The Bachelor of Arts in Museum Studies (BAMS) program is designed to give students applied museum experience that will support a career in cultural heritage management, curation and museum administration. Accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD) and requiring only 39-40 credits, the BAMS program is designed to support a double major with compatible areas of study such as visual arts, business, education, history, and even chemistry and forensic science.
The BAMS program focuses on teaching practical museum skills and didactic knowledge for hands-on positions, such as registrar, preparator, and archives technician, alongside what’s needed for administrative and research positions in curatorial and related departments.
Taught by practicing art historians, curators and museum professionals, the program is designed as a launchpad for future studies in curation, museum studies and arts administration by providing broad art historical and museological exposure that will prepare students for further studies at the master's and Ph.D. levels, while simultaneously providing experience and skills to start entry-level work upon graduation in museums and nonprofit organizations of all types and sizes, including art, children’s and history museums, as well as commercial art galleries, public art organizations and more.
For BFA in Arts and B.A. in Visual Arts majors, BAMS can add valuable exhibition development and preparatory skills, art historical methodology and resources, and project management skills to support the growth and execution of their artistic ambitions.
Museum professionals are problem-solvers, innovators, initiators, storytellers, forensic investigators, communicators and are driven to inspire interest in all areas of cultural heritage: artistic, historical and scientific.
They understand collections (physically and intrinsically), audiences (physical experience and intellectual engagement) and how to tell stories by developing immersive, mesmerizing and captivating narrative displays that inspire curiosity and interest-driven investigation in visitors.
Preservers and purveyors of cultural heritage, museums and their staff facilitate visitors' experiences with information and perspectives of the past, present and future through interactions that educate, guide and inspire visitors to learn and explore their world. The BAMS program will train students to generate opportunities for transformative personal encounters with objects and invite visitors to explore stories waiting to be told, through the application of scholarship, close looking techniques and technological tools.
Learning by doing is at the heart of UT's educational mission and Museum Studies is no exception.
Using the Scarfone/Hartley Gallery and additional college galleries as learning laboratories, graduates of this program gain hands-on experience with museum operations and collections as well as exposure to 21st-century museum tools, best practices and standards. In particular, the Scarfone/Hartley Gallery is operated by students and supervised by the director. Fifty percent of museum studies courses involve utilization of the gallery for implementing skills as preparators, in exhibition design, development and execution, as well as developing curatorial skills. Students are also encouraged to work for the gallery to continue to grow their skills as both student workers and interns.
The program also studies and cares for The University of Tampa Permanent Art Collection, housed in Bailey Arts Studios. Students research, examine and apply collection care skills to the collection, and every year are generating more information about the collection for the University's collections management software, a common system used in the field, preparing them for entry-level positions at renowned institutions by offering them practical experience with displaying, managing, researching and interpreting objects in a museum setting.
Within the BAMS program, students can focus their study in these major areas:
- Collection Management
- Exhibition Design
- Preparator Practices
- Art History (Global Pre-Modern, Modern and Contemporary)
- Museum/ Nonprofit Administration
- Curatorial Practices
- Art Historical Research and Theory
Like many other programs at UT, BAMS prides itself on being student-focused and goal-oriented. We work to tailor the studies of each student through electives, independent study, special projects and internship opportunities to provide thorough preparation for entry-level positions in museums and galleries or further education in museum studies, art history and arts administration.
The BAMS program is designed with a streamlined 39-40 credits, to be employed as both a focal major and a practicable secondary major, complementing many other majors offered at UT.
- BFA in Art
- BFA in Graphic Design
- BFA in New Media
- BA in History
- Communications: Advertising and Public Relations, Media and Culture
- Business: Marketing, Accounting, Entrepreneurship, Management, and Leadership Studies
- Education Degrees: Secondary and Elementary
- BS in Chemistry
With a degree in museum studies, there are a number of career paths one can pursue.
Here are a few to consider:
- Preparator/Art Handler
- Commercial Art Gallery Assistant
- Collections Maintenance Technician
- Assistant Collections Manager
- Collections Manager
- Exhibition Designer
- Visitor Services and Engagement
- Events/Rental Manager
- Volunteer Coordinator
- Community Outreach Coordinator
- Education Programs Coordinator (Tours, Lectures, Camps, etc.)
- Museum Public Relations Coordinator
- Membership and Advocacy Fundraising Manager
- Major Gifts Fundraising Assistant
- Major Gifts Officer
- National Park Service Ranger
- Historical House / Historical Site Manager
- Curatorial Assistant
- Associate Curator
- Conservator/ Restorer