Interdisciplinary in nature, the Museum Studies Minor provides students with the academic foundation and practical experience necessary for entrance into museum careers or related graduate studies. The curriculum explores the manner in which museums are organized and operate and how they care for and interpret their collections, serve their audiences, respond to new technologies, and grapple with complex legal and ethical issues unique to their disciplines. Combining theory with practice, the curriculum incorporates classroom study and directed research with practical experiences in the form of field trips, group projects, and internships.
The minor incorporates the disciplines of American studies, anthropology, art and art history, classics, historic preservation, and history, from which students may select their own concentration preference. The minor is open to students from any discipline in the arts and sciences, education, or business colleges at UMW. The University’s three museums support this minor with internship opportunities. The museum field is a rapidly expanding and vital part of society. The American Association of Museums estimates there are 17,500 museums currently operating in the United States, generating a demand for highly trained museum professionals.
Students interested in enrolling in the minor must contact the chair of the Department of History and American Studies for additional details.
Requirements for Museum Studies Minor
Eighteen (18) credits to include: ARTH 315 or HISP 200; ARTH 317 or HISP 463; Internship: 499 (minimum 3 credits, must be approved by the internship sponsor and chair of the Museum Studies Committee); 9 elective credits from among ANTH 309, 341, 342; CLAS 380; HISP 208, 303, 320; HIST 428; special topics courses from Anthropology, Art History, Classics, Historic Preservation, and History from the approved list; and, ARTH 317 or HISP 463 if not used to satisfy one of the requirements above.
One 3-credit Individual Study course may be substituted for one of the elective courses with the approval of the instructor and chair of the Museum Studies Committee. An additional 3 credits of internship may be substituted for one elective course listed above.
Students should contact the chair of the Department of History and American Studies regarding which special topics courses are approved to count towards this minor.