Master of Arts in Museum Studies

Format: Online
Application Deadlines
  • Spring 2022 Priority Deadline: November 4, 2021
  • Spring 2022 Regular Deadline: December 9, 2021
About the Program

Open to everyone, and visited by over 850 million people each year, museums play a critical role in public life and provide communities with a sense of place and a collective heritage. They ensure that marginalized voices and histories are heard, function as an economic engine via tourism, and attend to the needs of diverse communities and academic groups, including those that require special accommodations.

The MA in Museum Studies online degree program grounds students in the theory and practical applications of museum operations, including administration, finance, curation, technology, and education. Developed in collaboration with the New-York Historical Society (N-YHS), students gain the knowledge, skills, and preparation necessary to engage in professional museum practice.

From administration and finance to curation and education, the program educates students about all areas of a museum, regardless of the focus, content, or audience a specific museum serves. Students learn to curate exhibitions, design educational services, and provide museum services with attention to all potential museum visitors.

Meet Some of Our Recent Faculty

Practicum

The first three core courses in the program are supplemented and contextualized by a one-credit (15 hours) practicum per course. Utilizing the rich and varied resources of N-YHS, the residency allows students to gain experience in the practices of curation, collections management, and museum operations. Over the course of the 15 hours, students will observe and document how museum and cultural institutional professionals approach their work and the issues facing museum operations.

Onsite participation is encouraged, but not required. An online option will be provided for those who are unable to attend in person.

Careers

Museums support more than 726,000 American jobs. In its most recent report, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics anticipates a 13% growth in the museums and historical sites sector from 2016 – 2026. Correspondingly, employment of curators/archivists is projected to grow 14% and museum technicians 12% during the same timeframe. The need to store information in archives and an increased public interest in science, art, history, and cultural institutions anticipates greater demand for museum professionals. 

Graduates of the MA in Museum Studies online degree program are prepared to work as curators, archivists, museum technicians, education administrators, conservators, and operations specialists in museum settings. Graduates may also use their acquired skills to pursue employment in government, higher education, and other educational organizations.

Admissions Criteria

Applicants must possess a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution, with a GPA of 3.0 or higher on a 4.0 scale. Applicants are required to write a personal statement, upload a resume, and provide two letters of recommendation. An individual interview may be necessary.

Application Deadlines

  • Spring 2022 Priority Deadline: November 4, 2021
  • Spring 2022 Regular Deadline: December 9, 2021
Apply Now

Recent News About Master of Arts in Museum Studies

CUNY Professor Marci Littlefield

Q&A With Award-Winning Scholar and Museum Studies Student

August 23, 2021

Marci Littlefield, a BMCC professor and CUNY SPS museum studies student, discusses her award-winning research on the history of slavery in the United Kingdom. 

Elizabeth Rubel cap and gown graduation photo

CUNY SPS Celebrates First Class of Museum Studies Graduates

June 10, 2021

CUNY SPS is proud to recognize the inaugural class of the MA in museum studies program with a special celebration on June 1.

CUNY SPS Student Named 2021 Andrew W. Mellon/ACLS Fellow

May 04, 2021

The City University of New York

Marci Littlefield, a professor at the Borough of Manhattan Community College and a student in the CUNY SPS MA in Museum Studies program, has been named one of the 2021 Andrew W. Mellon Foundation/The American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS) community college faculty fellows. Professor Littlefield was awarded this honor for her book project Reconstructed Legacies: Black People, Freedom, and the United Kingdom, which challenges the national narrative of servitude in the United Kingdom.
Lisa Diaz Louis

Museum Access for All: Meet Lisa Diaz Louis

April 22, 2021

Lisa Diaz Louis, a student in the CUNY SPS MA in Museum Studies program, discusses her degree and career plans with Gothamist.