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Unit information: Independent Study Unit: Curating a Collection in 2019/20

Please note: Due to alternative arrangements for teaching and assessment in place from 18 March 2020 to mitigate against the restrictions in place due to COVID-19, information shown for 2019/20 may not always be accurate.

Please note: you are viewing unit and programme information for a past academic year. Please see the current academic year for up to date information.

Unit name Independent Study Unit: Curating a Collection
Unit code HARTM0039
Credit points 20
Level of study M/7
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 2 (weeks 13 - 24)
Unit director Miss. Brace
Open unit status Not open




School/department Department of History of Art (Historical Studies)
Faculty Faculty of Arts

Description including Unit Aims

The University of Bristol Theatre Collection is an accredited museum and research centre dedicated to the study of British Theatre History. It holds a vast collection of original documents, photographs, film footage and artefacts from theatres, actors, performers, designers and theatre historians. Students taking this unit would work collaboratively to curate a scholarly exhibition drawn from the rich and diverse holdings of the Collection. They would develop a theme for the exhibition, choose and research the objects, write the display texts and catalogue, and manage the publicity.


The unit aims to give MA students extra curatorial experience, which is particularly important for those wanting to go on to work in museums and galleries. It will prepare them for independent research on the dissertation, while allowing them to collaborate on a project which combines scholarship with a concern for the display and dissemination of ideas and materials. It will contribute to knowledge about a major archive, thus facilitating other scholarly projects.

Intended Learning Outcomes

Students will acquire practical experience of curatorial processes, and expert knowledge of the subject-matter of the exhibition. They will develop techniques of independent research as well as enhancing their ability to work in a team. The task of preparing texts for the catalogue and display will enhance their research and writing skills.

Teaching Information

Group meetings and individual supervisions.

Assessment Information

Summative assessment is 5,000 essay

Reading and References

To be decided when the students have chosen the exhibition theme.