Museum Studies Program

Who owns the past? How is the value of an object determined? Seek out answers to these and other questions while earning a minor in museum studies.

The University Studies Division offers an interdisciplinary minor in Museum Studies, overseen by an Advisory Board that includes members from Art, Sociology and Anthropology, History and the University Museums. Courses in Museum Studies may address a range of topics, including actual museums (their histories, architecture, operations, politics, ethics, etc.), collective memory, institutional critique, cultural heritage and/or property, or public history. Courses may also count toward the program if a substantial part of their pedagogy is object-based. 

Colgate is home to a vast collection of natural history specimens. These specimens have been used extensively in teaching throughout the last 150 years, beginning in 1868 with their arrival in the luggage of Albert Bickmore, former professor of zoology and geology and founder of the American Museum of Natural History in New York City.

View more photos from the Museum Studies Gallery.

The coursework prepared me for a career within cultural institutions and equipped me with the ability to question these
establishments and my place within them.

Claire Pandaleon '18

Course Offerings
Learn about the required
and elective courses
available under the
Museum Studies Program

Find Museum Studies
Courses >>

MUSE Alumni
Read about past
MUSE students and 
learn what they are
doing today.

Learn more about Museum Studies Alumni >>

MUSE Gallery
View a collection of
images and videos
in the Museum Studies

Browse the MUSE gallery >>

Rather than thinking about art as something that stands alone, we are now paying more attention to the institutions through which we access these objects and how that has framed our perceptions.

Elizabeth Marlowe Associate professor of art