This degree scheme will offer students the opportunity to combine practical and theoretical training in curating and managing museum projects and exhibitions. It aims to familiarize students with basic principles of professional good practice both in management and in museum and gallery work, while enabling them to develop the skills and self-reliance needed to undertake an independent project. These skills include a capacity for critical inquiry and argument, imaginative understanding, written, spoken and visual interpretation, communication and presentation, working in a team, competence in project and financial management. The acquisition of these skills will not only stand students in good stead for more specialised museum and gallery careers but will enhance their opportunities for employment in a wide range of other professions. At the same time, the degree will encourage critical reflection on management, seen in a broader societal context, and will develop students knowledge and understanding of general principles and theoretical frameworks of management and organisation. It will also examine the relationship between behaviour and experience, focusing primarily on the role of the individual within an organisation, including the significance of time, gender and motive as organising principles.
This new MA is aimed at students seeking a professional qualification that will equip them for a career in visual arts management, critical curating, museum or gallery administration and in the broader field of aesthetic approaches to understanding management and organizations. Careers in all of these fields can lead to a high level of decision-making responsibility, demanding independence and self-motivation as well as the capacity for team work and effective management. One of the prerequisites for such a career is an advanced level of professional training, something this course specifically aims to provide.
Teaching and Assessment Methods
A: Knowledge and Understanding
A1 : Developing a critical and reflexive interpretation of the character of management and organizations.
A2 : Understanding the contexts both internal and external that underpin and contribute to the character of managing and organizing.
A3 : Understand the purposes of exhibition making.
A4 : Understand the range of methods available for interpreting objects on display.
A5 : Practical aspects of exhibition making, including concept and research, planning and programming, drawing up budgets, negotiating loans, transport and insurance, catalogue production, security and object handling.
A6 : The concepts, values and debates that inform study and practice in this field.
A7 : Understand the epistemological and social-scientific influences and interpretations of management and organizations.
Outcomes A1-A6 are acquired through lectures, seminars, group and individual tasks and directed independent study. Additionally, the development of the project provides a further opportunity for achieving learning outcomes A1-A7.
Lectures and seminars introduce the required theories and understandings to facilitate students' exploration of the character, contexts, practices and interpretations of management and organisations while demonstrating and encouraging a critical and reflexive approach.
Directed independent study and reading, along with individual and group tasks, enable the further exploration of the relevant areas.
Students are expected to extend and enhance the knowledge and understanding they acquire from lectures and classes by regularly consulting library materials relating to the course.
Outcomes A1-A7 are formally assessed via coursework assignments, which may take a number of forms, including essays, case studies, theoretical and empirical studies.
Outcomes A3-A5 will be assessed in the project.
Outcomes A1-A7 are informally assessed via group work and oral presentations. The associated informal feedback provided enables students to explore and enhance their understanding and develop presentation skills.
B: Intellectual/Cognitive Skills
B1 : Capacity to appraise theoretical ideas.
B2 : Synthesise evidence, arguments or theories from different sources productively in a self-directed manner.
B3 : Think independently and with an open mind while making connections between familiar and new ideas or material.
B4 : Formulate logical and coherent arguments.
B5 : Interpret and critically evaluate empirical evidence.
B6 : Reason critically and offer judgements based on argument that can be communicated effectively to a specialist or non-specialist audience.
B7 : Plan and undertake under supervision a substantial independent project.
Skills B1-B6 are acquired and enhanced primarily through directed independent study, reading and through group and individual tasks linked to the courses, although lectures and seminars also provide a means for teachers to demonstrate these skills through examples.
Independent study and preparation for these tasks involves the reading, interpretation and critical evaluation of relevant theoretical frameworks, thus facilitating students assimilation and synthesis of a range of theories and concepts while encouraging a critical and reflexive approach to empirical evidence.
Lecturers provide necessary feedback on student work. Lecturers also engage students outside the classroom through office hours, appointments and email communication.
Skill B7 is acquired through the work that students undertake for the project. The project also provides a further opportunity for students to acquire skills B1-B6.
Skills B1-B7 are formally assessed via coursework assignments and also through the project.
Skills B1-B4 are informally assessed via oral presentations. The associated informal feedback provided enables students to explore and enhance their understanding and develop presentational skills.
C: Practical Skills
C1 : Access and retrieve information from a variety of primary and secondary sources.
C2 : Curatorial skills, including an understanding of working with a wide range of materials in both two and three dimensions in a gallery, museum or heritage environment.
C3 : Critical Skills: including selection of relevant material, and appraisal of other people's arguments on the basis of familiarity with source materials and current literature
C4 : Writing Skills: including use of proper academic conventions, creating logical and structured narratives, and effective use of language to articulate complex conceptual issues and create frameworks for understanding them.
C5 : Hypothesise about organisational issues and events in the wider context.
C6 : Analyse and evaluate empirical data.
Skills C1-C6 are acquired and enhanced primarily through the work that students do for their courses, although lectures also provide a means for teachers to demonstrate these skills through examples.
Skill C6 is further acquired through the work that students do for the project, which also provides a further opportunity for students to acquire skills C1-C5.
Research skills will likewise be developed through work on the project.
Skills C1-C5 are formally assessed via coursework assignments. This enables the demonstration of the relevant theories and empirical evidence and facilitates the demonstration of a critical and reflexive approach to such evidence.
Skill C2 is primarily assessed through the project and associated course work.
Skills C1-C5 are informally assessed through group work and oral presentations along with the associated informal feedback. This further enables students to explore and enhance their understanding and develop research and presentational skills.
D: Key Skills
D1 : The ability to communicate information, arguments and ideas cogently and effectively in a variety of contexts using a range of different aids or resources.
D2 : Familiarity with information technology such as word processing, databases and use of the web to locate and analyse data and other relevant information.
D3 : Basic skills in quantitative research, financial monitoring and record-keeping.
D4 : Management of projects and timetables. Students should be able to apply knowledge and understanding in order to make judgements and offer solutions in a range of contexts and develop the analytical skills necessary to investigate and understand management and organisations.
D5 : Capacity for collaborative working: students should expect to work collaboratively in groups on the joint project and on practical assignments, find solutions to set problems, undertake collaborative research and prepare informal presentations that they deliver to their fellow students.
D6 : Time management, task prioritisation and working to deadlines. Students are expected to take responsibility for their own work; reflect on their own learning and performance and make constructive use of feedback; develop their work independently of guidance for extended periods.
Communication skills (D1) are developed through individual and group tasks involving oral presentation and group discussion in the lecture.
IT skills (D2) are developed as individual research tasks involving web based material, internet and various electronic media.
Quantitative skills (D3) are introduced in modules and may be developed, if appropriate, in the project.
Planning and organisation, enterprise and resourcefulness (D4-6) are essential to any learning process based on independent study and to some extent individual advice from teachers. These skills are further developed as students pursue the learning activities associated with their courses.
Skills D1-D6 are formally assessed via coursework assignments in relation both to process and product. Skills D5 and D6 may be demonstrated by meeting submission deadlines and producing collaborative work with others during the research phase of coursework. Skills D1-D4 will be assessed through the content of submitted work.
Key transferable skills are assessed throughout the scheme; however, the approach to assessment varies. Written communication skills, problem solving and IT skills are assessed directly throughout the degree programme. Personal skills are assessed through coursework. Verbal communication skills are not formally assessed although feedback on communication skills forms part of the informal feedback provided on small group tutorial presentations