This established programme shares best practice and expertise in various aspects of museum studies, cultural management, exhibition practice and care of collections. The modules draw upon the expectations of the museum standards programmes in UK and Ireland and present these within an international context. Lectures include points of discussion on key issues concerning the museum profession globally. Tutors are either lecturers in Ulster University or senior staff in the museum sector.
In developing the Museum Practice and Management programme we worked closely with the Heritage Council, and the course was designed to reflect the Museum Standards Programme Ireland.
There are four modules in the taught part of the programme:
Museums and Culture: Policies and Values
CUS 816 (30 credits)
This module considers the meaning, purposes and impact of museums. It looks at the value of objects, histories of museums as well as issues in relation to governance, museum ethics, social policies and display. It draws on key debates in the museum sector both nationally and internationally and encourages students to reflect upon the potential of museums.
Management and Strategy for the Museum
CUS 817 (30 credits)
Issues of management, marketing, finance and strategic planning are core to this module. Module content explores key thinking and principles in these areas and applies them to the museum sector.
Communication and Learning in Museums
CUS 818 (30 credits)
The focus of this module is museum communication through exhibition development and learning policies. Units relating to exhibitions focus on the importance of display, writing museum text and evaluation. Lectures also reflect upon contemporary learning theories, how these might be applied in museums, and writing an education policy for a museum. Consideration is also given to engaging lifelong learners and employing new media in museums.
Collections Care and Management
CUS 819 (30 credits)
Collections are the basis on which most museum work is developed. This module considers how to make collection management a strategic part of a museum service. It considers the development of standards and accreditation, issues relating to acquisition and disposal of collections as well as documentation. Lectures relating to the care of collections consider preventive conservation; care of collections; storage; object handling; movement of collections; disaster planning; and the broader context of collections care.
This is an entirely online programme, with no requirement to attend the Ulster University. However, there is an annual calendar of museum events in Ireland which many students attend and the tutors use as an opportunity to informally meet with students.
Work placement / study abroad
On request, we work with students and local museums or heritage properties to arrange work placements.
The majority of the students on this programme are working the museum or related sectors. Often these students want to learn more about museum practice and theory. Others are keen to enter the sector and the programme provides invaluable learning. Such students gain a lot from discussion with their peers and tutors. In addition, the Course Director can advise you on finding a work placement in a museum.