Museum Studies Course Descriptions

MUSE 501 INTRODUCTION TO MUSEOLOGY        3 credit hours

This core course provides students with an overview of Museology, the branch of knowledge concerned with the study of the purpose and organization of museums. Students will learn about the historic and contemporary classification of various types of museums (e.g. history, art, zoos, botanical gardens, etc.), their structure and organization, and their roles in society. Students will also explore career options in the museum field, including job titles, descriptions and requirements.

MUSE 504 COLLECTIONS MANAGEMENT                    3 credit hours

This core course provides students with the necessary skills to develop a collections management plan based on the mission of the institution; accessioning and de-accessioning; technical aspects of handling, storing and exhibiting a variety of materials, including archival and registration procedures, writing condition reports, crating and shipping artifacts, in-house conservation methods, and subcontracting trained conservators.

MUSE 505 MUSEUMS AND COMMUNITIES                 3 credit hours

This core course examines ways in which contemporary museums, both public and private, identify and serve their respective communities through exhibitions, educational programming, and publications. Students will use case studies to establish best practices for utilizing museum resources.

MUSE 507 WRITING FOR RESEARCH IN MUSEUMS           3 credit hours

This core course develops proficiency in the techniques of writing precise summaries, critiques, and synopses of published Museology related literature. By the completion of the course, students will acquire the skills to write a literature review related to museum studies. Mastery of professional writing for Museology will be measured through the preparation of a portfolio of practical writing exercises samples that include art and artifact critiques, exhibition and installation critiques, text panels, didactic labels and short articles suitable for publication.

MUSE 610 MUSEUM EDUCATION                  3 credit hours

This elective course is an exploration of the learning process that takes place in museums. Through an overview and evaluation of educational services in museums, students will examine the planning and implementation of educational programs for museum visitors. Additional topics may include: museum education as a profession, ethics, development and implementation of evaluation tools, including formative evaluation of exhibits, audience research, literacy and language, and requirements of visitors with special needs.

MUSE 615 MUSEUM CURATORSHIP            3 credit hours

This elective course explores the role of a curator, or caretaker of a collection. At the end of the course, students will be able to demonstrate functional knowledge of maintaining and interpreting collections, acquisition policies, cataloging, conducting research, writing publications and loaning objects to other museums.

MUSE 620 EXHIBITION DESIGN                 3 credit hours

In this elective course, students apply a team approach to exhibition development, similar to those used in most mid-size to large museums. Students will apply knowledge and skills gained to write a comprehensive proposal for a museum exhibition. This proposal will include a detailed budget, expanded checklist, wall text, didactic labels, floor plan, educational programming, public programming and a media kit.

MUSE 625A. INTERNSHIP IN MUSEUM WORK    3 credit hours

This required course is a minimum 100-hour, supervised internship at a pre-approved museum. The internship may be taken during the fall, spring or summer, and requires approval of the student's advisor, program director and completion of the SUNO Student Affiliation Agreement. This course may be repeated once for an additional three (3) credit hours. Open to degree candidates only.

MUSE 625B INTERNSHIP IN MUSEUM WORK      3 credit hours

This elective course is a 100-hour, supervised internship at a pre-approved museum. The internship may be taken during the fall, spring or summer, and requires approval of the student's advisor, program director and completion of the SUNO Student Affiliation Agreement.

MUSE 635 HISTORY OF WORLD ART        3 credit hours

This course is an overview of the art of the world. It provides the students with an understanding of the original civilizations and their influence on the development of art and architecture worldwide down to the present.

MUSE 640 HISTORY OF ART OF THE AFRICAN DIASPORA                3 credit hours

Students trace the development of the visual arts, festivals, and celebrations, on the continent of Africa and their influence on the development of culture worldwide, and contemporary culture in modern Africa and its Diaspora.

MUSE 650 MUSEUM GOVERNANCE AND ADMINISTRATION           3 credit hours

This elective course examines the management of a variety of museums. Topics will include nonprofit and for profit board governance, trust vs. Federal/public funds, board-director-staff relationships, writing effective mission statements, developing project budgets, reading financial statements, fundraising, grant writing and marketing.

MUSE 655 TOPICAL STUDIES IN AFRICAN ART                     3 credit hours

Students trace the historical development of the visual arts on the continent of Africa and explore their contextual significance and influence on Contemporary Culture in Modern Africa. This course addresses sculpture; painting, pottery, textiles, architecture, installation arts, human adornment and performance are approached on the basis of style, iconography and function, and in relation to religious, political, market and daily contexts. This course examines the ways in which “Africa” has been conceived and deconstructs the assumptions shaping each approach. The processes (and problems) of collecting and displaying African art will be addressed throughout the course.

MUSE 660 INTERNATIONAL MUSEUMS AND CULTURES 3 credit hours

This course explores the work of international museums in the United States and abroad. The course is divided into three phases. The first phase involves an intensive four weeks of class with readings and rigorous discussions about international museums and cultures.  The second phase requires students to participate in a short (10 to 15 days) group trip led by a faculty member which will entail fieldwork research and visits to museums, cultural organizations, libraries, and historical sites.  The third phase consists of structured debriefing sessions to interpret data and collected materials.  (Prerequisites:  Two 500 level courses or the instructor’s permission).

MUSE 695 INDEPENDENT RESEARCH       3 credit hours

This elective course consists of a supervised, in-depth examination through individual research on a particular topic selected and conducted by the student in consultation with a faculty advisor. Independent study may not be used in place of a core course or a required course, and when used as an elective, prior approval from the advisor and program director is required for enrollment. Open to degree candidates only.

MUSE 700A/MUSE 700B MASTER'S PROJECT       3 credit hours

This program requirement (option one) consists of the development and installation of an exhibition. Each degree candidate is required to conduct original research, prepare an annotated bibliography, and write a proposal, consisting of an exhibit script, wall text, labels, gallery guide, and press kit. The project advisor must be a full time faculty member and the final project must be pre-approved by the advisor and program director. This course may be repeated once as MUSE 700B for an additional three (3) credit hours.

MUSE 705A/MUSE 705B MASTER'S THESIS           3 credit hours

This program requirement (option two) consists of writing a master's thesis. Each degree candidate is required to conduct original research, prepare an annotated bibliography, and write a qualifying paper. The thesis advisor must be a full time faculty member and the final project must be pre-approved by the program director. This course may be repeated once as MUSE 705B for an additional three (3) credit hours.

DID YOU KNOW?

Timolynn Sams ('98) was selected by the Utne Reader as one of their 2008 "50 Visionaries Who Are Changing Your World."