Study-Unit Description

Study-Unit Description


TITLE Museum Placement 1

LEVEL 01 - Year 1 in Modular Undergraduate Course


DEPARTMENT Art and Art History

DESCRIPTION This study-unit is intended to give history of art students a first-hand experience of the workings of a Museum, containing collections of Fine Art and Decorative Arts. It will involve them directly in the Museum's operations, working alongside Museum workers. It will require them to compile comparative research on similar institutions based in Malta and overseas and it will also provide them with the platform to present their work to an audience.

The study-unit will be structured as follows:

- 2 hour introductory lecture about the Museum and its various operations;
- 1 hour tour of the Museum;
- 14 hours of fieldwork shadowing Museum personnel and collecting data for their presentation, on an allotted topic*;
- 2 hour concluding seminar during which each student will deliver a brief presentation and submit a written journal on the subject allotted to him/her.

*Topics will include the Museum & Social Media; Art Historical Research in the Museum; Conservation & Maintenance; Visitor experience & Education Programme; Commercial Aspects (eg Shop, after hours events, etc).

It is intended that two Museums participate in this study unit, one of which will be Palazzo Falson Historic House Museum and the other is still to be confirmed.

Study-unit Aims:

The aims of the study unit are as follows:

- To familiarise the student with the Museum, its collections and its operations;
- To give the student an understanding of what it takes to run a Museum;
- To enable the student to observe at close range visitor flows, interaction with visitors and the services offered by a Museum;
- To enable the student to acquire the critical skills to compare and contrast the Museum's operations with that of other Museums locally and overseas;
- To allow the student to use this information to propose innovative best practice models, building on the Museum's existing ones;
- To provide a platform for the students to present their experience and their written journal.

Learning Outcomes:

1. Knowledge & Understanding:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

- Understand the basic principles which define a Museum's operations, enabling him/her to choose the aspect which is of greatest personal interest in order to eventually pursue studies or commence a career in that area.

2. Skills:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

- Clearly assess and critically discuss the various aspects of Museum practice he/she would have participated in;
- Suggest alternative best practice models, based on comparative studies undertaken with other Museums;
- Demonstrate effectively how he/she can work in a team;
- Present in clear and concise language the experience gleaned, the research undertaken and the innovative proposals for alternative models of best practice.

Main Text/s and any supplementary readings:

- M. Galea, F. Balzan, Palazzo Falson Historic House Museum, Fondazzjoni Patrimonju Malti 2007
- The National Trust Manual of housekeeping: the care of collections in historic houses open to the public, Elsevier 2005
- ICOM DEMHIST website (Proceedings and guidelines available in downloadable pdf form):

STUDY-UNIT TYPE Lectures, Seminars and Placement

Assessment Component/s Assessment Due Resit Availability Weighting
Workshop SEM2 Yes 25%
Reflective Diary SEM2 Yes 75%

LECTURER/S Frederica Agius

The University makes every effort to ensure that the published Courses Plans, Programmes of Study and Study-Unit information are complete and up-to-date at the time of publication. The University reserves the right to make changes in case errors are detected after publication.
The availability of optional units may be subject to timetabling constraints.
Units not attracting a sufficient number of registrations may be withdrawn without notice.
It should be noted that all the information in the description above applies to study-units available during the academic year 2020/1. It may be subject to change in subsequent years.