MCH8504 : Caring for ‘Collections’ in the Museum/Gallery/Heritage Sector

Semester 1 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0


To familiarise students with issues, theories and practices related to caring for ‘collections’ in the Museum/Gallery/Heritage sector, with reference to natural, cultural, intangible and tangible material;
To provide an understanding of conventions, charters, policies, legislation and guidelines in relating to caring for ‘collections’ and linked to natural resources, cultural resources management; safeguarding intangible cultural heritage, preventative conservation in gallery and museum collections management;
To provide an understanding to approaches to caring for ‘collections’ in the Museum/Gallery/Heritage sector;
To provide an understanding to practices used in caring for ‘collections in the Museum/Gallery/Heritage sector; and,
To provide an understanding to planning and implementation needed for caring for ‘collections in the Museum/Gallery/Heritage sector.

Outline Of Syllabus

This module will provide students with the theoretical and practical knowledge and skills required for caring for Museum/Gallery/heritage ‘collections’, viewed in the broadest sense. For example, these ‘collections’ include intangible and tangible immovable and movable heritage, museum and artistic resources. Caring for these ‘collections’ may incorporate looking after and safeguarding: worldviews; knowledge systems; language; cultural expressions in music, song, dance, festivals, foodways; natural and cultural landscapes; historic rural and urban areas; archaeological sites; the historic build environment; museum earth and life sciences specimens; historical artifacts; photographs; archival material; artworks in the fine and decorative arts.

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion150:0050:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture121:0012:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading140:0040:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical52:0010:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching52:0010:00seminars
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesFieldwork12:002:00site visit
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study176:0076:00N/A
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Students will experience scheduled learning and teaching activities, however, the majority of their learning on this module comes from guided interdependent study. The scheduled time is mixed between one-hour lectures and two-hours small-group seminars or practical work, where the student is exposed to key knowledge and skills to facilitate the learning objectives. These latter activities typically are coordinated by programme area and allow students to work in smaller groups. The module leader offers weekly scheduled office hours (drop-in/surgery) during the semester this module is on offer.
A formal taught session (normally delivered to the whole cohort on a module) which consists largely of the exposition of theory, themes, methodologies and techniques.

Small group teaching
Small group sessions based on reading and discussion and sometimes on students’ presenting in seminar groups, workshops, and practical activities.

This broad category refers to independent student activity and covers the range from reading and preparation through to situations where students are required to work in groups without staff supervision or where students are required to undertake very specific pieces of work.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Report1M100Answer a report question (3500 words).
Formative Assessments
Description Semester When Set Comment
Oral Presentation1MFeedback provided during practical sessions
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

This module is designed to introduce students to the need for the effective care of collections, and to provide them with some basic practices tools to use in 'real life' Museum/Gallery/Heritage sector situations. The assignment, written in the form of a report, will test the knowledge and skills gained by setting scenarios that Collections Managers, Curators and heritage Managers in the Museum/Gallery/Heritage sector face on a daily basis. The report will allow students to build up specialist knowledge relevant to their chosen MA programme.

Reading Lists