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Interdisciplinary Graduate Certificate in Museum Studies

museum studies heading

The Interdisciplinary Graduate Certificate Program in Museum Studies at the University of Georgia uses a broad understanding of museums, practical experience in museum work, and the role of museums. The program prepares students for museum careers by adding specific, museum-based instruction to existing departmental academic studies. Students achieve the capacity to investigate and accomplish objectives in the museum field through discipline-based knowledge, museum theory, and experiential learning. The instructors and courses offered through this program are interdisciplinary, representing a range of departments across campus.

Museums by their very nature are interdisciplinary. Fields as diverse as biology, history, horticulture, nonprofit management, education, English, journalism, and collection studies merge in museums and cultural institutions that collect, preserve, exhibit, and interpret objects. The list of courses in the curriculum section of this proposal reflects the multifaceted program of the Museum Studies certificate.

ObjectivesUGA material culture student Sarah Refuss with antique quilt

  • To prepare students for a variety of careers in museums and museum-related fields through offering a range of concentrations.
  • To foster in students the critical thinking, analytical, and interpretive skills necessary for innovative inquiry and design in museums and museum-related fields through experiential learning opportunities.
  • To investigate museology through discipline-based knowledge, museum theory, and hands-on experiences.
  • To cultivate in students an understanding and appreciation of the value of museums and cultural institutions within the United States and internationally.
  • To provide students with an opportunity to augment their studies through existing resources on campus due to the interdisciplinary nature of museology.

Program Requirements

Five 3-credit courses, plus a one-credit capstone course equaling 16 hours of credit are required to complete the certificate program of study.  

  • Three courses are required of all students enrolled in the certificate program: FCID 7010 Introduction to Museum Studies (3 credits), FCID 7015 Museum Internship (3 credits), and FCID 7020 (Proposed) Museum Studies Capstone (1 credit). These foundations courses make up 7 of the 16 hours of credit necessary to complete the certificate program.
  • The remaining 9 hours will be selected from the courses listed below and must come from at least two different disciplines.
  • FCID 7010 Introduction to Museum Studies, FCID 7015 Museum Internship and FCID 70XX (Proposed) Museum Studies Capstone are new courses; all other aspects of the proposed curriculum are already offered at UGA.

The following courses constitute course offerings for the certificate:

Foundations courses (6 hours. Required)

  • FCID 7010. 3 hours. Introduction to Museum Studies: Taught by faculty affiliated with the certificate program, this course provides an introduction to museums as important cultural sites. Through discussion, readings, written assignments, on-campus field trips, and guest lecturers, students will examine different types of museums, responsibilities of staff, and the challenges and issues encountered in entering the field.
  • FCID 7015. 3 hours. Museum Internship: One of the requirements of the certificate in Museum Studies is the completion of a museum internship. Opportunities for internships in collections care, research, education, communications, exhibition development, public programming, and administration will be available at the Georgia Museum of Art, the State Botanical Garden of Georgia, Special Collections Libraries, the Georgia Museum of Natural History, and through institutions affiliated with UGA study-abroad and field study programs. In addition, arrangements may be made for internships at other institutions upon approval of the director of the program, including those obtained through study-abroad programs.

All internships will require at least 105 hours during the semester. It is the responsibility of the student to apply for and obtain the internship position. Internships will include opportunities for reflection about the experience through a journal or project and final documentation of their work in the field. Each internship requires approval by the director of the certificate program and completion of an internship approval form.

A relevant museum internship within another department may be substituted for FCID 7015 with prior approval of the director of the certificate program.

Georgia Museum of art


An additional 9 credit hours will come from the list below and other new related courses to be added. Elelctives must be chosen from at least two different areas (may not be of the same discipline). Special topics, directed readings, and thesis courses that focus on an aspect of museum studies may also be included, subject to the approval of the director of the Interdisciplinary Graduate Certificate program in Museum Studies. Some courses are open only to majors in the department.


  • ANTH(BIOL)(ECOL)(ENTO)(PBIO) 6260-6260L. 4 hours. (3 hours lecture + 1 hours lab per week). Natural History Collections Management
    • Prerequisite: Permission of department
  • ARED 6010. 3 hours. Art Criticism and Aesthetic Understanding
  • ARED 7500. 3 hours. Introduction to Museum Education
    • Prerequisite:    Permission of department
  • ARED 7510. 3 hours. Engaging Art Museum Audiences as Student Docents
  • ARHI 6420. 3 hours. American Art of the Fin de Siècle 1876-1913
  • ARHI 6440. 3 hours. American Modernism 1900-1946: Alfred Stieglitz's America
  • ARHI 6580. 3 hours. Postmodern Visual Culture
  • ARHI 6910. 3 hours. Topics in Renaissance and Baroque Art: Drawings
  • EDES 6610. 3 hours. Vernacular Architecture
  • EDES 6630. 3 hours. Twentieth Century Architecture
  • HIPR 6000. 3 hours. 2 hours lecture and 2 hours lab per week. Introduction to Historic Preservation
  •  HIPR 6072. 3 hours. Issues in International Heritage Conservation
  • HIPR 6100 3 hours. Cultural Resource Assessment
  • HIPR 6160. 3 hours. Public History and Technology
  • HIPR 6030. 3 hours. Principles and Practice of Preservation
  • HIPR 6100. 3 hours. Cultural Resource Assessment
    • Prerequisite:    HIPR 4000/6000
  • HIPR 6120. 3 hours. Historic Site Interpretation
  • HIST 6025 American Material Culture
  • HIST 6026. 3 hours. Public History in Washington, DC
  • HIST 6027. 3 hours. American Museums, Parks, and Monuments
  • HIST 6760. 3 hours. Hands on Public History
  • HIST 8770. 3 hours. Colloquium in Public History
  • LAND 6620 Evolution of American Architecture
  • TXMI 6370. 3 hours. History of Interior Design and Architecture 1850-present 
  • TXMI 7820. 3 hours. Museum Issues in Historic Clothing and Textiles
    • Graduate Prerequisite: TXMI 4290/6290 or permission of department

FCID 7020. 1 hour.  Required. Museum Studies Capstone. Through workshops and lectures students will prepare for the museum job market. In addition, students are required to submit an example of their professional work in the field.

UGA student waving the UGA flag at the SmithsonianEligibility and Certificate Program Application

The Interdisciplinary Graduate Certificate in Museum Studies is open to all currently enrolled graduate students, as well as students who possess a graduate degree and apply through Graduate Admissions as non-degree seeking students. Students will submit an application form signed by their advisor and the certificate director, plus a proposed program of study. Students will meet with the Director of the certificate as they progress through the program, and those in need of additional support will receive personalized advisement.

Admissions (for non-UGA students only)

Students who possess a graduate* degree and apply through Graduate Admissions as non-degree seeking students should select the program option non-degree General Studies, and select the Museum Studies Graduate Certificate Program option on the admissions application. The following materials will be required along with the graduate application and should be uploaded there when you apply.**

  • 2 recommendations
  • transcripts required by graduate admissions
  • resume or CV
  • statement of purpose

*Post-Baccalaureate:  Students who have earned a bachelor's degree from another institution, who have not attended UGA before, and who wish to take undergraduate classes at UGA but not to earn another undergraduate degree.

**Please submit materials at the graduate application site and not directly to the department.


Certificate Title: Interdisciplinary Certificate Program in Museum Studies

Director:   Dr. Akela Reason,  

School/College: Franklin College of Arts and Sciences

Department/Division: History

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