Undergraduate Certificate in Museum Studies

Program Description

Museum Studies is an interdisciplinary program that serves multiple departments in the Colleges of Liberal Arts & Sciences, Fine and Applied Arts, and Education, and the School of Information Sciences. It is housed in the Department of Anthropology. The program offers a graduate minor in museum studies, effective Fall 2009. It also offers an undergraduate curriculum and serves as an informal hub of museum-related research on campus.

Museum Studies courses are offered each fall and spring term. The full range of courses is described below. Please check the university course information pages to see which courses are available for a specific term. If you become aware of other course offerings relevant to museum studies, please contact us at museumstudies@illinois.edu.

The Certificate in Museum Studies is designed for undergraduates in Liberal Arts & Sciences, Fine & Applied Arts, Information Science, or Education who wish to complement their degree program with interdisciplinary study in museum theory and practice. The certificate is designed to provide students with a working knowledge of museum institutions and operations and promotes museum-related perspectives and skill sets that cross-cut disciplines.

This program is a total of 15 Credit Hours. 


Program Requirements

  • MUSE 200: Introduction to Museums  (3 Credit Hours)                                                                                    
  • ANTH 462: Museum Theory and Practice (cross-lists as ARTH 462/LA 472) (3 Credit Hours)              
  • Three elective courses from the approved list (9 Credit Hours)                                                                      
  • Completion of an appropriate museum internship ( with or without course credit)

The student’s course plan must be approved by the Museum Studies office and must include at least nine hours of 300- or 400-level coursework.  A minimum grade point average of 2.50 within the course plan is required in order for a certificate to be issued.  The certificate will not appear on a student’s transcript, although all applicable coursework will be listed.  The certificate generally takes two years to complete based on current cycles of elective offerings.


Program Courses for Undergraduate Students

  • MUSE 200 Introduction to Museums
  • MUSE 389 Seminar in Museum Studies
  • MUSE 390 Museum Internship
  •  ANTH 250/MUSE 250 The World through Museums
  • ANTH 420 Case Studies Global Heritage
  • ANTH 460/LA 460/RST 459 Heritage Management
  • ANTH 462/ARTH 462/LA 472 Museum Theory and Practice
  • ARTE 260 Museums in Action
  • ARTE 475 Art Exhibition Practice
  • ARTH 450 Institutional Critique
  • ARTH 460 Museum Management
  • HIST 314 Material Culture
  • HIST 358 History Harvest: Collaborative Digital Public History
  • HIST 386 Public History
  • HIST 391 Oral History Methods
  • IS 426 Museum Informatics
  • IS 493 Topics in Cultural Heritage, Collection Management, & Preservation
  • RST 350 Tourism and Culture
  • THEA 432 Lighting for Non-Theatrical Spaces & Styles
  • THEA 457 Model Making for the Stage
  •  Other special topics and seminar courses focused specifically on museums may be counted through a petition process


Program Contact Information

Dr. Susan Frankenberg, Museum Studies Program Coordinator
Department of Anthropology
University of Illinois at Urbana‐Champaign
109 Davenport Hall (MC‐148)
607 Mathews Ave.
Urbana, IL 61801
Phone: 217/244‐1984
E‐mail: museumstudies@illinois.edu OR sfranken@illinois.edu