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Certificate in Museum Studies

Graduate students in the History of Art PhD program may apply to the Museum Studies Program. This is an interdisciplinary certificate program involving 18 credit hours of study. Students generally apply to the program during their first year of graduate study. The Museum Studies Program requirements include a year-long two-semester proseminar, six credit hours of cognate courses (400-level and above), and six credit hours of practical engagement (usually involving internships, independent study, or research at institutions that may be located virtually anywhere in the world). Six of the Museum Studies 18 credit hours may be ‘double-counted’ with coursework undertaken for the History of Art degree, as long as they are not also double-counted in another program. The remaining twelve credit hours (normally four courses) are therefore taken in addition to the History of Art degree requirements. While History of Art coursework must be completed by the semester of the preliminary exams (by the end of the third year), the Museum Studies credit hours can be fulfilled within the longer degree period, but must be completed within five years of entering the certificate program.
In order to avoid carrying too heavy a course load during the pre-candidacy period of study, the following strategies are recommended for History of Art graduate students enrolled in the Museum Studies Program.

  • Students can ‘double-count’ the Museum Studies proseminar taken during their second year as their two required History of Art cognate courses
  • Alternatively students can ‘double-count’ two of their History of Art required departmental or cognate courses as the Museum Studies cognate courses
  • Special arrangements can be made for students taking their additional six-credit hours of Museum Studies coursework (equivalent to two seminar courses) during post-candidacy periods when their History of Art coursework is lighter – especially during the winter semester of the third year following preliminary exams (this is subject to the permission of the Director of Graduate Studies) and during the fall semester of their fourth year, if they are still in residence.
  • Students can use the Spring/Summer semesters and post-candidacy period to fulfill some of the six credit hours of practical engagement for the Museum Studies Program.