Yes, that’s right: free. The only other online program in archaeology I know of is the University of Leicester’s distance learning courses, and they’re both far more complex — book purchases, homework and final exams are involved — and far from free.
National Park Service Archeology Program, however, is easily accessible, entirely online, limited in scope to the ways and means of caring for archaeological collections, aka curating.
Much more broadly, this technical assistance is designed for the global archeological community — professional archeologists (e.g., university professors, CRM principal investigators and their staff, federal, tribal, and state agency staff), graduate students, upper level college students, and others concerned about archeological collections — who are rarely taught this material in formal educational settings. Because “Managing Archeological Collections” is created for primary access and use via the Internet, “global” is a key word here.
Cool, huh? Needless to say, I’m taking it. And even more needless to say, I’ll post all about it, especially the ethics sections. I have high hopes that a program by the NPS will take a firm stance on provenance issues, given how often looters target national parks for devastation in the name of profit.