RISC Archaeology & CMT Inventory Training for Crew Members 


The RISC Archaeology & CMT Inventory Training for Crew Members course is a five-day applied training program that provides participants with introductory research and sampling skills in the field of archaeology and heritage resources. 

This RISC course includes both daily classroom and field training and exercises, where participants learn skills and abilities in: site identification, survey design and procedures, and data and site recording procedures.  Upon successful completion, participants are registered with the BC provincial government as a Certified RISC Technician, and receive a certificate signed and endorsed by the BC Archaeology Branch.

The BC Provincial Resources Information Standards Committee (RISC) is responsible for establishing standards for natural and cultural resources inventories, including the collection, storage, analysis, and interpretation and reporting of inventory data.

Each NRTG course includes free, lifetime admission. Enrol once - come back anytime.

NRTG partners with the BC Association of Professional Archaeologists (BCAPA) and its members to offer this program to communities throughout western Canada. 



Upon successful completion of this program, students will be able to: 

  • Describe how archaeological inventory projects are conducted in British Columbia

  • Conduct field orienteering and navigation

  • Interpret maps and plot locations

  • Identify and interpret environmental conditions and settings

  • Conduct standard data recording procedures

  • Utilize maps to accurately record site features and materials

  • Conduct a standard archaeological field survey

  • Identify archaeological sites, including; traditional use areas, and cultural features and materials (including culturally-modified trees)

  • Identify and apply the Heritage Conservation Act

  • Operate and maintain survey equipment effectively, efficiently and accurately

  • Identify natural and cultural forces that create and impact archaeological sites.

  • Identify unique sites and describe cultural materials and features

  • Conduct and record survey on surface collections.

  • Interpret and record field data onto an archaeological site form

  • Protect culturally-sensitive areas prior to and during resource development or extraction activities

  • Develop an awareness of Human Burial concerns and protocols

Course format:

This five-day (35-hour) RISC course includes both daily classroom and field training exercises and practicums.  This course is delivered during fair weather periods to avoid field conditions of snow, ice, frozen soil, hazardous or unsafe driving conditions.  The daily training format is typically an 8-hour day that may include travel to field sites, and a varied schedule given changing weather conditions. 

Day 1  

Morning:  In classroom.

  • Introductions

  • What is archaeology and what are cultural heritage values

  • Rules and respect

  • Field safety and communications

Afternoon: In classroom. 

  • Introduction to archaeological equipment, data and interpretation

  • Local cultural settings, local archaeological site types

  • Local elder or community member in class discussion of local cultural heritage values and sites

Day 2)

Morning: In classroom.

  • Review

  • Local paleo-environmental settings and archaeological site types

  • Community knowledge, field note documentation, archaeological site types, formation, disturbance, protection and mitigation

  • Archaeological site types, including Culturally Modified Trees (CMTs), and how best to record these sites in field books

Afternoon:   Archaeological site visit.  Introduction to field survey methods.

Day 3)

Morning: In classroom.

  • Review of course content to-date

  • Review of archaeological site visit.

  • Survey methods and field surveys

  • Keeping field records and map reading skills

Afternoon:   Archaeological site visit.  Using field survey methods.

Day 4)

Morning:  In classroom

  • Review of course content to-date

  • Finding and recording and archaeological site

  • Using the archaeological site form and mapping the site from your field notes and forms

Afternoon:  Archaeological site visit and field survey methods practicum.

Day 5)

Morning:  In classroom

  • Review of all topics from the week in preparation for in classroom written exam. Closed book.

  • Written exam.

Afternoon:  In field exam.

Course Customization:

This course can also be customized for an organization and/or community based on their needs.  In its standard format, this course is a five-day training program.   NRTG can deliver this program independently or combined with another NRTG training program. For instance, this course could be delivered along with our Cultural Resource Monitor Program,  Environmental Field Skills Certificate Program, or GPS - Technologies and Applications course(s), or any other NRTG training program. 

Please contact us with your ideas and needs, and we'll work with you to design and deliver a specialized training program that meets your needs. 

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