Masters degrees in Heritage Studies equip postgraduates with the skills to critically examine and observe tangible and intangible heritage across the world. These include, but are not limited to: objects, practices, traditions, and social and cultural movements.
Related subjects include Social History, World History and Modern History. Entry requirements usually include a relevant undergraduate degree such as History, English Literature, Archaeology or Cultural Studies.
Heritage studies is a term which covers a broad range of scholarly activities, from oral history research to archiving, curating to public speaking.
Courses in this field are generally vocational in kind, with work placements or research projects in conjunction with institutions such as museums or archives being a typical component.
There are many areas for you to specialise in within this field, whether that be the local history of the area in which you study, or a broader analysis of the traditions of a given culture or race.
Careers in this field are extremely varied, with traditional roles including archiving and curating, academia or independent research, and publishing. Other roles may include marketing, roles in the media such as journalism and broadcasting, and public relations.
Through combining arts management with heritage studies, students will develop a sophisticated understanding of the changing political, policy and practice contexts within which the arts and heritage sectors operate today.
Core modules explore the nature of heritage and how meanings of objects, artworks and buildings change in different contexts. You will examine the challenges faced by arts managers and cultural leaders, and the changes that have led some museums to move towards the role of the ‘manager’ rather than the ‘curator’.
You will choose from optional modules to tailor your degree to your interests or career plans – including the opportunity to undertake a work placement or consultancy project role in either arts management or heritage. Previous students have undertaken placements focused on collections, digitisation work, digital interpretation and community engagement.
Supported by our Centre for Critical Studies in Museums, Galleries and Heritage, you will benefit from our partnerships with major arts and cultural organisations to find out what it means to work in this challenging sector.
You will study in the heart of a cultural hub for this diverse and vibrant region. Leeds is home to a wide variety of world-leading and innovative arts and heritage organisations, from the Royal Armouries, Opera North, West Yorkshire Playhouse and Northern Ballet through to nine council-run museums, galleries and heritage sites and many contemporary art spaces.
We are also close to everything the rest of Yorkshire has to offer, from The Hepworth Wakefield to the National Science and Media Museum, Yorkshire Sculpture Park and the Brontë Parsonage Museum. We have close links with many of these cultural institutions to support your practical learning.
This exciting programme has been developed in close collaboration with the School of Performance and Cultural Industries and allows students to undertake core and optional courses in both Schools. Students become members of the Centre for Critical Studies in Museums, Galleries and Heritage and enjoy the opportunities that membership offers.
All MA students in the School take two core modules.
In Arts Management and Cultural Leadership, students will examine theoretical concepts in the emerging field of arts management and the challenges faced by arts managers and cultural leaders. Dialogue with our arts and cultural partners will give an insight into the exciting possibilities opened up by bringing theory and practice together. Students can deepen their learning in this area through optional modules that explore a variety of key issues, such as audience engagement and impact, cultural entrepreneurship, and contemporary cultural strategies, technologies and media.
In Heritage Studies: Key Words, students will develop a critical exploration of heritage through the ways in which people have sought to preserve, understand and pass on their cultures. This is underpinned through combining a sustained theoretical engagement with key ideas which animate heritage – place, community, memory, archive, future – with embedded skills development in heritage and museum interpretative and curatorial practice (which are a core set of sector skills). Students can build on these skills through optional modules such as exploring anthropology and representation, cultural memory and material culture.
Through our Advanced Research Skills modules, students are equipped to undertake assessments and ultimately develop their own research project. The modules build to a symposium in Semester 2 where students present initial research findings towards a dissertation on a research topic of interest.
In addition, students choose from a range of optional modules offered by the School of Fine Art, History of Art and Cultural Studies and the School of Performance and Cultural Industries. These include the opportunity to complete a placement or consultancy project role in either arts management or heritage. Previous students have undertaken placements focused on collections, digitisation work, digital interpretation and community engagement.
We use a range of teaching and learning methods to allow students to benefit from the expertise of our staff. These include weekly seminars, group learning sessions, tutorials and lectures.
Students will also benefit from the expertise of visiting speakers, visits off campus and practical experience. Independent study is also vital to this course, allowing students to develop individual skills and prepare for taught sessions
We use a range of teaching and learning methods to help you benefit from the expertise of our staff. These include weekly seminars, group learning sessions, tutorials and lectures. You’ll also benefit from the expertise of visiting speakers, visits off campus and practical experience. Independent study is also vital to this programme, allowing you to develop your individual skills and prepare for taught sessions.
Depending on the modules you choose, you may experience a range of different assessment methods. These usually include essays of around 7,000 words, individual and group presentations, in-course assessment and project work. You may also be asked to complete a reflective log for your projects, allowing you to look back and critically assess your own practice.
All students have a choice of two optional modules. A number of these modules have a work or enterprise component to gain first-hand experience of contemporary museum and gallery practice. If you have a particular ambition in mind for a work placement, we try to find a role that suits you.
This well-established programme at the Ulster University is delivered through the School of Creative Arts and Technologies and is taught on the Belfast campus. It has many links with the museum and heritage profession both north and south and students have the advantage of meeting with practitioners through lectures and visits. Graduates have been successful in securing positions in the museum and heritage sectors both in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. To support your learning, we arrange a placement for all students in a local museum or heritage site.
The degree programme has been designed for individuals seeking further career development in the heritage and museum sectors, as well for graduates of Art and Design, Art History, Geography, History, Archaeology, Anthropology, Education, Sociology and allied disciplines, who wish to develop their research interests in these fields.
Key areas of investigation in this MA include
Modules have been designed to reflect innovative and current research in these areas and will equip both graduates and those already working in the heritage sectors with the appropriate skills for further academic and professional development.
The MA requires successful completion of five taught modules and one research module.
MA Research Dissertation
If you choose not to do the research dissertation you may exit with a PGD, postgraduate diploma.
The MA Cultural Heritage and Museum Studies is delivered at the York Street Campus in Belfast to both full and part-time students.
Your Course Director is Elizabeth Crooke, Professor of Heritage and Museum Studies at Ulster University. Elizabeth works with a team of expert and experienced tutors to deliver this programme. In September 2015 Elizabeth was elected Chairperson of Board of Directors Northern Ireland Museums Council. Elizabeth is currently a member of the Museum Standards Programme Advisory Committee of the Heritage Council (Ireland) and member of the Board of Directors Irish Museums Association.
This course is taught on the Belfast campus.
Full-time students attend lectures and seminars two days a week (typically Tuesday and Thursday) and Part-time students one day a week (typically a Thursday in the first year and a Tuesday in the second year).
We support all students in finding a work placement, which they complete alongside their studies.Students have had placements at National Museums Northern Ireland, local museums, Linen Hall Library, PRONI and the National Trust.
This programme was introduced in 2001 and since that time our graduates have pursued careers in museums, exhibition design, archives, the cultural sector and further education. Alumni from the programme now form a vibrant community and are having a positive impact on the sector.
The areas graduates have gone on to include:
The Cultural Heritage Studies program offers an interdepartmental and interdisciplinary MA program intended to educate individuals who wish to become heritage experts and practitioners. It is focused on developing aptitudes for the critical assessment of tangible and intangible cultural heritage as well as environmental heritage connected to human-nature interactions.
The program presents a variety of theoretical and methodological approaches with a strong emphasis on practical knowledge and skills. It offers two streams: Academic Research and Protection of Cultural Heritage, and Cultural Heritage Management and Policy.
The program attracts students from a variety of related fields such as history, art history, archaeology, ethnography, anthropology, architecture, landscape design, monument protection, environmental science and management studies.
The department provides intellectually challenging comparative and multidisciplinary postgraduate education on all aspects of the history and culture of the period between 300 and 1600 C.E. International faculty members cover Central and Western Europe as well as the Byzantine, Slavic, Jewish, Arab and Ottoman worlds.
Graduates will be prepared to work at various levels in cultural heritage and resource research, protection and management. Future professionals might include architects, art historians, archaeologists, cultural anthropologists, environmental professionals, museum curators, archivists, librarians, conservators of artifacts and monuments, policy and management experts.
CEU is committed to attracting talented students and scholars from around the world, and provides generous scholarships available to accepted students from any country. In 2016-2017, 84% of CEU students received financial aid, ranging from tuition awards to scholarships with stipends and housing. Learn more about how to fund your studies at http://www.ceu.edu/financialaid.
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