Cassells