Taught course

Curating and Collections Management

Institution
Birkbeck, University of London · History of Art
Qualifications
PGCert

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Entry requirements

Our standard postgraduate entry requirement is a second-class honours degree (2:2 or above) from a UK university, or an equivalent international qualification.

We will review every postgraduate application to Birkbeck on its individual merits and your professional qualifications and/or relevant work experience will be taken into consideration positively. We actively support and encourage applications from mature learners.

Months of entry

October

Course content

The Postgraduate Certificate in Curating and Collections Management offers you a unique opportunity to gain practical skills in museum work and to better understand the issues facing curators and collections managers today. It will help you answer important questions such as:
  • How do you pitch a proposal for an exhibition?
  • How would you project manage this and who would need to be involved?
  • How would you organise a loan for an exhibition?
  • What are the different ways of cataloguing a museum object and why does the information you keep matter?
  • How would you store a sacred object, or something that was extremely fragile?

You will spend two intensive weeks (one per year) studying the foundational principles of curating and collections management, debating the challenges and opportunities of contemporary museums and gallery practice, and visiting London museums and galleries. You will listen to experts talking about their working practices, learn skills of documentation and work in groups to develop an exhibition.

This Postgraduate Certificate is suitable if you have a first degree and are interested in a vocational qualification, or as a refresher course if you are already working in a museum and gallery.

Highlights
  • In the most recent Research Excellence Framework (REF), Art and Design at Birkbeck achieved 100% for a research environment supporting world-leading and internationally excellent research.
  • Our location in Bloomsbury in central London is ideal for exploring some of the world's best architecture, galleries and museums, collections and art spaces, such as the British Library, British Museum, Sir John Soane's Museum, Foundling Museum, Wellcome Gallery, National Gallery, National Portrait Gallery, Tate Britain, Tate Modern and V&A.
  • The School of Arts offers a number of bursaries for postgraduate students.
  • The Department of History of Art has an international reputation for its innovative approaches to the history of art, visual culture and museum studies, and attracts a rich programme of visiting scholars and practitioners. It is home to the History and Theory of Photography Research Centre, the Architecture, Space and Society Centre, the Centre for Museum Cultures and the Vasari Research Centre. You will also have access to the Centre for Film and Visual Media. We have state-of-the art cinema and exhibition spaces, all housed in a historic building that was a former home to key members of the Bloomsbury Group, including the author Virginia Woolf and the artist Vanessa Bell. Birkbeck Library has an extensive collection of books and journals in art history and museum studies.
  • The Department hosts a range of events including information evenings for prospective students; the annual Murray Lecture, where speakers have included Gabriele Finaldi, Director of Tate Britain, and Neil McGregor, ex-Director of the British Museum; and exhibitions and displays at the Peltz Gallery, the School of Arts' purpose-built exhibition space. You are also welcome to attend other seminars and events across the School of Arts and at the Birkbeck Institute for the Humanities.
  • You will have the option to join our study trips, offered each spring. Cities visited in the last few years include Florence, Paris, Venice, Vienna, Rome, Berlin and Moscow.
  • The School of Arts is an official partner of the Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA) in London. Opportunities for students have included a year’s free membership of the ICA, private views, discounts on all talks and events, free members' screenings and £3 cinema tickets on Tuesdays, up to 25% off ICA Artists' Editions and a monthly e-newsletter.

Information for international students

If English is not your first language or you have not previously studied in English, our usual requirement is the equivalent of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic Test) score of 6.5, with not less than 6.0 in each of the sub-tests.

If you don't meet the minimum IELTS requirement, we offer pre-sessional English courses and foundation programmes to help you improve your English language skills and get your place at Birkbeck.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • PGCert
    part time
    24 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

Name
Student Advice Service
Email
studentadvice@bbk.ac.uk
Phone
+44 (0)20 3907 0700