Job Listings

Research Archaeologist - Illinois State Archaeological Survey (153414)

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Job Location:
Urbana, Illinois
Laboratory and Research

Research Archaeologist

Illinois State Archaeological Survey

Prairie Research Institute

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

The Illinois State Archaeological Survey (ISAS) is part of the Prairie Research Institute at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, which is centrally located between Chicago, St. Louis, and Indianapolis. For 80 years, the University of Illinois has studied the state's archaeological heritage. ISAS incorporates that knowledge in its programs to protect, preserve, and interpret these irreplaceable and non-renewable resources within the context of Illinois' need to encourage and promote sustainable development. Learn more at

The University of Illinois is an Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action employer that recruits and hires qualified candidates without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, national origin, disability, or veteran status. For more information, visit

ISAS is seeking a Research Archaeologist to conduct and supervise field archaeological investigations and analysis projects. Position will be based in either Jacksonville or Macomb, Illinois.

Major Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Conduct and supervise archaeological field and analysis projects including, but not limited to, those involving the inadvertent discovery of human remains or mortuary contexts. Sporadic in-state travel to and from field projects for the purpose of participating in and/or conducting fieldwork or documentation of osteological remains.
  • Author compliance reports in accordance with state and federal laws and author and edit technical chapters or volumes for ISAS, the state of Illinois, and funding agencies.
  • Coordinate and communicate with teams of researchers and analysts to interpret and synthesize field notes and complete archaeological field investigations, reports, and publications.
  • Conduct general and specialized studies of osteological remains and mortuary contexts from archaeological sites in conjunction with state and federal laws and regulations, and relevant University of Illinois rules and procedures.

Required Qualifications: Master's degree in anthropology, archaeology, or closely related field. Minimum of one year of demonstrated field archaeology supervisory experience that includes surface surveys, test excavations, and the identification and excavation of pre-Columbian features. Knowledge of the archaeological resources of Illinois, the Midwest, or Southeast. Working knowledge of the pre-Columbian cultural sequence in the Midwest. Familiarity with Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act, the Illinois Human Skeletal Remains Protection Act (20 ILCS 3440), and the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA). Demonstrated writing record. Effective communication, personal relations, collaboration, organizational, teamwork, and leadership skills. Must possess strong interpersonal skills and ability to work collaboratively with other scientists, researchers, staff, and clients. Demonstrated ability to perform effectively in a diverse and fast-paced work environment consisting of multiple and changing priorities with stringent deadlines, under minimal supervision. Attention to detail, sound judgment, and strong conflict resolution skills. Proficiency in commonly employed software and databases. Must possess a valid driver's license and insurance.

Preferred Qualifications: Minimum of 1-3 years of experience conducting archaeological analysis and report preparation meeting state and federal historic preservation compliance standards. Experience in carrying out artifact-contextual analysis, particularly as associated with the inadvertent discovery of human remains. Experience with the documentation of human remains and mortuary contexts inadvertently encountered. Experience with compliance tasks associated with federal and state historic preservation legislation. Ability to obtain certification as Skeletal Analyst with the State of Illinois, as required having (a) designed and executed a human osteological study (evidenced by a graduate thesis, dissertation, or report equivalent in scope and quality), (b) received six months of supervised analytical training/experience in the identification, analysis, and interpretation of human osteological remains, (c) conducted research in accordance with currently accepted scientific standards and in compliance with curation and recordation policy of the Illinois State Archaeological Survey and the Illinois State Museum.

This is a full-time, academic professional, grant supported, 12-month position subject to the continued availability of funding and programmatic need. The starting date is negotiable and the salary is commensurate with experience.

Applications must be received by November 2, 2021. Applicants may be interviewed before the closing date; however, no hiring decision will be made until after this date. To apply, please visit to complete an online profile and to upload 1) a cover letter that clearly articulates how your qualifications and experience make you a viable candidate for this position and should address the qualifications listed above, 2) a rsum/CV, and 3) the names and contact information (including e-mail addresses) of three professional (not personal) references. All requested information/documentation must be submitted for applications to be considered. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed.

For further information please contact Lori Walston-Vonderharr, Human Resources, Prairie Research Institute, at or 217-244-2401.

University of Illinois conducts criminal background checks on all job candidates upon acceptance of a contingent offer. Convictions are not a bar to employment. The University of Illinois System requires candidates selected for hire to disclose any documented finding of sexual misconduct or sexual harassment and to authorize inquiries to current and former employers regarding findings of sexual misconduct or sexual harassment. For more information, visit Policy on Consideration of Sexual Misconduct in Prior Employment. As a qualifying federal contractor, the University of Illinois System uses E-Verify to verify employment eligibility

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