Course Schedule

The courses below are those offered for the term. (To view the course description, class dates & times, touch on accordion tab by the title.)

State-specific Information for Online Programs

Note: Students should be aware of additional state-specific information for online programs. For more information, please contact an admissions representative. 

  • Online Courses

    460.601.81 - Exploring Museum Professions

    Phillip Bahar

    Online 5/27 - 8/18

    Managing a 21st-century museum relies upon the coordinated efforts of a wide range of specially skilled staff from directors, curators, and educators to collection managers, conservators, and exhibition designers to event planners, press officers, fundraisers, and administrators to media, IT, membership, security, and facilities management teams. These professionals working behind-the-scenes or out front with the public define the quality of the institution and each visitor's experience. Through readings and interviews with leaders in the field, this course examines the core functions of a museum and explores how the roles and responsibilities of museum professionals assure an organization's daily operation, growth and sustainability. Current issues facing museums, including diversity in the workforce, financial challenges, and the effects of technology will also be addressed. In addition, students will engage in activities to help strategize their own museum career. Note: This course may be taken as an elective, if you have taken 460.602 to meet the requirement.

    Technology Fee: $200.00

    460.602.81 - Museums in the Digital Age

    Phyllis Hecht

    Online 5/27 - 8/18

    With the emergence of new media and the ever-expanding use of the Internet, the traditional role and scope of the museum is changing. The museum has a new position in global communication, dissemination of information and cultural understanding. The introduction of technology into the museum is challenging traditional exhibition concepts, introducing new interactions with museum audiences, and affecting the museum’s core operations. This course introduces students to the museum field and explores the impact of media and technology on the museum, including an overview of the historical role of the museum in society and an examination of the current uses and effects of digitization, the Internet, and wireless technologies in these institutions, as well as basic concepts underlying the planning of a technology project for a museum. Note: This course may be taken as an elective, if you have taken 460.601 to meet the requirement.

    Technology Fee: $200.00

    460.604.81 - Introduction to Museum Education

    Elizabeth Baird

    Online 5/27 - 8/18

    This course introduces students to the critical and fundamental educational function of museums, the core responsibilities of museum educators, and the impact of museum education practices in a pluralistic society. We review theories of how people learn, current teaching practices in museums, and the unique roles that objects play in an informal learning environment. We analyze the wide range of audiences for education programs, approaches to developing museum programs and interpretive projects, and strategies for measuring success. We learn how museum educators advocate for and activate diverse perspectives internally and externally in order to make museums more inclusive, empathetic, and user-centered.

    Technology Fee: $200.00

    460.608.81 - The Business of Museums

    Robert Beatty

    Online 5/27 - 8/18

    Museums are stewards of cultural patrimony, disseminators of knowledge, and agents of civic and social awareness. They are community icons, places of respite, economic drivers, and centers of informal education and public engagement. In serving these functions, museums must deal within a hyper-competitive entertainment and commercial environment. While they serve the greater good, they must function as businesses. As nonprofits, they cultivate financial and community support from individuals and donors. They also rely on fees, grants, sponsorships, retail operations and other strategies to survive. This course is a journey through the business side of the museum world. Students will explore the range, fundamentals, and subtleties of the museum world including mission, governance, programming, management, finance, fundraising, public relations, legal and ethical issues, technologies, risk management, audience engagement, leadership, and strategic planning, all in the context of current news stories and events.

    Technology Fee: $200.00

    460.611.81 - History & Philosophy of Museums

    George Harris

    Online 5/27 - 8/18

    From cabinets of curiosities to historical monuments and sites of memory, this course surveys museum history from a global perspective to examine how the museum’s function has changed over time. Students create a comprehensive timeline of museum history and philosophy—thinking through and visualizing the way certain concepts and events are related in time and across space. Through case studies and course readings in museum history, theory and methods, students will contextualize the philosophical trends that have impacted organizational structures, outreach, collection strategies, and the museum’s role and relationship to its public.

    Technology Fee: $200.00

    460.615.81 - Museums and Community Engagement

    Candace Matelic

    Online 5/27 - 8/18

    This course explores how museums and cultural organizations of all sizes can strengthen their relationships with the communities they serve. No longer are museums measured and judged solely by their internal resources—collections, endowments, facilities, and staff—but rather by the external benefits and value they create for individuals and communities. Growing numbers of museums are learning to make their organizations more meaningful and relevant by involving their communities in ongoing planning and decision-making. They are reframing museum activities to focus on what matters to their communities. By getting involved in community challenges and developing new partnerships, they are identifying underserved audiences and creating memorable visitor experiences. As museums begin this journey towards community engagement, they are initiating and facilitating social change and moving towards social entrepreneurship. This course includes the theory and skills of community engagement, drawing on both research and practice for examples.

    Technology Fee: $200.00

    460.619.81 - Museums, Race, and Inclusion

    Porchia Moore

    Online 5/27 - 8/18

    For over two decades, museums have been grappling with how to increase participation and engagement with community members who are historically under-engaged. By and large, the 2012 Center for the Future of Museum’s Report informs us that of the core group of museum visitors, less than 10% represent visitors of color. This course will examine the historical arch of diversity and inclusion initiatives in the field including recent activism as engineered by museum activists and change-makers of the Inclusive Museum Movement. We will explore and define discourses of participation within museum scholarship. This course will use interdisciplinary pedagogies such as Critical Race Theory and Social Inclusion Theory as informative frameworks to help us interrogate our current museum praxis, the museum space, and how invisible social structures such as institutional racism, privilege, and oppression impact our understanding of terms such as diversity, inclusion, equity, and access. In this course, we will explore why race matters in museums and seek to create and identify new discourses on diversity and inclusion for a more vibrant, 21st century museum social ecosystem.

    Technology Fee: $200.00

    460.632.81 - Practice of Public History

    Russell Stoermer

    Online 5/27 - 8/18

    The overarching theme of the course is to introduce students--both traditional and professional--to public history as it is, and might be, practiced. From historic houses to battlefields, institutes, and preservation advocacy, the course is intended to blend theory and experience by providing an informed and engaging overview of the many practical aspects of, trends in, and professional opportunities offered by, public history, as well as introduce them to the challenges that currently face the field. By the end of the course, students will know the many different ways in which public history is practiced today within and without the museum, and be able to broadly evaluate public history sites, from programming and interpretation to marketing and fundraising.

    Technology Fee: $200.00

    460.635.81 - Curatorship: Principles and Practices

    Stephanie Brown

    Online 5/27 - 8/18

    What does it mean to curate? The idea and meaning of curation has evolved and developed in recent years. Traditional notions of curatorial authority have come under question as the concept of curating has expanded. In this course, students will study principles and practices relating to core curatorial functions, learn about the traditional role of curators in different museums, and consider how and why those roles are changing. Students will consider ethical and other challenges facing museums and will investigate the role that technology is playing in changing curatorial functions. Students will visit museums to critique specific curatorial practices, write and present an acquisition proposal, and work collaboratively in a group to create and present an exhibition proposal.

    Technology Fee: $200.00

    460.636.81 - Living Collections

    Sarah Chicone

    Online 5/27 - 8/18

    Zoos, aquaria, botanical gardens, and nature preserves, like many other museums, are collection-based institutions. This course explores the unique character of these institutions in their core functional areas including the special considerations and challenges of caring for, interpreting, and exhibiting living collections. Developed by three museum professionals with specialties in terrestrial, aquatic, and botanic institutions-course topics are explored through the lenses unique to plants, animals, and marine life. In addition to understanding the core functional areas of these museums students will analyze the complex social role of cultural institutions which are devoted to the living world.

    Technology Fee: $200.00

    460.637.81 - Curating Online Exhibitions and Experiences

    Nikolaos Apostolides

    Online 5/27 - 8/18

    Today, every museum must have an effective online presence. Increasingly, museum professionals from multiple disciplines – curatorial, collections management, new media, publications, external affairs, etc. – need to collaborate to create online exhibitions and experiences. It is essential that museum professionals have a solid grounding in the theory of online curation, as well as the practical skills to plan, design, and implement online exhibitions and experiences that capture the imagination of online museum visitors. Students will discuss questions such as: What are the unique challenges of curating online? How are the aesthetics of online spaces similar and/or different from traditional bricks and mortar museum galleries and exhibit spaces? What strategies and methodologies can the curator and other museum professionals apply to successfully educate, inform, and engage online exhibition visitors? What are the trends in curating online museum exhibitions, and where does the future lie in this exciting new area of the museum field? Course readings, assignments and discussions will culminate in a research paper on current trends in online curation in museums.

    Technology Fee: $200.00

    460.640.81 - Educational Programming for Museum Audiences

    Anna Slafer

    Online 5/27 - 8/18

    Educational programming for today's museums requires more skills than ever before, from defining mission-driven educational goals to conducting summative evaluation, from understanding learning theory and characteristics of a myriad of museum audiences, to designing and implementing technology solutions. Students in this course will learn the steps needed to design sound educational programming in museums, including developmentally appropriate learning theory and strategies for audiences such as children, families, adults, teachers, and students. Prerequisite: Introduction to Museum Education (460.604)

    Technology Fee: $200.00 Prerequisite: Introduction to Museum Education (460.604)

    460.665.81 - Introduction to Archives

    Christopher Steele

    Online 5/27 - 8/18

    This course provides an introduction to the theory and practice of archives, including an overview relating to the elements of an archival program and the role and work of archivists. Special attention will be paid to the work of archivists in a museum context. The theoretical component of the course will be supplemented with a variety of hands-on exercises, case studies, and informed anecdotes designed to illustrate the relationship between theory and practice. Although American archival tradition will be the focus, international perspectives on archival theory and practice will play an important role in the course of study. Topics include: acquisition; appraisal; arrangement and description; preservation; reference; outreach; archival access systems; legal and ethical issues; and born-digital curation, including digital preservation.

    Technology Fee: $200.00

    460.666.81 - Collection Management

    Carlos Hernandez

    Online 5/27 - 8/18

    Museums exist to preserve and share their collections with the world. Collection managers, or registrars, are essential to any collecting institution, whether collections are art, history, science, or live specimens. This course focuses on management principles that can be applied broadly to any type of collection. The course covers all aspects of collections care from the acquisition of objects, evaluation, care and storage, through loans and exhibitions. Safe collections care and handling, using the most current methods, are emphasized so objects may be preserved for future generations. Any student who intends to work at a collecting institution will benefit from mastering the practical knowledge and skills underpinning many phases of museum work, which will be taught in this class.

    Technology Fee: $200.00

    460.666.82 - Collection Management

    George Harris

    Online 5/27 - 8/18

    Museums exist to preserve and share their collections with the world. Collection managers, or registrars, are essential to any collecting institution, whether collections are art, history, science, or live specimens. This course focuses on management principles that can be applied broadly to any type of collection. The course covers all aspects of collections care from the acquisition of objects, evaluation, care and storage, through loans and exhibitions. Safe collections care and handling, using the most current methods, are emphasized so objects may be preserved for future generations. Any student who intends to work at a collecting institution will benefit from mastering the practical knowledge and skills underpinning many phases of museum work, which will be taught in this class.

    Technology Fee: $200.00

    460.667.81 - Collection Management Systems

    Kate Collen

    Online 5/27 - 8/18

    Collections Management Systems, the workhorses of museum information technology, provide staff members and the public alike with access to collections information for a myriad of purposes. In this course, we will look at how these systems have evolved from their traditional role as registration tools to rich repositories of collection information, with the potential to interface with other types of systems, both inside and beyond the museum walls. This course introduces widely used museum Collections Management Systems in a series of developer-led presentations, providing students with the opportunity to evaluate how collections management transactions are performed using various software. Students will learn the basic features of Collections Information Policies and how to apply museum standards to analyze these policies. Data migration planning – from paper to electronic, and electronic to electronic --will be discussed, as well as emerging technologies used in conjunction with traditional Collections Management Systems. This is a must-have course for students with the goal of becoming a registrar, collections manager, or digital curator. Note: Students are strongly encouraged to take Collection Management (460.666) before enrolling in this course.

    Technology Fee: $200.00 Note: Students are strongly encouraged to take Collection Management (460.666) before enrolling in this course.

    460.670.81 - Digital Preservation

    Millard Schisler

    Online 5/27 - 8/18

    This course introduces students to the current state of digital preservation, preservation challenges, and basic concepts for designing effective digital preservation plans and programs. Topics include the relevance of digital preservation for museums; archival principles that inform preservation practices; standards and policies; considerations in preservation strategies; issues relating to formats, repositories, and processes; and emerging preservation solutions and services. Note: Students who are not enrolled in the Digital Curation Certificate program are encouraged to take 460.666 Collection Management before enrolling in this course.

    Technology Fee: $200.00 Note: Students who are not enrolled in the Digital Curation Certificate program are encouraged to take 460.666 Collection Management before enrolling in this course.

    460.755.81 - Museum Projects

    Linda Norris

    Online 5/27 - 8/18

    This course expands opportunities for practical experiences beyond the onsite seminar and internship elective. Offered as an online experience, this course will involve students in an actual museum or museum-related project. Students will work in collaborative teams facilitated by a JHU faculty member and engage with museum professionals outside of the program. The goal of the course will be to establish a prototype or complete a real-life project of value to the museum field while interacting with current museum professionals. Museum Projects will be offered on an occasional basis and will vary in topic. Different prerequisites will be set up each time the course is scheduled depending upon the specific project. In addition to weekly research, writing and asynchronous discussions in the course management system, students should expect to participate in five to seven real-time online meetings throughout the semester, dates of which will be determined by the Museum Project team in tandem with the project requirements and deadlines. Students must submit a Museum Project application form two weeks before registration begins to be approved for enrollment in the Museum Project course. On this form, students will describe their interest in the specific Museum Project offered and other applicable topics as requested, as well as confirm their ability to attend five to seven real-time sessions. A selection committee will review the applications and determine enrollment eligibility before the semester’s registration begins. Enrollment limits may vary depending upon the project.

    Technology Fee: $200.00 Prerequisite: Students must have completed a minimum of 2 courses in the Museum Studies or Cultural Heritage Programs.

  • Off-Site or International

    460.673.91 - Digital Curation Certificate Internship

    Stephanie Brown

    MTWThF 9:00 - 5:00; 5/27 - 8/18

    The internship, including at least 120 hours of field experience, affords students the opportunity to gain hands-on experience working with experts who are leading digital curation activities in museums and related cultural heritage organizations in the U.S. and abroad. The internship is a partnership between the university and the host institution, and is customized to meet each student’s needs and career goals. The program will assist students in arranging appropriate internships. Student interns will produce evidence of their accomplishments through work products, project reports, or other documentation in an online course component and will participate in online discussion forums with other students enrolled in digital curation internships during the same semester. The internship is usually taken after completing at least two of the following core courses: Digital Preservation (460.670), Foundations of Digital Curation (460.671), or Managing Digital Information in Museums (460.672). Note: Students should discuss internship plans with the Digital Curation Certificate Program Coordinator at least one semester before enrolling in the course.

    Note: The internship is usually taken after completing at least two of the following core courses: Digital Preservation (460.670), Foundations of Digital Curation (460.671), or Managing Digital Information in Museums and Archives (460.672). Students should discuss internship plans with the program coordinator at least one semester before enrolling in the course.

    460.750.91 - Museum Internship

    Stephanie Brown

    MTWThF 9:00 - 5:00; 5/27 - 8/18

    An internship at a student’s local museum, approved by the internship coordinator, may be substituted for one elective course. To fulfill the internship requirement, a student must complete a minimum of 80 hours of work onsite and a project, (either a research paper or a practical product) on an approved topic related to his/her experience, due at the end of the semester. Students also participate in online discussion and course work during the semester. Before registering for the internship option, the student should contact the internship coordinator for approval. At least four to six weeks before the beginning of the semester in which the internship will take place, the student must submit: 1) a description of the internship weekly duties including activities and/or responsibilities; 2) learning objectives and goals; 3) why this experience should be part of the Museum Studies degree; and 4) a signed letter of commitment from the internship supervisor. Students must have completed a minimum of two courses in the program before registering for this internship.

    Note: Students must have completed a minimum of two courses in the program before registering for this internship and have approval from the internship coordinator, Judy Landau jlandau@jhu.edu

  • Online Courses (Cross-Listed)

    465.734.81 - Heritage Tourism

    Hannah Rogers

    Online 6:00 - 8:45; 5/27 - 8/18

    This course explores the practice and theory of heritage tourism and the history of its developments and impacts. Through the lens of sustainable economic development, it will examine the benefits and challenges of tourism and site management in both rural and urban contexts. We will look closely at the relationship between culture, heritage, and tourism by examining a range of topics including the use of natural and cultural heritage resources for tourism development, understanding tourism development and tourist motivations, impacts of heritage tourism, international examples of heritage tourism and the importance of sustainability.

    Technology Fee: $200.00

    465.736.81 - NAGPRA: Repatriation as Compliance or Ethical Practice

    April Beisaw

    Online 6:00 - 8:45; 5/27 - 8/18

    In the United States, the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA) outlines a process by which government agencies (and those who receive government funding) must return human remains and sacred objects to those who claim them. Repatriation is a complicated process because it means something different in almost every case. One of its earliest claims took 20-years to resolve. In 2017, the Ancient One was returned to the tribes of the Columbia River for reburial after DNA tests proved the relationship that tribes had claimed all along. But now reproductions of the Ancient One’s skull are being sold by a company that holds the copyright. When those from outside the culture to which he was returned can examine and/or profit from a replica, the distinction between compliance with the law and the ethics of return is clear. Outside of the United States, few repatriation laws exist and many argue that institutions like The British Museum are the best places to protect world heritage. Is providing care of and access to human remains and cultural objects preferable over returning heritage to those from which it was taken? In this course, we examine repatriation claims around the globe in order to critique NAGPRA and establish a compliance toolkit. Where NAGPRA doesn’t apply, heritage professionals can use the successes and failures of past repatriations, and a firm grounding in ethics, to make repatriation decisions. Nothing in NAGPRA prohibits practitioners from exceeding its scope and seeking out opportunities to build relationships with descendent communities even when repatriation is not required by law.

    Technology Fee: $200.00