Catering for curators
The master of museum studies offered at Australia's University of Sydney is now available at the University of Hong Kong's School of Professional and Continuing Education (HKU SPACE).
"We are very strict about having the same programme here," says Professor Chan Wing-wah, head of HKU SPACE's centre for creative performing arts. "Students in Australia and Hong Kong share the same teachers, and the assignments are identical. The only difference is local students study at an intensive mode, with more lecturing sections each week."
The University of Sydney boasts a long history in museum study, and Chan says: "The course investigates the theory and history of collecting materials, their display and interpretation, intangible cultural heritage and the changing nature of the museum as a concept and as an organisation."
The course is ideal for curators at museums and galleries. "The Leisure and Cultural Services Department sent curators to study the course," Chan says. "It is the only programme in Hong Kong to focus on museum studies. It equips students with the practical skills of how to be a curator. It teaches skills to build an international network and borrow exhibits, and laws involving copyright issues."
Applicants should hold a bachelor of arts degree with a major in fields relevant to humanities or social sciences. Students need to complete a 20-day internship with a Hong Kong museum or elsewhere. This can be taken over a six-month period for working students. As a part-time programme, the course takes two years to finish. Classes are held on weekday evenings and Saturdays.