Courses tailored to deliver industry learning have been offered by the V&A for three years. Having steadily gained momentum over that time, 2019 has seen the organisation significantly ramp up the volume and variety of content available.

Whether seeking guidance across a broad area, or niche support on topics such as curation, audience development, forging new revenue streams, organising private hire events, and developing presentation skills, the V&A’s Professional Development Courses have a plethora of subjects to choose from.

“The V&A has always had at its heart a mission to educate and inspire its visitors,” noted Lucy Allen, Senior Producer, V&A Academy. “The professional development programme run by the V&A Academy brings the skills and knowledge within the museum to life. The forthcoming programme includes half-day, full-day and intensive one-week courses covering a range of subjects including interpretation, conservation, public speaking, exhibition development and curation.

“Each course provides the opportunity for museum professionals to develop the skills they need to work in today’s museum sector. Whether you are at the start of your career, or are well-established in your field, there is something for everyone.”

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Caring for and restoring collections is one of many areas in which V&A Professional Development Courses share the institution's specialist expertise © Victoria & Albert Museum, London

What’s on

Inside the Museum: The V&A’s Museum Skills Course offers a 12-week deep dive programme for anyone seeking to get a firm grasp on what gives the V&A its global reputation for industry excellence. The extensive agenda is designed for those seeking to kick start a career in the cultural sectors, whether a recent graduate or someone just setting out on their journey in the industry.

The content draws upon the learnings of in-house case studies and individual tutored sessions from V&A specialists on topics such as; collections management; research; learning and interpretation; public programming; marketing; exhibitions; and audience engagement. Each week will focus on a specific area of museum operations, with senior V&A figures from each discipline contributing to the learning of participants.

For small and medium museums, in a time of unparalleled difficulty to secure funding, both the How to Organise Corporate Hire and Private Events and Generating New Income Streams courses focus on methods of maximising the financial potential of cultural institutions. These courses examine how to get the most from the space and resources museums already possess, as well as implementing new and innovative approaches to ticketing, membership, retail and catering.

A new addition to the V&A’s course line-up is Collections Care and Management, a five-day programme open to participants from around the world who are looking to explore the key aspects of caring for and managing a collection. Sessions will include masterclasses on topics such as the life cycle of the museum object, developing collections policies, due diligence and provenance research, copyright, object handling, and courier training.

A list of all the courses currently open for applications are available here.

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