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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Edinburgh College of Art : History of Art

Undergraduate Course: History of Art Work Placement (HIAR10157)

Course Outline
SchoolEdinburgh College of Art CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 10 (Year 3 Undergraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThe History of Art Work Placement gives students experience of applying and developing their art-historical knowledge and skills in contexts beyond the University. Students will be placed with host institutions across the visual arts, heritage and cultural sectors in Edinburgh, and will contribute to the education and community outreach activities of these institutions. Students will receive regular one-on-one supervision from the Course Organiser, alongside class meetings with a representative of the University Careers Service.
Course description The History of Art Work Placement gives students the opportunity to work in an arts, heritage or cultural institution in Edinburgh as part of their academic curriculum at the University of Edinburgh. Students will contribute to the education and community outreach work of their host institution. This work will vary considerably from place to place, depending on the type of institution hosting the placement, as well as the interests and skills of the student. Responsibilities may include organizing events, producing learning materials, leading tours and education sessions and writing exhibition interpretation. The details of the work to be undertaken on placement will be agreed by the Course Organiser, the host institution and the student at the outset of the course. Students will have a nominated mentor within their host institution who will offer the student advice and support throughout their time on placement.

Placements will operate in Semester 2, with students spending between 10 and 12 days (2 days per week) at their host institution. The placement activity will be supplemented by two hour-long class meetings in Weeks 1 and 9, run in collaboration with the Careers Service. The first of these meetings will introduce the Work Placements, and Careers Service will offer advice on making the most of students' time on placement. In the second meeting Careers Service will advise on students' future work plans, their CVs, how to continue developing their professional skills etc.

Alongside seminars, three meetings with the Course Organiser will be arranged, each lasting up to 30 minutes. The first, at the start of the semester, will introduce the student to their host institution, and will provide an opportunity to agree the content of the placement. Midway through the semester, a feedforward meeting will focus on the progress of the placement, and planning for the summative assessment essay. A final meeting at the end of the semester (around Week 10) with the host institution, the student and the Course Organiser, will provide an opportunity to reflect upon the placement.

The number of placements will vary each year, but typically around 10 will be available, which will be publicised to students in Week 1 of Semester 1. Students wishing to do a work placement will be asked to write an application, to be submitted in Week 4 of Semester 1, giving their three preferred placement options and a short statement detailing the reasoning behind their choices, and what they hope to gain from a work placement. The Course Organiser, in consultation with host institutions, will then allocate students across the available placements based on applications and in some cases a short interview with the host institution. Should demand be too high for the number of placements available, students will be selected based on their applications and the availability of their preferred placements, with those not selected instead taking Art History: Texts, Objects, Institutions, Part Two.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Students MUST have passed: History of Art 2 (HIAR08012)
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Demonstrate an understanding and critical awareness of the institutional landscape of the cultural sector.
  2. Apply academic knowledge of art history to projects in a professional cultural sector work environment.
  3. Take initiative and work effectively, under guidance, in a professional cultural sector organisation.
  4. Effectively communicate information about art to diverse audiences, both in writing and verbally.
  5. Critically reflect on your own professional skills and aptitudes, and understand how best to further develop these.
Reading List
Baverstock, A., How to Get a Job in a Museum or Art Gallery (London: Bloomsbury Publishing, 2010)
Bennett, T., 'The Exhibitionary Complex', New Formations no.4 (Spring 1988)
Duncan, C., Civilizing Rituals: Inside Public Art Museums (London: Routledge, 1995)
Thornton, S., Seven Days in the Art World (London: Granta, 2008)
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Independent research
Independent learning and development
Commercial / Professional / Situational awareness
Team working
Enterprise and Entrepreneurship
Interpersonal skills
Course organiserDr Lucy Weir
Tel: (0131 6)51 8500
Course secretaryMrs Sue Cavanagh
Tel: (0131 6)51 1460
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