Learning Goals

Minors in museums and society:

  • Develop a rich understanding of a range of museum types and the issues and ideas that inform their activities in both the past and present
  • Build their knowledge of the social contexts surrounding the collection, preservation, circulation, and consumption of material culture, including the ways in which things accrue and/or change meaning over time as part of new contexts and collections
  • Acquire the skills necessary to be critical interpreters of museums as institutions that both shape and are shaped by the societies and events of which they are a part
  • Learn how to locate and evaluate a wide range of primary source types, with special attention paid to those of particular relevance to the history, practice, and reception of museums and heritage sites including but not limited to criticism, visual display, and the taxonomies of collections
  • Develop skills in interdisciplinary research, learning how to find and read critical scholarship on museums and material culture in a wide range of fields
  • Broaden their view of their home discipline by attending to the ways in which museums intersect with historical structures of knowledge, and by pursuing their academic work in thoughtful engagement with the public
  • Learn how to mobilize objects and collections to understand, interpret, and present culture, the past, and/or science
  • Develop competence working with primary material sources, including visual analysis, technical examination, and archival research
  • Gain experience in collaborative work done under professional conditions, with a public purpose and to a deadline
  • Develop competence in communicating complex ideas effectively to diverse audiences in a wide variety of public formats (e.g., oral presentations, research posters, interpretive signage, exhibitions, web-based interactives).