Students who are interested in a paid position, including winter and summer internships, at the Joseph Moore Museum are strongly encouraged to take at least one course through the museum prior to applying.
We offer various levels of museum collections and curation courses, as well as internships for students with previous museum or artistic experience. See the course descriptions below.
MUSE /BIOL 123 APPLIED MUSEUMS: Introduction to Natural History Museum Collections Management (2 credits)
Offered Spring 2014
Through weekly labs in the natural history collections of the Joseph Moore Museum, students will gain hands-on experience with collection management techniques including integrated pest management, preparing animal specimens, accessioning specimens into the collection, organizing specimens within the collection, and cataloging specimens using the Specify museum database software. In addition to weekly 3-hour labs, students will also partake in a one-hour weekly Joseph Moore Museum seminar during which issues related to development, care, use and interpretation of museum and systematic collections will be discussed. This course will be of most interest to students with a background in biology, geology or sociology/anthropology. Prerequisite/Co-requisite BIOL 111 or Geos 201 or 211 or SOAN 216
MUSE/BIOL 213 APPLIED MUSEUMS: Introduction to Science Education in Informal Settings (2 credits)
Offered Fall 2013 by Ann-Eliza Lewis
T, TH 9-10:30, M 12:00-12:50
Public interest in science is growing, yet traditional academic training does not prepare scientists to communicate their findings to a broad audience. Students in this course will become familiar with theories about and methods of communicating science successfully to audiences in an informal setting (e.g. museum exhibit, poster, tour, website). Students will evaluate existing museum exhibits at the Joseph Moore Museum, observe tours, and develop a final project that will present a scientific topic of interest to the public. The course will consist of a 1.5 hour discussion of readings, exercises and projects, a 1.5 hour hands-on session, and a 1 hour seminar jointly held with the Joseph Moore Museum faculty and staff. Prerequisite OR Co-requisite (with Instructor Approval): BIOL 111, or Geos 201 or 211, or SOAN 216. Students with a solid background in their discipline will find it much easier to master the ability to present science to a broad audience.
MUSE/BIOL 223 APPLIED MUSEUMS: Advanced Natural History Museum Collections Management (2 credits) (Previously MUSE 240 NATURAL HISOTRY MUSEUM CURATION)
Offered Fall 2013 by Ann-Eliza Lewis
Students will hone their collections management and preparation skills in a focal taxonomic group (birds, mammals, reptiles, insects, mollusks, paleontology, anthropology, eggs, nests) during labs. Students will also design and complete a semester-long collection-improvement project in their focal group. In addition to weekly 3-hour labs and time needed to complete projects, students will also partake in a one-hour weekly Joseph Moore Museum seminar during which issues related to development, care, use and interpretation of museum and systematic collections will be discussed. Prerequisite MUSE 123. Students seeking to receive Biology credit must get pre-approval from the Biology department based on the proposed project.
MUSE/BIOL 313 APPLIED MUSEUMS: Advanced Science Education in Informal Settings (2 credits)
Students will improve and demonstrate their skills in communicating science in informal settings. Students will spend most of the semester researching a particular topic of interest within their chosen discipline using primary scientific literature and distilling it into an effective presentation for a selected audience. Presentations may take the form of artifact or specimen labels, museum blog posts, segments of guided museum tours etc., using the methods of presentation described in assigned readings and the introductory course (MUSE/BIOL 213). Students will also design, conduct and analyze evaluations of their final projects. Students will learn to use the digital planetarium display and develop planetarium shows for public viewers. In addition to weekly 3-hour labs and time needed to complete projects, students will also partake in a one-hour weekly Joseph Moore Museum seminar during which issues related to development, care, use and interpretation of museum and systematic collections will be discussed. This course is designed to address the Smithsonian Institution’s “Public Programming” competency recommended for museum professional development (http://museumstudies.si.edu/ICOM-ICTOP/index.htm). Prerequisite MUSE/BIOL 213
Museum Host (1-3 credits)
The student will improve and demonstrate communication skills in informal education by developing tour materials based on primary scientific research concerning exhibited museum specimens and hosting the museum during open hours.
The student will apply artistic skills to rendering biological organisms for scientific purposes. The student will work on projects that may range from using images in museum displays, brochures, and other media, to assisting with whole display design.
The student will be introduced to website management, multimedia outlets, blogging and social networking as effective communication tools for Museums, including evaluation and monitoring of existing web communication outlets.