Career development

Here at the School of Museum Studies in Leicester we consider career development to be fundamental to all aspects of our teaching and curriculum. Collaborative working with a wide range of museums, galleries and other cultural organisations is critical to the development and delivery of all of our courses. This approach enables us to ensure our graduates meet the constantly changing needs of the sector with all programmes providing our students with the skills and knowledge to move into a variety of careers or further postgraduate study.

In 2010 the School won a prestigious national award for 'Most outstanding Departmental Administrative Team'. This win was largely founded upon the innovative work of School staff involved in running the Jobs Desk, work placement scheme, and high quality student support.

Jobs Desk

The School of Museum Studies hosts the UK's most extensive listing source for jobs in museums and galleries, the Jobs Desk. This service is provided free of charge to the public and is further evidence of the School's committment to the sector and the career development of its graduates.

Distance Learning Masters

The majority of our distance learning students are already employed in some capacity within museums and galleries so really value the opportunity to apply their newly gained skills and knowledge directly into their workplace. Learning becomes inextricably linked to their own practice and encourages an informed and creative approach to problem solving. These students also take advantage of our network of 20 Associate Tutors who are all museum professionals working in the sector.

A current project within the School concerns the re-examination of the provision of career related activities for distance learners, with a view to developing new and enhanced activites in the near future.

Campus-based Masters

Those that choose to study for a Masters on campus benefit from a wide range of initiatives and activities intrinsic to the taught curriculum that thoroughly prepare our graduates for the workplace. These include:

  • A series of taught sessions and workshops to enhance professional development
  • A programme of study visits to museums and galleries around the UK (6-8 per year), which help familiarise our students with a variety of working environments and organisations within the museum and gallery sector. These study visits are characterised by meeting a wide range of museum and gallery professionals
  • Over 30 museum professionals per year who visit Leicester to give lectures on a wide range of topics and who are all able to offer their expertise about employability and careers within the sector
  • An 8 week, full-time work placement offered by one of the over 200 members of the LUMEN network of museums and galleries. Student selection of a work placement host is supported by a Work Placement Marketplace where representatives of a number of museums visit the School to promote their museums.
  • Visits from Leicester alumni who share their own personal experiences of career development

All of these activities combined lead to our excellent graduate destination results.


PhD students develop a range of skills during their studies with us. At Induction each student is encouraged to think about developing a portfolio of skills and experiences to maximise their chances of employment after graduation. In addition to the major task of refining research skills and writing their PhD thesis students are advised to write papers for conference and publication. Annually they work collaboratively to edit their own journal Museological Review and organise an international conference. Our PhD students also organise the Think Tank programme for the MA students and assist with second marking. Career paths include lectureships at Universities internationally, including Manchester, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Korea, as well as various museum posts in museums in the UK and beyond. 


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In the Spotlight

Artist and Activist

Ou Ning

speaks about his work

Ou Ning - Artist

Museum Studies Building,

16th November 2017, 7-8.30 pm

Book your place here

AHRC Midlands3Cities

PhD Funding for UK/EU Students

The Midlands3Cities Doctoral Training Partnership is awarding up to 80 Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) PhD studentships to UK/EU applicants for October 2018 entry.

Funding application deadline: Monday 15 January 2018.

Find out more about M3C studentships in Museum Studies.

ESRC Midlands Graduate School

PhD Funding for social science research in Museum Studies

The Midlands Graduate School Doctoral Training Partnership is awarding Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) PhD studentships to applicants for October 2018 entry. Funding application deadline: Thursday 18 January 2018.

Find out more about MGS studentships in Museum Studies.

Athena Swan Bronze