University of Delaware

Type of education program: 
Program name: 
Museum Studies Certificate
Arts Conservation Program and Winterthur Museum
Historic Preservation

The University of Delaware offerings for those seeking training for a career in museum work: a Certificate in Museum Studies to students enrolled in a number of Masters' or Ph.D. programs, Undergraduate Material Culture Preservation Major in the Arts Conservation Program, an MS in Art Conservation in the Arts Conservation Program, a PhD in Preservation Studies. The School of Public Policy and Administration offers an MA in Historic Preservation and a twelve-credit hour Certificate Program in Historic Preservation.


  • The Certificate of Museum Studies (a 12-credit program) is available to students enrolled in a degree granting graduate program at the University, such as a Masters’ or Ph.D. program in History, Urban Affairs and Public Policy (UAPP), Education, Art History, Art Conservation, Master of Business Administration, Master of Arts Liberal Studies (MALS), Fashion Apparel, the Winterthur Program in American Material Culture, and the Longwood Graduate Program.  Students take a minimum of 9 credit hours of classes and complete a three - credit internship to receive the Certificate in Museum Studies. Instructors include distinguished professionals from area museums as well as university faculty. Ensuring Quality in the Future Our mission is to help ensure the future of museums and related cultural institutions by educating graduate students who either plan careers in public arts and humanities or will collaborate with cultural institutions as part of future academic careers. While receiving excellent training in their home academic disciplines, Museum Studies students also develop their understanding of the ethical frameworks that guide museums and other cultural not-for-profit organizations. They become knowledgeable in administrative, curatorial, and educational practice. Most important, they understand the challenges faced by cultural institutions in the twenty-first century.


  • The Art Conservation Department offers an undergraduate degree in Material Culture Preservation that prepares students for graduate-level study in conservation, historic preservation, museum studies, library science, or other allied fields. Material Culture includes objects made or modified by humans, such as photographs, archival documents, decorative and fine arts, clothing, domestic possessions, toys, tools, machines, motion pictures and videotape, ethnographic materials, archaeological remains, and architecture.


  • The MS in Art Conservation is offered in collaboration with the Winterthur Museum & Country Estate.  It is a three-year course leading to a Master of Science in Art Conservation. The curriculum is designed to educate and train conservation professionals who can carry out the examination, analysis, stabilization and treatment of art and artifacts, speak to general principles of collection care, and have a broad academic background in science and the humanities.


  • The PhD  program in Preservation Studies is in collaboration with the Center for Material Culture Studies at the University of Delaware.  The Preservation Studies Program (PSP) is an interdisciplinary doctoral course of study that will teach the philosophies, research methodologies, and policies informing preservation efforts focused on art, architecture, landscapes, and material culture. It is distinct from other discipline-based courses of graduate study in that it provides a mechanism to combine cross-field expertise toward doctoral study in preservation. The PSP prepares students to address questions regarding individual objects and works of art, collections, buildings and structures, and sites and landscapes.  The Preservation Studies doctoral program builds on unique and distinguished programs at the University of Delaware and is administered within the College of Arts and Sciences. The PSP may involve collaboration with faculty and physical resources in the Colleges of Arts and Sciences, Agriculture, Engineering, Human Services, Education, and Public Policy, Marine Studies, and the Winterthur Museum (which is already a collaborative partner with the University of Delaware for two graduate programs related to this new Ph.D. program).


  • The Master of Arts in Historic Preservation prepares professionals for the successful practice of historic preservation in public, private, and non-profit venues.  Students are prepared in the theory and practice of historic preservation.  The specific skills that will be developed are: analysis and documentation of historic resources, practice of preservation planning, contextual research design, and advocacy. The program is designed to meet the needs of both traditional graduate students and working professionals, with graduates having the skills and knowledge to work with a wide variety of populations and in diverse settings.  The program provides opportunity to pursue specific areas of emphasis within historic preservation, including (but not limited to): planning, museum studies, material culture, documentation and analysis, non-profit leadership, vernacular architecture and landscapes, geographic information systems, and design.


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