First, a huge thank you to everyone who’s volunteered to write a profile for their graduate school! We’ve had over 15 responses so far, though we’ll happily accept more. Check out Tuesday’s post for more information and e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like to help!
Today’s post will be taking a brief look at some of the professional journals that deal with museums, museology, and informal education. It wasn’t until graduate school and the writing of my thesis that I became aware of just how many professional journals are publishing research into museum issues. There are lots of groups and blogs that have book clubs (and we considered that here too), but fewer places talk about journals and articles. Given the potential impact that this research could have on museum practice, I think it’s time to raise EMP awareness of these resources for two reasons.
First, if you’re not in a formal program right now you may not have easy access to things like JSTOR and WorldCat, fantastic search engines for scholarly literature. Public libraries in large cities sometimes offer limited access, but you’re unlikely to be aware of some of these publications without something driving you to do research. That doesn’t make their findings any less important though, especially for those of us writing grants or designing evaluation techniques.
Second, the field has a great need for people who are comfortable with both performing and publishing about research they’re doing. One of the first steps in that is being familiar with publications and how they work, what their format is like, diversity of research topics. I know many EMPs who don’t feel particularly confident about making strong contributions to scholarly literature, but my hope is that through exposure every EMP will some day feel comfortable with the idea of contributing to knowledge about museums.
To that end, I’ve compiled a list of some of the more popular museum journals, as well as ones that I know about that might not be on peoples’ radars. It’s a far from thorough list, especially in the art realm (which is not my expertise), but it’s a start.
Collections (Rowman and Littlefield)
Museum Management and Curatorship (Taylor and Francis)
International Journal of Arts Management (École des Hautes Études Commerciales)
Journal of Museum Education (Left Coast Press)
Museums and Society (University of Leicester)
Heritage and Society (Left Coast Press)
Museum History Journal (Left Coast Press)
Public Understanding of Science (SagePub)
What other journals do you find helpful or enlightening? Please share them in the comments section!