University of Denver

Type of education program: 
Program name: 
Anthropology Department
School of Art and Art History

Denver University offers several degrees that prepare students for working in a museum environment: a BFA in Pre-Art Conservation, an MA in Anthropology with a concentration in Museum and Heritage Studies, or an MA in Art History with a concentration in museum studies. 


The course of study to earn a BFA in Pre-Art Conservation students desiring to enter graduate programs to train to become art conservators or to enter an art materials safty profession. It requires intensive work in chemistry, languages, art history and studio art, as well as training in the senior year under the supervision of the chief conservator at the Denver Art Museum. One semester in Florence, Italy during the junior year is highly recommended in order to continue conservation studies under the conservators at Studio Art Centers International.  Students participate in the group BFA exhibition at the conclusion of their studies.


Both the Anthropology and Art History Museum Studies Concentration programs have joint course offerings in conservation, information technology, and museum management. Both programs benefit from institutional ties between DU and the Denver Art Museum and Denver Museum of Nature and Science, providing students with research, internship and job opportunities. Other Denver-area museums and cultural organizations offer ampleinternship and job opportunities.


The majority of students seeking an MA in Art History choose to complete the museum studies concentration. Alumni have gone on to diverse and rewarding careers in the museum world. Our partnership with the Denver Art Museum forms a central part of the museum studies program.


Candidates for an M.A. degree in Anthropology with a concentration in MHS are expected to achieve graduate competence in anthropology as a whole, along with their specialization in MHS.  Ideally, we train students to be practicing anthropologists in museums and related cultural institutions.  Both generalist and specialist training in museum and heritage studies are provided for students interested in working in different sizes and types of museums, cultural institutions, archaeological and heritage sites.  The program's goal is to train museum professionals, but to also provide students with an understanding of the larger sociocultural, economic, and political contexts in which museums exist and how they influence museums and museum practices.  The Museum Studies concentration in the Department of Anthropology prepares students to be both scholars and practitioners. The program rests on the philosophy that anthropology should be in service to both science and the public, and that cultural work is an essential and valuable part of social life. Students are trained, both academically and professionally, to meet the many challenges of cultural work in contemporary society.


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