Museum and Cultural Heritage Studies Certificate

Museum and Cultural Heritage Studies Undergraduate Certificate

The undergraduate Museum and Cultural Heritage Studies Certificate provides students with a broad background in museum and cultural heritage studies and a solid foundation for pursuing advanced education and careers in the fields of Museum Studies or Cultural Heritage Studies. The certificate and its curriculum prepare students for entry-level careers in museums, cultural heritage sites, national parks and heritage areas, and similar venues that promote public outreach and education.

Core courses introduce students to the history of museums, cultural heritage management, administration, curation, artifact handling, collections management, interpretation, exhibitions, ethics, and working with indigenous communities.

Anthropology and Geography students (left to right) Morgan Wilson, Jessie McCaig, Karlie Dorland, and Kit Kelly in front of the exhibition they designed in ANTH 462
Anthropology and Geography students (left to right) Morgan Wilson, Jessie McCaig, Karlie Dorland, and Kit Kelly in front of the exhibition they designed in ANTH 462

Undergraduate Certificate Offers Education through Curation

The undergraduate Museum and Cultural Heritage Studies Certificate program, launched Fall 2020, prepares students for jobs and careers in museums and education centers and at cultural heritage areas, including national parks and historic sites. The certificate is the first undergraduate certificate of its kind in the state of Colorado. 

Program Requirements

Required courses

  • ANTH 240 Museum and Cultural Heritage Studies
  • ANTH 462 Anthropology Curation and Exhibition Methods

Required internship or practicum (select one of following)

  • ANTH 486 Practicum
  • ANTH 487 Internship
  • ART 487 Internship
  • ETST 487 Internship
  • HIST 487 Internship

Elective courses (select one of following)

  • ANTH 422/ SOC 422 Comparative Legal Systems
  • ANTH 456 Archaeology and the Public
  • ANTH 478/ HIST 478 Heritage Resource Management
  • ART 496H Group Study: Art History
  • ETST 441 Indigenous Knowledges
  • HIST 479 Practice of Public History

Students who enroll in the Museum and Cultural Heritage Studies Certificate will complete four courses and 12 credits with an opportunity for interdisciplinary scholarship. The curriculum includes two required courses; an internship or practicum; and an elective course from a set of classes across several departments within the College of Liberal Arts.

Students organizing applications for the program




Note: Courses used to satisfy requirements outside this certificate cannot count toward completing this certificate. If using a course toward major/concentration/minor/honors requirements, the student must take a different course for this certificate.

Program Courses

Museum & Cultural Heritage Studies

ANTH 240

ANTH 240 offers a detailed overview of the field of contemporary museum studies. The course introduces students to the history of museums and to current museum principles, organization, research, curation, collections management, interpretation, exhibit development, ethics, and historic preservation. Emphasis is placed on defining the role of liberal arts and natural history in today’s museums. ANTH 240 is an excellent opportunity for students interested in exploring museum studies careers.

Practicum in Anthropology

ANTH 486

One of the practical, hands-on opportunities for students pursuing the certificate is the ‘Practicum in Anthropology.' Students complete 90 hours of work under the direction and supervision of the Archaeological Collections Coordinator in the CSU Archaeological Repository.  Currently students are working on a curation and rehousing project of the entire collection.  Students will be taught hands-on curation skills, learn best practices for handling artifacts, and have the opportunity to work with the collections database.

Anthropology Curation & Exhibition Methods

ANTH 462

The course will address current methods and ethics in museum curation, conservation, collections management policies and procedures, exhibition development. ANTH 462 also addresses tasks associated with managing, preserving and displaying anthropological collections, including both artifacts and their associated documentation. The course provides students with practical, hands-on experience in artifact care, management, preservation, and exhibition development.

Internship in Anthropology

ANTH 487

The ‘Internship in Anthropology’ offers students an opportunity to gain practical experience in a professional museum or similar setting.  Through hands-on work under the direction and supervision of a museum or heritage professional, students will gain an understanding of the principles of museum work and the day-to-day operations of such organizations.  Students in the Anthropology and Geography Department have completed opportunities for credit at the following institutions:

  • History Colorado (Denver)
  • Fort Collins Museum of Discovery
  • Loveland Museum Gallery
  • CSU Archaeological Repository

CSU Archaeological Repository

The Archaeological Repository of Colorado State University is a curation facility that manages the archaeological artifacts and associated paperwork and images of the Colorado State University’s Department of Anthropology and other archaeological collections from public and private lands in Colorado obtained in the course of cultural resource management (CRM) and field schools.  Many of the archaeological collections held in the repository are from Northern Colorado and represent over 13,000 years of cultural history in the region. The collections are available to descendant communities, researchers, university students, and museums interested in Colorado prehistory and early history for visits, research, and artifact loans.

DevanGreen repository



“Working in the Archaeology Repository has been valuable beyond words to my development and growth as a person, a student and as an archaeologist.” – Kit Kelly


"During my time as an assistant at the Repository at CSU, I gained a deeper appreciation and understanding for handling artifacts and the process taken by researchers and museum curators when cataloging and classifying objects." – Nick Gage

“By working in the repository, I have been exposed to essential skills when it comes to the science behind museums.” – Karlie Dorland

“This experience helped me in pursuing my future goals, because now I have a greater understanding of what I am able to do with my degree, and ways in which I can further my degree beyond a BA.” – Elaine van Jaarsveld

“When I initially set foot in the repository, I was amazed by the extensive collections present. I had no idea that CSU had so many amazing artifacts. Being able to open boxes that hadn’t been looked in for decades was incredibly exciting.” – Madeline Kunkel

“The practicum has made museum work more tangible for me. I believe that I could make a positive change in museums and can conceptualize what I would want to do while working for a museum.” – Alaura Hopper

CSU Land Acknowledgment

Colorado State University acknowledges, with respect, that the land we are on today is the traditional and ancestral homelands of the Arapaho, Cheyenne, and Ute Nations and peoples. This was also a site of trade, gathering, and healing for numerous other Native tribes. We recognize the Indigenous peoples as original stewards of this land and all the relatives within it. As these words of acknowledgment are spoken and heard, the ties Nations have to their traditional homelands are renewed and reaffirmed.

CSU is founded as a land-grant institution, and we accept that our mission must encompass access to education and inclusion. And, significantly, that our founding came at a dire cost to Native Nations and peoples whose land this University was built upon. This acknowledgment is the education and inclusion we must practice in recognizing our institutional history, responsibility, and commitment.

What is the land acknowledgment statement?

CSU’s land acknowledgment is a statement crafted by a variety of Indigenous faculty and staff, as well as other officials at CSU. The statement recognizes the long history of Native peoples and nations that lived and stewarded the land where the university now resides. The land acknowledgment statement also maintains the connection Native people and nations still have to this land.



Professor Jason LaBelle

Director, Center for Mountain and Plains Archaeology
Curator, Archaeological Repository of Colorado State University (AR-CSU)