PAAC Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How do I join PAAC?

Joining PAAC is simple! Navigate to our PAAC Program Introduction to find the online PAAC Candidate Application form. Completion of this form will add you to an email distribution list where all PAAC information will be sent. A Class Fee may be required when you enroll for some PAAC classes, but is not due with the PAAC Candidate Application. 

I have taken PAAC classes in the past, do I still have to complete a new PAAC Candidate Application form?

Yes. Due to the restructuring, all PAAC participants (new and veteran) are asked to complete a PAAC Candidate Application form online. Completion of this form will add you to an email distribution list where all PAAC information will be sent. Additionally, completion of the application will inform the PAAC State Coordinator if you have taken PAAC classes in the past so that your credits can be transferred over to the restructured certification program. 

How do I enroll in a class?

Check out our Class Offerings to learn about upcoming classes and to register for a class. You can also contact your Local PAAC Coordinator for more information. 

How much do classes cost?

Some PAAC classes may require a Class Fee due at the time of registration. The amount may vary from class to class, but is typically less than $20 per participant.

How can I find out about classes offered in my area?

Check out our Class Offerings online or contact your Local PAAC Coordinator for information about classes offered in-person in your area. Many of our classes are now offered in a hybrid format or online only. 

Are PAAC course materials available in advance?

Course materials will be made available at each class only to registered participants. Course bibliographies and materials from previous PAAC classes may be found at Class Offerings or by contacting your Local PAAC Coordinator.

Do I have to be a member of the Colorado Archaeological Society (CAS) or History Colorado (HC) to join PAAC?

Membership in these or any other organization is not required. Anyone interested is welcome to join PAAC! Visit our PAAC Home Page for more information. 

Do I get to dig or do other field work in PAAC?

Archaeological excavation (a "dig") is not a formal part of PAAC training. However, PAAC Field Experience classes offer participants the opportunity to learn about archaeological field methods such as pedestrian survey and excavation. PAAC participants will be placed on an email distribution list and notified of ongoing and future volunteer opportunities that may involve professionally supervised archaeological excavation, but are not formally associated with the PAAC certification program. Check out our Class Information for more information. 

Is PAAC class credit transferable to college/university programs?

No. PAAC offers participants the opportunity to obtain differing levels of expertise outside of an academic degree program. PAAC complements but does not replace existing university and governmental training programs. 

What will a PAAC certificate do for me?

The PAAC program is designed to build a community of individuals trained to help record, preserve, and serve as responsible stewards of and advocates for cultural resources in Colorado. PAAC certification is a formal recognition of the achievement of differing levels of technical training. It is not a substitute for a degree from an accredited academic institution, not is it a license to dig, collect artifacts, or perform other unsupervised archaeological tasks. PAAC participants are often welcome to participate in ongoing professionally supervised projects as volunteers, field assistants and laboratory assistants. 

Is it okay to collect artifacts?

Unauthorized collection of cultural resources on public land is illegal. Unauthorized collection of cultural resources on private lands without the explicit permission of the landowner is likewise illegal. Unauthorized, undocumented collection of cultural resources is always destructive, resulting in a loss of irreplaceable cultural information, and is a violation of the PAAC Code of Ethics. 

Contact the PAAC State Coordinator with any additional questions. 

PAAC State Coordinator
Sarah A. Allaun
Assistant State Archaeologist | Office of the State Archaeologist of Colorado
303-866-5746 |


Explore the website to learn about PAAC!

Program Introduction
Learn more about the PAAC program!
Code of Ethics
All PAAC participants must abide by the Code of Ethics
Certification Information
Learn about the restructured PAAC certification


Class Information
Learn about the ways in which PAAC participants engage with archaeology


Class Offerings
Check out our current and past class offerings & Register for PAAC classes!
Local PAAC Coordinators
Learn about PAAC near you & connect with PAAC Coordinators in your area


Have any questions?