Master of Museum Studies
The information on this page applies to future students. Current students should refer to their faculty handbooks for course information.
Museums and galleries are pivotal spaces for social and cultural imagining. The Master of Museum Studies program gives you the chance to develop a rich understanding of these important cultural institutions through museology; the study of museums.
Our program provides both academic and vocational learning experiences across such disciplines as history, art history, archaeology, anthropology, sociology, cultural studies, architecture and natural history. This wide scope of inquiry prepares you for the real-world complexities of working in museums and galleries, while allowing you to build upon areas of particular interest.
More than covering just the theory and history of collecting material things, you will gain an appreciation of museums and their functions in displaying and interpreting cultural objects.
You will leave this program with a portfolio of professional internship experience thanks to project-based work under the supervision of experienced practitioners, providing practical insight into the challenges museums face today.
Our course also fosters professional networking by drawing on well-established industry links to help increase your employment opportunities. Our students have been placed in internships at the Art Gallery of NSW, The Powerhouse Museum, and Historic Houses Trust of NSW, with some also undertaking international placements at the British Museum in England and the American Museum of National History in the USA.
This in-depth program into museum research and practice will ready you for all aspects of museum work, including curation, education, public programs, administration, collection management, as well as non-museum jobs in cultural sector policy and planning.
Please note: The Master of Museum Studies will be replaced with a new program in 2014, the Master of Museum and Heritage Studies. *This new degree is still subject to CRICOS Registration. Further information on this new program will be available in June 2013.
Units of study
For full information on Units of Study available in this course, please visit the Sydney Courses website
Full units of study list
- ARHT6914 - Art and Curatorship
- ARHT6935 - The Art Museum: Past,Present and Future
- ARHT6937 - Curating Asian Art
- ARHT6939 - The Documentary Film
- ARHT6940 - Editing the Moving Image
- ARHT6941 - Aesthetic Debates & Curatorial Practices
- ARTS7000 - Academic Communication for Postgraduates
- MUSM7004 - Internship/Placement 1 (Part 1)
- MUSM7005 - Internship/Placement 2 (Part 2)
- MUSM7007 - Museum Studies Dissertation (Part 1)
- MUSM7008 - Museum Studies Dissertation (Part 2)
- MUSM7027 - Internship/Placement
- MUSM7028 - Artefact Studies
- MUSM7029 - Communication and Education
- MUSM7030 - Exhibition Development
- MUSM7031 - Information and Collection Management
- MUSM7032 - Museum and Gallery Administration
- MUSM7033 - The Museum Context
- MUSM7035 - Ethics of Cultural Property
- MUSM7036 - Museums and the Digital
Further course information
Candidates in electing to undertake a dissertation (12cp) must prepare a research proposal and discuss their topic with the academic coordinator prior to enrolling. Approval is subject to the department's discretion and the availability of an appropriate academic supervisor. The dissertation is normally undertaken over two semesters and comprises research and writing toward a project of approximately 12,000 words.
Sydney study plan:
The MMuseumStud requires the satisfactory completion of 8 units of study (48 credit points) (cp) including 3 core units of study (18cp) MUSM7033 The Museum Context, MUSM7004 Internship/Placement Part 1, and MUSM7005 Internship/Placement Part 2. The remaining units of study are chosen from the approved list of electives, or a relevant or related subject area, such as art curatorship or art history, subject to the approval of the academic coordinator. The internship comprises a placement totalling 40 days, normally completed over two semesters (20 days per semester) in a museum or art gallery in Australia or abroad.
Under normal progression, a student shall undertake and successfully complete all units of study to the value of 24 credit points per semester as prescribed for the course. Candidates must maintain a credit average result or above, normally over at least the first 4 units of study, in order to qualify for admission to the dissertation units of study. Students are required to attend all lectures, tutorials and other activities prescribed for their units of study.
Eligible candidates for the degree of Master of Museum Studies undertaken in Sydney complete two compulsory internship units of study with a value of 12 credit points. Each placement is equivalent to 20 days of full-time work and is supervised by museum or gallery professionals. Candidates undertake project work focusing on an aspect of museology and submit a written report equivalent to 4000-5000 words and make a presentation to the class.
Eligible candidates undertaking the degree of Master of Musem Studies also have the option of completing a dissertation on an approved topic over two units of study, normally undertaken over two semesters, with a value of 12 credit points, under the supervision of an academic staff member.
Course outcomes and further study
The program has extensive professional and research links and contributes critically to changes in museology and museums. Professional links also mean that the program places a consistently high percentage of its graduates in museums and museum-related employment.
Graduates of the Master of Museum Studies who have completed a dissertation with a meritorious grade are eligible to pursue a higher degree by research in their chosen subject area.
Admission to candidature for the Master of Museum Studies requires:
(a) a bachelor’s degree with a minimum credit (65%) average, from the University of Sydney, including a major in the humanities or social sciences, or an equivalent qualification; or
(b) completion of the Graduate Certificate or Graduate Diploma in Museum Studies with a minimum credit (65%) average, or an equivalent qualification.
How to apply
How to apply
Australian citizens, permanent residents, New Zealand citizens, and holders of a permanent humanitarian visa, apply through UAC - click on the 'Apply now' icon on this page to proceed with your application.
Please note: not all courses are offered in the July semester intake.
How to apply
Overseas applicants may apply:
(i) directly to the University via the International Office. Further information on applications and English language requirements and support services for international students is available on the International Office website; or
(ii) through a University overseas representative (education agent).
Indicative postgraduate student contribution amount
This student contribution amount for a Commonwealth Supported Place is an indication only of the fees that are payable by you in the calendar year you commence your course, commencing in 2013 for a standard annual full time load of 48 credit points (1.0 EFTSL). The exact student contribution that you pay will depend on the specific units of study in which you ultimately enrol. If you are a Commonwealth supported student and was enrolled in a University course before 1 January 2012 your student contribution may differ.
Annual review for postgraduate student contribution amount
Importantly, student contribution amounts are subject to annual review by the University, and are likely to increase each year of your period of study (subject to a Commonwealth specified cap), effective at the start of each calendar year.
Postgraduate Domestic Tuition Fee
This 2013, tuition fee for a domestic postgraduate student represents the fee that is payable by you in the calendar year you commence your course, commencing in 2012 for a standard annual full time load of 48 credit points (1.0 EFTSL). If your study load is more or less than the 1.0 EFTSL your fee will differ.
Annual review for postgraduate domestic tuition fee
Importantly, tuition fees are subject to annual review by the University, and are likely to increase each year of your period of study, effective at the start of each calendar year.
Additional incidental fees
For some courses there are incidental fees additional to the student contribution and/or course fee. Some of those fees are significant, for example, faculty-specific materials, tools, protected clothing and equipment. For further information about these additional incidental fees, please visit the University's Future Students' website.
Potential for inaccuracy
Whilst every reasonable effort has been made to include correct and up to date information in this prospectus, you are also advised to consult directly with the Student Centre for domestic students or the International Office for international students so that they can provide you with specific and up to date information about those fees.
The academic requirements that are displayed are applicable to currently available courses only, and are updated annually in October and may be changed without notice. The Faculty Handbook and the University of Sydney Calendar are the official legal source of information relating to study at the University of Sydney, and you are referred to those documents
Please note that if you are classified by the University as a Research Training Scheme student in accordance with the Other Grants Guidelines (Research) 2010, you will be exempt from the payment of any SCA or tuition fees for courses undertaken as part of a Research Masters degree and Research Doctoral degree. More information about your eligibility for this Scheme is available here.
International tuition fees for postgraduate students
This 2013, tuition fee for international postgraduate students represents the fees that are payable by you in the calendar year you commence your course, commencing in 2013, for a standard annual full time load of 48 credit points (1.0 EFTSL). If your study load is more or less than the 1.0 EFTSL your fee will differ.
Importantly, tuition fees are subject to annual review, and are likely to increase each year of your period of study, effective at the start of each calendar year.
Additional incidental fees and health insurance
For some courses there are incidental fees additional to the tuition fees. Some of those fees are significant, for example, faculty-specific materials, tools, protected clothing, and equipment. The University's Future Students' webpage has further information about these additional incidental fees for postgraduate coursework students and postgraduate research students.
In addition to the fees indicated here for the course of study, International Students studying on an Australian Student Visa must have appropriate health insurance for the duration of their studies on a Student Visa through an approved provider of the Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) scheme. This is a requirement of the Australian Government, unless otherwise exempted by the Government.
Potential for inaccuracy
Whilst every reasonable effort has been made to include correct and up to date information here, you are also advised to consult directly with the Student Centre for domestic students or the International Office for international students so that they can provide you with specific and up to date information about those fees.