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What is Museology and Museum Studies?
Museology and museum studies is the area of study and employment that deals with the operations and management of museums, including the preservation and display of artifacts, art, materials, and works relevant to the theme4 and scope of that museum. In addition, based on the museums focus, procurement, research, restoration and budgeting may be included in the responsibilities of an individual in this field. The field of study is relatively new though has gained momentum and traction among scholars in recent years.
Individuals seeking an education in this field will typically pursue a master's degree at minimum in order to be able to seek employment. As such, individuals may earn a bachelor's degree in museology and museum studies, or in a related field such as anthropology, archaeology, history, art history, library studies or others. A master's degree program prepare individuals with the understanding of layout, promotion, customer service, context and more, allowing the individual to not only manage, but present images and objects in a meaningful and entertaining way.
A curriculum may include:
- History and Development of Museums
- Exhibit Presentation
- Research and Restoration
- Budgeting and Museum Services
- Promotion and Marketing
Museums are located throughout the United States and established for a variety of reasons and themes. Individuals may seek out employment at any such institutions, but will have their responsibilities grow or shrink based on the size and popularity of the given museum. Based on the subject matter covered by such an institution, museums may or may not have laboratories, restoration facilities, research centers, and procurement departments. Individuals may work as curators, providing instruction and museum information to visitors, or may work on the design of a given exhibit, bringing together themes and works in order to create an enjoyable experience.
Job Growth, Salary, and Related Fields
Job growth is expected to increase in the next decade due mostly to the need to modernize records and facilities in order to better preserve and make more efficient a given museum. The average salary of a museologist is approximately $45,000 per year, though may be affected by role, responsibilities, location and size of the museum. Individuals interested in museum studies may also wish to consider careers as archivists, curators, and museum technicians and conservators.