Care of Stained Glass class photo

Collections Care Core Curriculum

 

The Collections Care Program offers hands-on intensive training for individuals working with collections in museums, libraries, archives, historic home museums, historic sites, private collections and other collecting institutions. These classes are considered essential in providing an informational foundation for anyone working with museum collections.  Through these courses, participants are able to better understand of the nature of materials and the cause and effects of their deterioration. The curriculum is designed to address the identification, care, and maintenance of a wide range of collection categories and materials. Many beginning level courses do not require previous experience and are appropriate for beginning professionals, college students, volunteers and others who wish to learn more about the preservation and museum field.  More advanced courses are also offered for mid-career professionals who wish to acquire a deeper understanding of a specific preservation and/or museum topic.


See class listing below

Collections Care

The Collections Care courses are intended to meet the needs of curatorial, collections, and technical staff involved with specialized collections care responsibilities. These courses are more specific and focus on one material type or one area of museum operations. They provide detailed hands-on study of the specific subject.


See class listing below core curriculum listing

CORE CURRICULUM COURSE LISTING

Policy Writing for Small Museums

Computer Software for Collections Management

Digitizing Museum Collections

Emergency Preparedness, Response, & Recovery

Grant Writing for Collections Care: NEH and IMLS Grants

Grant Writing for Collections Care: Private Foundations

Integrated Pest Management

Introduction to Organic & Inorganic Materials

The Museum Environment

Packing and Shipping Workshop

Photographing Museum Collections

Photoshop for Collections Management

Principles of Collections Management

COLLECTIONS CARE COURSE LISTING

Artifact Care

Care of Archaelogical Collections

Care of Basketry Collections

Care of Clocks and Historic Timepieces-


Books, Archives, Paper, Photographs, and Paintings

Book Collections Maintenance & Repair

Textiles

 

  • Collections Administration, Development, and Operations

Copyright: The Archivist and the Law

Certified Interpretation Guide Program

Exhibits

Basic Installation of Art and Artifact

Specialized Matting Techniques for Paper Artifacts

Design and Construction of Mounts for Exhibits

COURSE DESCRIPTIONS

Basic Installation of Art and Artifacts

Instructor: Walter Wilson

Dates: July 14-17, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $930

This workshop will introduce the principles of art and artifact installation. Topics covered include hardware and tools; museum and gallery installation standards; case and vitrine installation; commercial and residential installations; ceiling, masonry and heavy installations; and job site etiquette. Daily hands on practice will introduce a variety of installation techniques and scenarios.

Participants are encouraged to bring examples of installation problems for discussion and analysis

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Book Collections Maintenance & Repair
Instructor: Miriam Nelson

Date: July 30-August 2, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $940

This class is a hands-on workshop for those responsible for the care, maintenance, and repair of circulating book collections. The class is of particular relevance to those professionals seeking an in-house option to outsourcing some repair and enclosure treatments to a commercial bindery. Topics covered in this course will include the criteria used in decision making concerning the triage and treatment of damaged books, an overview of the necessary equipment and materials used in the treatment of damaged books, and an introduction to the conservation ethics applicable to circulating collections. Repair treatments covered in this course will include hinge tightening, flat paper mending, tip-ins, spine replacement, recasing, and new casing. The types of protective enclosures covered in this course will include pockets, custom and manufactured binders, wrapper-type enclosures, and cloth-covered clamshell boxes.

Participants are encouraged to bring books for analysis, treatment, and discussion.

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Care of Archaeological Collections

Instructors: Glenna Nielsen

Date: July 31-August 2, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $875

Archaeological research  creates data/ objects that come from differing physical environments acting on the objects over years, centuries or thousands of years.    Care of these objects begins in the field, and continues in  the repository or museum.  Care must be taken to preserve the object, and associated  information.

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Care of Basketry Collections

Instructor: Julia Fenn

Dates: Offered again in 2015

Cost:

This course looks at various approaches to keeping basketry of any given shape, color or fiber-type looking its perky best with the least effort and cost. Coping with damaged basketry in collections will be addressed during practical afternoon workshops.

There will be discussions and demonstrations of how traditional fibers, weaves and structures affect the long term resilience and strength of different types of basketry, so that the participants will be able to recognize which kinds are most vulnerable to premature aging or infirmities such as slumping, embrittlement, splitting, unraveling, snagging, discoloration, or attack by living organisms. Some unusual baskets will also be assessed. As a result, participants will be able identify potentially susceptible baskets in their own collections and be able to assign scarce storage resources and simple but effective supports where they are most needed.  

The afternoon workshops focus on methods of minimizing and controlling damage using actual examples of baskets which have been squashed, soiled or otherwise defiled.  Participants will practice and assess basic cleaning, reshaping methods and devise support techniques suitable for compromised basketry in crowded storage conditions.

Participants are encouraged to bring their own images or baskets to these sessions if they would like to concentrate on any specific issues.

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Care of Clocks and Historic Timepieces

Instructor: Gregg Perry

This  class is designed for collectors and museum personnel who care for collections of clocks and pocketwatches.

Topics covered in this workshop include: environmental effects of corrosion on movements and dials; how to access movements for lubrication; how to make adjustments of timing and beat; and best practices for moving, setting- up and displaying timepieces.  Students will also learn about movement servicing and to know when is it necessary; conservation versus restoration; and requirements to get the timepiece back in running order. Hands-on exercises will include disassembling a time and strike movement, cleaning and reassembling it. Bronze doré, casting, silvering and basic metallurgy will be touched upon.

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Introduction to Historic Firearms

Instructor: David Kennedy

Date: July 23, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $195/ $105 if taken with Care of Historic Firearms

While many museums have firearms in their collections, most museum staff have little or no training or experience with firearms. In an attempt to aid in this education, this one-day course will cover basic firearms anatomy and terminology and safe handling of firearms. Several breakdowns of firearms will be presented. Students will learn basic assembly/disassembly techniques and research methods to aid in this activity.

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Care of Historic Firearms

Instructor: David Kennedy

Date: July 24-26, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $885


This course will cover information and training necessary to managing firearms within a museum collection. Participants will learn identification techniques, legal ramifications, storage methods, care and basic conservation techniques, and exhibition issues peculiar to firearms. Tours of nearby museums will allow the class to view firearms on exhibit and in storage.


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Care and Identification of Digital Prints

Instructor:  Ryan Boatright

Date: August 14-16, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $875

This 3 day course will offer instruction on the history, identification, and preservation of digital prints. History, technology, identification, and preservation will be covered through a mix of presentations and hands-on sessions. Participants will walk away with a clear understanding of the keys to identifying the most predominant digital print processes: electrophotographic, dye-sublimation, Inkjet, and digitally exposed silver based prints. Participants will also learn about various contemporary mounting and finishing techniques, including pertinent information regarding their stability.


A course binder will be provided to each student with references to identification tools and resources, process timelines, reference articles, and all classroom presentations.


Participants are encouraged to bring digital prints for discussion.

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Care of Book Collections
Instructor: Betsy Palmer-Eldridge

Designed for museum, library, and/or archival staff who have little to no technical experience with book materials and structure, this course focuses on 19th to 21st century leather, cloth, and paper bindings and will cover a range of commonly encountered problems. Included in this course will be an overview of bound structures and their material composition; understanding agents of deterioration; identifying deterioration and formulating appropriate solutions; a review of protective housing for damaged books; review of commonly occurring maintenance issues; guidelines for handling, storing, and exhibiting bound volumes; and an introduction to risk assessment and disaster recovery procedures.

Participants are encouraged to bring bound samples for analysis and discussion.

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Care of Historic Scrapbooks

Instructor:  Jennifer Hain Teper

Date: September 19-20, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $620

This course offering is a combination of lecture and hands-on workshop for those responsible for the care, maintenance, and repair of historic scrapbook collections. This class will present the history of scrapbooks and their use as well as an overview of common formats, common types of materials preserved in scrapbooks, and most frequent preservation challenges.  Tools and methodologies to assist collection managers in
making preservation decisions regarding scrapbooks will also be presented.  Hands-on repair approaches for scrapbook preservation will include stabilization with mylar sleeves while allowing for access to booklets and multi-page documents, removing artifacts from various scrapbook page formats, and stabilizing artifacts in-situ, as well as repair of various binding structures and support pages.

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Care of Leather and Fur

Instructor: Julia Fenn

Date: Next Offered in 2015

The emphasis in this course will be on identifying various types of skin, leather and furs commonly found in museum collections and understanding how different tanning and preservation methods affect the properties of the resulting leather artifacts. In particular, their resistance to moisture, industrial pollution, shrinkage, insects, creasing, soiling, stretching and shedding which is so variable in different types of leathers and furs. Other significant issues such as the age and type of the source animal (or bird), use, manufacturing techniques,  waterlogged leather, residual lubricants, adhesives, stains and endangered species will also be discussed.

Participants will handle samples of different types of skins and carry out simple identification tests. They will expand their skills in recognizing and dealing with common problems such as bloom, hardening, spue, and mould. On the last day they will assess a collection of leather clothing and artifacts so that they can design compatible support systems to counteract the particular weaknesses of the chosen artifacts.

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Care of Metal Artifacts

Next Dates to be Determined

Metals are ubiquitous in museums. They can be found in historic, decorative arts, numismatic, military, religious, municipal, outdoor art, archaeological, agricultural, industrial, architectural, science and technology collections. This workshop focuses on the nine metals most commonly found in collections: aluminum, copper, gold, iron, lead, nickel, silver, tin, and zinc. Topics covered include: the properties and identification of metals; a discussion of common corrosion products; cleaning and stabilizing of corroded objects; environments that cause corrosion; proper handling; hazards; choosing safe storage and display materials; and treatment options.. The course will include both lectures and hands on lab activities. A field trip to a local museum is anticipated.  Participants are asked to come prepared to give a short presentation about metal objects in their collection outlining metal-related problems.  Small metal objects are also welcome for the lab sessions.

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Care of Paintings
Instructor: Cynthia Kuniej Berry

Date: August 4-6, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $930

Course participants will learn basic structure of easel paintings; causes of deterioration; examination and identification of damages; condition reporting; and handling and display standards for paintings. This year’s course will provide hands on experience examining, condition reporting and re-framing portraits at a local small museum.  This course does not cover conservation treatment.

Participants are encouraged to formulate questions and/or bring images that represent painting-related issues their institutions are facing.

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Care of Paper Artifacts
Instructor: Susan Russick

Date: September 22-26, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $1050

This course is an introduction to book and paper conservation designed for conservation technicians and others who wish to have a theoretical preservation framework and basic hands-on treatment experience.  Topics covered include a review of paper making, techniques of media application, degradation patterns, and preventative preservation care.  Conservation treatments covered will include surface cleaning, humidification and flattening, various mending methods, non-aqueous deacidification, currently accepted materials for housings and treatments, and treatment documentation.  Mending of rare flat paper and books using Japanese tissue and wheat starch paste will be emphasized. The class has been extended to a new 5-day format to allow additional time for paper production and media discussion, a demonstration of aqueous washing and deacidification, and more student treatment projects.
Participants will receive a tool kit to use with the option to purchase, or may bring their own tools.

Participants are encouraged to bring examples of specific problems for examination and possible treatment.

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Care of Photographic Collections I
Instructor: Gary Albright

Date: August 4-6, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $860

The focus of this course is on the preventative care of historical and contemporary photographs. Topics to be covered include the history and evolution of photography, agents of photographic deterioration, the stability and deterioration of each type of photograph, examination and identification of different photographic processes, and guidelines and standards for storage, exhibition, and use of photographic collections. The course will discuss all major photographic processes, positive and negative, used throughout the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. These will include daguerreotypes, ambrotypes, tintypes, salted paper prints, albumen prints, collodion prints, carbon prints, platinum prints, gelatin prints, glass plate negatives, and film-based negatives.

Participants are encouraged to bring items for discussion and examination.

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Care of Photographic Collections II
Instructor: Gary Albright

Offered next in 2015

Prerequisite: Care of Photographic Collections I

This course will focus on the importance of conservation assessments as a preservation tool for photograph collections. Participants will visit a nearby institution to examine photographs and access preservation needs. In preparation for this assessment, it will be necessary to review applicable material from Care of Photographs I, such as the identification of photographic processes, their deterioration, and their preservation. During the assessment participants will access storage and environmental conditions, examine how the collection is used, and them set conservation priorities. The course will also address several related conservation issues: surface cleaning of photographs in preparation for exhibition, the proper mounting of photographs for exhibition, and the history, identification, and deterioration of color photographs.

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Care of Photographic Collections III
Instructor: Gary Albright

Date: August 7-9, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $860

Prerequisite: Care of Photographic Collections I

This course will reinforce and supplement the material covered in Care of Photographic Collections I. The class will include both lecture and practicum sessions. Course work will focus on: reviewing the unique characteristics of the various photographic processes; special stabilization problems related to early cased objects, glass plate negatives, and photographic albums; cleaning of negatives and cased images; solutions to commonly encountered preservation issues; parameters which determine the treatment options for gelatin photographs; and an understanding of digital images and their preservation.

For discussion in class, each participant is asked to bring a photographic preservation dilemma from their collection. This could be a single photograph with special problems, a sampling from a group of photographs with related problems, a slide or PowerPoint presentation which illustrates preservation concerns within the institution. They may be focused on storage, access, or administrative issues.

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Care of Plastics

Instructor: Julia Fenn

Date:  September 17-19, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $885

Plastics now play a significant role in museums, both as support materials and as artifacts, especially in archival, military, textile and toy collections. However collections containing plastics present unusual and challenging collections care issues; controlled environments and archival storage materials recommended for the protection of museum collections may actually accelerate the decay of certain historic plastics. The resulting damage can be severe, irreversible and costly – contaminating and degrading other artifacts and storage cabinets.

 This 3 day course focuses on practical, cost-effective solutions to the problem and offers the latest updates on preventive care for different plastics in the context of the collections of which they are an integral part. Participants will develop strategies for extending the lifespan of artifacts made from incompatible plastic combinations and for coping with plastics which have already degraded.  

Practical sessions include designing storage solutions, selecting safe cleaning methods, monitoring for corrosive gases etc on a selection of specific artifacts. Participants may choose to solve problems from their own collections if they prefer.

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Certified Interpretative Guide Program

Instructor: Donald McLean

Date:  June 23-27, 2014

Cost:

Tuition: $725-includes 6 nights lodging & 2 meals per day during workshop

Materials Fee: $140 for NAI non-members-includes certification

                             $90 for NAI members-includes certification

                             $10 for no certification

The Certified Interpretive Guide program is designed for anyone who delivers interpretive programs to the public. It combines both the theoretical foundations of the profession with practical skills in delivering quality interpretive programming to visitors.


This 32-hour course includes:
• history, definition, and principles of interpretation
• making your programs purposeful, enjoyable, relevant, organized, and thematic
• using tangible objects to connect audiences to intangible ideas and universal concepts in   

   interpretive programs
• presentation and communication skills
• certification requirements (50-question literature review; program outline; 10-minute  

   presentation)
• all materials, workbook, and CIG course textbook


Requirements for the CIG Course
Anyone age 16 or over with a desire to increase their knowledge and skills related to interpretation may participate. Membership in NAI is not required, but NAI members may pay a discounted fee to participate in the program. You can also elect to take the training without
becoming certified. You do not have to be an NAI member to take the training course.

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Identification of Plastics

Instructor: Julia Fenn

Date:  September September 20, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $195/ $105 if taken with Care of Plastics

There are many different plastics which look very similar but which have distinctly different properties and weaknesses. It is a helpful part of Museum Collections Management to be able to:-

 - identify potentially harmful plastics, and avoid interactions which will damage the collections – or the staff

 - verify quickly whether unknown plastics, already in use as mounts or storage containers, are actually safe as used

 - confirm, before it is too late, that new orders (films, gloves, specimen boxes etc.) are actually made from the polymer specified on the order form – surprisingly often, they are not. 

This one day course will concentrate on simple, quick methods both destructive and non-destructive, which can be used to identify various common plastics. The emphasis will be on obtaining the maximum amount of information with minimal sampling.  Participants should be aware that some tests involve small quantities of dangerous chemicals as well as flame tests and pyrolysis.

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Care of Stained and Leaded Glass
Instructor: Diane Roberts Rousseau

The goal of this course is to increase awareness of conservation techniques which maintain the structural integrity of leaded glass while increasing the aesthetic beauty of these objects. Specific topics covered are the standards for documentation, handling, storage, exhibition, and packing for transport; the structural and chemical nature of stained and leaded glass; safety and health considerations; identification of vulnerable objects; and the ethics of conservation treatment; photography and the use of Corpus Vitrearum charting practices; agents of deterioration, such as chemical instability, poor firing or annealing, or human intervention; and techniques of reversing previous repairs and stabilization and treatment of recent damage.

Participants will get hands-on experience with stained/leaded glass materials through instructor-supervised projects. Any participant wanting to bring their own piece(s) to the course need advance approval from their instructor.

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Care of Textiles I
Instructor: Harold Mailand

Date: August 20-23, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $1145

This course will familiarize participants with the chemical and physical structure of textile fibers; the causes and effects of deterioration; environmental standards and standards for storage, handling, and exhibiting both flat and formed textiles; descriptive terminology and simple tests for fiber identification; properties and effects of finishes; ethical limitations and considerations in the treatment of textile pieces including aqueous cleaning. Hands-on practicum will include handling and examination techniques, surface cleaning, and correct methods for textile storage.

Participants are encouraged to bring sturdy, representative textile samples for examination and analysis.

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Care of Textiles II
Instructor: Harold Mailand

Date: August 25-27, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $995

Building on the material covered in Care of Textiles I, this class will combine lecture, demonstrations, and hands-on experience in currently accepted techniques for curatorial care of textiles. Course work will include: review of conservation ethics and examination techniques covered in the introductory course; documenting condition; determining and documenting the causes of damage to textiles; introduction to fiber microscopy; techniques for the display and storage of fragile textiles; non-intrusive mounting techniques for the display of flat textiles; and basic repair of structural damage, including the selection of appropriate mending materials.

Participants are encouraged to bring representative samples of non-accessioned textiles for use in workshop sessions.

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Care of Textiles III
Instructor: Harold Mailand

Date: August 28-30, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $995

This three-day class will combine reading, lecture, demonstrations, and hands-on experience to review and apply currently accepted techniques for curatorial care of textiles and costumes. Course work builds on experiences from Textiles I and II. This will include the review of conservation ethics; examination techniques; documentation procedures; and emergency preparedness and reaction. Three days will be dedicated for guided treatments of a textile object. This may include: basic wet cleaning; basic repair of structural damage, including the selection of appropriate materials; and aesthetic compensation for loss.

Participants are to bring “Stitch Sampler” from Care of Textiles I. Participants are also encouraged to bring other objects for discussion and treatments. Please discuss objects and treatments with instructor in advance.

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Policy Writing for Small Museum
Instructor: Linda Eppich

Date: August 7-9, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $870

Participants will develop a collections management policy (CMP), or edit an existing policy, for their museums.  Guidelines concerning deaccession and loans will be emphasized.  This exercise will occur during the first part of the course.  The other policies/plans to be

investigated might include: long-range preservation plans, care and handling policies, codes of ethics for collections, collections plans,or any policy of interest regarding museum collections.  Legal issues concerning museum collections will be discussed, including appraisals and IRS reporting. Bibliography and source materials will be provided to participants.

Participants who already have such policies are encouraged to bring them, along with the organization’s mission statement.

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Copyright: The Archivist and the Law

Instructor:  William Maher

Date: September 19-20, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee $595

Offered in partnership with the Society of American Archivists; course is eligible to receive 1.5 CEUs or 10 ARCs. This workshop provides a basis for the administration of copyright in daily archival work. One of the profession’s acknowledged experts, William Maher, presents updates to issues that should be tracked in the current age of information commerce

-including an assessment of the bad news and the good news in the Supreme Court's Eldred decision.

Workshop objectives include recognizing the complex issues relating to authors’, owners’, and users’ rights in intellectual property; obtaining grounds in the historical rationale for copyright law, including major legislative and judicial developments; discovering the relevance of U.S. federal law to archives and manuscript collections; examining the current law; and

Participants are invited to submit specific questions related to copyright up to two weeks prior to the workshop start date

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Computer Software for Collections Management

Instructor: Terry Birkett

Date: TBA

The focus of this course is on the process of artifact cataloguing basics; data standards and conventions; cataloguing goals; and database types and features.  We will review commercially available collections management software and techniques for incorporating basic media files including photographs, audio and video.  As part of the class exercises we will create a relational database that will incorporate the desired components.

Participants will be contacted before start of class to provide samples of their collections records and preferences for selection of software to be reviewed in class.

Basic knowledge of computers strongly recommended. Participants should bring own laptop if possible.

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Creating Traveling Museum Kits for Community Outreach
Instructor: Dan Brinkmeier

This course will cover:
-practical instruction in the development of educational objectives for the use of “real” hands-on objects specimens used in museum school outreach programs
-theory and practice in the development of learning objectives and interpretive techniques for the use of real objects and specimens
-development and design of interactive games and activities included in educational learning kits
-development and design of visual print materials such as teachers guidelines, instructional cards, etc.
-administrative issues in the loaning of educational materials to the public
-issues in the use of real objects and specimens with the public
-case studies in the use of teaching kits and loan programs at U.S. museums
-general theory and discussion of outreach programs and related support media

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Design and Construction of Mounts for Exhibits
Instructors: Earl Lock and Pam Gaible

Date: June 11-14, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $1175

This course covers both theory and hands-on practice of mount making for museum objects. Topics include the designing and fabrication of mounts to protect, support, secure, and exhibit a variety of museum objects and various techniques for using archival materials in mount making. Practicum will include: techniques for braising metals; cutting, bending, and gluing acrylics for the use of various archival barrier materials; and for making fabric covered ethafoam forms.

Participants may bring one or two small objects and can retain the mounts they construct for these objects.

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Digitizing Museum Collections: Basic Overview

Instructor: Josh Hickman

Date: August 4-6, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $870

This course provides an overview of the steps needed to begin a digitization program with a focus on 2-dimensional archival and museum objects.  Participants will take part in exercises designed to encourage critical thinking about issues involved in digital object curatorship.  This course also includes a hands-on component in which participants will learn how to properly use scanners and image manipulation software to create digital files.

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Emergency Preparedness, Response, & Recovery
Instructors: Hilary Kaplan and Sharon Bennett

Date: August 6-9, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $1240

The purpose of this course is to thoroughly address the process of “risk management” by examining in detail how to prepare for and respond to disaster. Topics will include how to set realistic goals and objectives relative to a specific institution, the identification and assessment of risks to the institution, and the formulation of a prevention and response plan utilizing established emergency planning guidelines and procedure. Participants will learn how to effectively assess their institution’s current level of preparedness in the following areas: health and safety of staff, risk to facility, insurance coverage, standing offer contracts, and collections documentation. Multiple levels of disaster preparedness are examined including a review of response techniques, the setting of priorities in and directing a salvage operation, and on-going risk assessment throughout planning and response phases. A mock water emergency will be used to give participants a “hands-on” experience in emergency preparedness and disaster management and recovery.

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Exhibit Design for the Small Museum with Limited Resources
Instructor: Earl Lock

Date: September 8-11, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $935

The focus of this course is exhibit design for those with little or no design experience. This course will cover: the basic elements and principles of design, how to apply them effectively to museum exhibits, the process of exhibit development, conservation concerns and the use of archival materials in the design of exhibit cases and components, the design of exhibit labels, typography, design of simple educational interactives, exhibit lighting, and accessibility.

Participants are encouraged to bring slides of their exhibit space(s) and be prepared to discuss problems their institution is facing related to exhibit design.

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Field Preservation of Archaeological Artifacts

Instructor: Julie Unruh

Date: July 28-30, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $875

Designed for archaeology professionals, this course covers the basic principles of artifact preservation with a focus on fieldwork. Topics include: factors impacting artifact preservation on-site; safe excavation and transport of fragile objects; stabilization of artifacts in a field lab; maintaining good field storage; ensuring long-term research potential of artifacts; and finding and budgeting for professional conservation.

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Grant Writing for Collections Care: NEH and IMLS Grants
Instructor: Nicolette Meister

Date: August 13-14, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $590

This course will provide instruction on how to write successful grant proposals for funding preservation projects. The course will focus on the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Institute of Museum and Library Services, but participants will learn about how to locate other sources of funding. Participants will also learn about preservation planning to ensure your institution is ready to apply for federal support and about grant protocol and the review process. Take-home skills will include knowledge of how to design and write a practical proposal and realistic budget. Attendees will have the opportunity to develop a proposal outline during the course and are encouraged to bring draft proposals to receive direct assistance and feedback.

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Grant Writing for Collections Care: Private Foundations
Instructor: Linda Eppich

Date: August 11-12, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $590

This course will be complementary to the one on Federal funding sources. Participants will learn about organizations that track private foundations and are fee-based, database resources. Participants will conduct research about foundations on the Web and complete the following: a preliminary request letter, a “boilerplate” for their museum, and a grant to a foundation which might provide their institution with funding for a specific project. Management of awarded grants will be discussed.

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Integrated Pest Management
Instructor: Christa Deacy-Quinn

Date: August 18-20, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $810

The course will focus on behavior- and facility-oriented methods of conducting integrated pest management, with heavy emphasis on low-chemical, practical solutions. Topics covered include: basic identification of common invertebrate and vertebrate pests; developing an awareness of pest populations in and near museum facilities; determining action thresholds; infestation control methods (both for buildings and in collections); how to choose a pest management professional; infestation prevention methods; and health hazards relating to infesting pests and pest control efforts. Participants will engage in institution-specific integrated pest management problem solving. The course will involve lectures, lab work, and group discussion. Lab work will include hands-on identification and building evaluation.

Participants are strongly encouraged to bring examples or evidence of pests or pest damage in their institution’s building or collections (photographs, damaged non-collections items, and/or invertebrate pest specimens; please do not bring live examples!). Participants should bring photographs of their building(s), and are encouraged to bring building floor plans or maps.

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Introduction to Organic & Inorganic Material
Instructor: Sheila Siegler

Date: July 28-August 1, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $1090

This course provides detailed information about the physical and chemical composition of artifacts; construction and fabrication techniques of artifacts; identification of specific types of deterioration relative to artifact composition; examination and assessment of artifacts; condition reporting for documentation; and guidelines for handling, storing, and exhibiting artifacts by material type. Preventative collections care strategies are taught throughout including the assessment and mitigation of risk, and setting collections care priorities. Half of the course is spent on plant and fiber, protein and polymers (organic) materials and the other half of the course is spent on glass, ceramic, metal, and stone (inorganic) material.

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Legal Issues for Small Museums

Instructor: Pam White

Date: June August 25-27, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $810

In this course we will review, analyze, and critically examine the legal framework impacting museum administration as well as the ethical considerations involved in almost all of these considerations. All persons, regardless of their life situation, have personal moral

commitments.  For professionals involved in museums, there are additional ethical requirements that arise from their commitment to their institution and to their collections.  National and international laws exist to enforce some of the general legal and special moral obligations associated with museums. Issues we will review include:

 Copyright, Moral Rights, Censorship, Laws involving Endangered Species, The Universal Museum, Relationships with Dealers and Collectors, Cultural Heritage issues including The Elgin Marbles and the Getty Museum, Donor Restrictions:  the Barnes Collection, , Repatriation of Nazi War Loot, and the Native American Graves Protection Act 

Students will acquire skills to recognize when museum activities may raise legal and moral questions.  They will learn to evaluate the ways in which law and ethics both support and constrain museum operations.  Through readings, lectures, videos, discussion and role plays, students will develop the critical vocabulary to allow them to appreciate and evaluate legal and ethical issues that arise in museums.

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Making Storage Boxes, Mounts and Enclosures
Instructor: Susan Maltby

Date: June 19-21, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $900

This three day course will focus on designing and constructing good, 
safe museum storage mounts, boxes and enclosures.  We will also review 
the fundamentals of storage design and layout.

Participants are urged to bring photographs of their storage problems 
and/or solutions to share with the class

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Mannequin Making Workshop
Instructor: Steven Rosengard

Date: August 14-16, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $915

This course will focus on examining the changing female silhouette from the periods of 1830-1970, and how it affects the way a costume appears on exhibit; appropriate archival materials to use with museum costumes; and proper methods for exhibiting hats and other headgear. Participants learn the process of carving polypropylene foam to create custom forms, and will make a form they can take back to their institutions. Participants may bring costume pieces from their collection, and be prepared to transport your form back home.

Participants may bring costume pieces from their collection, and be prepared to transport your forms back home.

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The Museum Environment
Instructor: Susan Maltby

Date: June 23-26, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $1100

This workshop is offered offsite at Beloit College Logan Museum of Anthropology in Beloit, WI.  Tuition includes lodging and lunch.

This course will provide an in-depth study of the monitoring and control of the museum environment, and an introduction to the effects of the museum environment on the organic and inorganic materials of museum artifacts. Course work will include: identifying the environmental factors such as light, relative humidity, temperature, pollutants, vibration, and various types of pests that can adversely affect museum collections; a review of the terms commonly used to describe the museum environment; high and low tech environmental monitoring techniques including the use of light meters, recording hygrothermographs, computer data loggers, indicator strips, and psychrometers; strategies for mitigating and controlling environmental problems; creating a pollutant-free environment; and integrated pest management. The class will combine lectures and lab sessions.

Participants are encouraged to bring a few slides or photographs that illustrate their collections care problems.

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Museum Sustainability: An Open-Minded Approach

Instructor: Robert Weiglein

This course will give museum professionals a better understanding of what we mean when we talk about “green” and sustainable practices. We will explore how to evaluate the specific materials and methods used in museums, including exhibits and facilities, in terms of their consequences for people, for the environment and collections.

Participants are encouraged to bring to class a project that they are working on. 

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Packing and Shipping Workshop
Instructor: John Molini

Date: July 9-12, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $940

Participants will receive an overview of the principles involved in safe handling, packing, and transport of works of art and artifacts. Problem scenarios will be presented to participants for resolution in hands-on practicum sessions. Topics covered include: risk assessment, decision-making, and related issues in artifact transportation; crate design and construction; interior packing including methods and materials for 2-D and 3-D objects; design techniques for specialized components such as bracing, double boxing, packing frames and multiple object packaging; soft packing; and material selection and use.

Participants are encouraged to bring slides of packing problems for discussion and analysis.

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Photographing Museum Collections

Instructor:  Nathan Keay

Date: July 28-30, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $860

This workshop teaches the basics of photographing two and three dimensional works for inventory and documentation. Topics covered will include standard museum practices; how to work on a budget; how to best use your camera; lighting techniques and equipment; and basic digital file manipulation.

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Photoshop for Collections Management

Instructor:  Nathan Keay

Date: July 31-August 2, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $860

This class is designed for museum and collections professionals seeking to learn basic photoshop techniques and procedures for proper use and management of images. Attendees will learn about various image types, editing, manipulation, and strategies for storage and organization.

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Planning and Writing Effective Exhibit Labels
Instructor: Barbara Becker

Date: September 12-13, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $590

Good label-writing starts with good planning. This course begins with the basics, showing through examples and exercises how to shape goals and aim for the best visitor experience. Then students will practice writing and editing labels, including testing them for effectiveness.  Bring samples of your own work for discussion.

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Preservation and Mending of Low-Fired Ceramics

Instructors:  Michele Greenan and Gaby Kienitz

Date: August 4-5, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $670

Caring for low-fired ceramic vessels or vessel portions can be tricky.  Nearly all Midwestern prehistoric ceramics fall into this category and many of these are vital components in exhibitry and research.  This workshop focuses on the care and potential treatment of these low-fired ceramics and what currently serves as ‘best practice’ solutions in the world of conservation.  Attendees will be instructed through the process of assessing material, preparing solutions, consolidating, and adhering low-fired ceramic shards.  Releasing joins and making plaster fills will also be addressed.  This is a hands-on class during which students practice skills on modern low-fired flower pots. Students will walk away with their mended pot (which they initially break!), reference articles, and lists of supply vendors. 

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Preservation of Archives
Instructors: Hilary Kaplan and Mary Lynn Ritzenthaler

Date: August 25-28, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $1125

This course will provide a foundation for making sound preservation decisions about a variety of archival holdings. The emphasis is on practical and cost effective methodologies. The course will provide an overview of archival materials, focusing on paper-based holdings with attention paid to requirements for machine-readable formats. Topics covered include preservation risks to records and strategies to mitigate those risks, including the environment, handling and use, storage and housing, holdings maintenance, reformatting, emergency preparedness, conservation treatment, and exhibition. There will be fun and silliness.

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Principles of Collections Management
Instructor: Terry Birkett

Date: August 11-15, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $1175

This course focuses specifically on collections management, facilities, and storage. The first section will cover risk assessment, staff training, inventory control, handling, and equipment. The second section addresses security and fire systems, environmental monitoring equipment, facility selection and design, and off-site storage. The third section discusses storage types, designs, material and construction; “custom-made” vs. “off-the-self” units; special housings; and how to build a custom objects storage unit.

Participants are encouraged to bring up to six slides illustrating problems with their collections storage facility for discussion and analysis.

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Public Art Administration

Instructor: Pam White

Date: August 28-31, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $810

This course focuses on the realm of public art and monuments.  The history of public art and monuments in the United States will be reviewed and form the basis for further explorations into the field. The creation of public art projects will be analyzed and the issues that arise in the administration of these programs will be the subject for class study. The varied ways artists are engaged to create work for public places will be examined.  Field visits to public art and monuments in the region including Dubuque and the Quad Cities will take place in order to learn from real life examples and review the viability of these existing programs. Through presentations, readings, group discussions, and site visits students will explore the many ways in which public art and monuments impact the community as well as how the community impacts public art and monuments.

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Reading, Transcribing and Caring for Early American Documents

Instructor:  William Budde

This course will examine handwriting styles found in the British Americas from about 1600 through 1850. We will learn how various writing surfaces, ink, instruments, and teaching methods influence how a written style evolves, and how this knowledge can help us read older hand written documents through a combination of practice, presentation, and interaction. Methods to improve transcription and abstraction skills will be learned and practiced. Preservation and care of original documentswill also be addressed. A range of original and digitized examples will be shown dating from the 1650s. The course will interest anyone that works with early American hand written documents- archivists, genealogists, historical researchers, records custodians, family historians.

Participants are encouraged to bring in a copy of documents that have been difficult to read and understand so we can all gain from the shared experience.

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Recovery of Wet Photographs
Instructor: Gary Albright

Date: August 11-13, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $860

Prerequisite: Care of Photographic Collections I, II, and III or instructor approval

How does one recover wet photographs? This course begins with a “hands-on” wet experience. Photographs will be retrieved from a wet and muddy situation. Some will be air-dried and some frozen. The frozen images will be subsequently thawed for treatment. All images will be surface cleaned, washed, and flattened, where such operations are feasible. In tandem with the real-life experience, there will be lectures and experiments outlining proper techniques and potential dangers. Also, participants will continue to sharpen their photographic identification skills, relating the various processes to the proper procedures necessary for their safe recovery.

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Rigging & Moving of Fine Art/Artifacts
Instructors: Luke Boehnke and Roger Machin

Date:September 3-6, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $1425

The focus of this course is to teach participants how to safely plan and execute moves of heavy and/or fragile museum artifacts weighing up to 5000lbs. Techniques taught will include equipment readily available to the heritage professional as well as equipment used by professional riggers. This course includes a brief history of rigging practices and technologies; how rigging crews and boxes are organized; mitigating the negative effects of rigging on surrounding structures and substrates using crates, pallets, and dunnage; using a forklift; common rigging problems and solutions; and specifications of and ordering cranes. There will be demonstrations and hands-on experience with rigging equipment.

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Safe Display of Flat Textiles

Instructor: Camille Myers Breeze

Date: July 29-31, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $590

This workshop is offered offsite at the John F, Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum in Boston, MA.  Tuition DOES NOT include lodging or meals.


Temporary display of flat textiles, such as quilts, flags, embroideries, and lace, is a challenge faced every season by museum staff. Learning what technique is best for each textile is essential to safe and attractive exhibition of these often fragile and large items. This three-day workshop will begin with choosing textiles that are good candidates for display. Basic documentation and surface cleaning will then be taught. Attendees will learn hands on how to create a slant mount and a pinable mount for display of small to medium-sized textiles. Magnetic and Velcro hanging systems will then be created for larger textiles. Other display solutions, such as pressure mounting and framing, will also be presented for comparison. This workshop is intended for people with excellent hand skills and experience working with museum artifacts. Sewing skills are preferred but not required. Textiles will be provided--please do not bring your own textile.

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Illustration forEducation and Programming

Instructors: Peggy McNamara and Dan Brinkmeier

Team-taught by Peggy MacNamara and Dan Brinkmeier, scientific illustrators and studio artists with a long professional association with Chicago’s Field Museum. This four-day course combines conceptual and thematic instruction, art history, and skill development through technical drawing and visualization of natural science concepts. Participants will be able to enhance their skills to better design and develop graphic materials and other visual elements used in exhibits, school outreach programs and areas of museum public programming such as environmental conservation. The course structure will include lecture, group discussion, and practice in drawing, illustration concepts, and studio art.

 Other key aspects of this class include:  This course is suitable for participants with all levels of drawing skills or art; as participants may choose to concentrate on simple visualization techniques (planning and design) leading to conceptual development of exhibit elements, educational activities or materials, or illustrations used in publications or electronic media. For example, the entire course may be spent visualizing and developing a museum exhibit diorama or large mural that is to be completed by another artist. Finished artwork may not be an outcome in this case, but there will be an emphasis on development of concept visualizations and content organization using simple sketches or rough drawings. Participants are also encouraged to bring their own projects to the course. For those desiring more art instruction and skill development in drawing techniques, there will be two main areas to be covered:  (1.), scientific (technical) illustration or rendering, and the visual representation of artifacts, biological specimens, and other objects common to natural history museums; and  (2.), an introduction to other forms of illustration and visual representation used in public media and education, such as the use of comics in natural science programs. To the greatest degree possible, the course will also make use of the local environment as subject matter, depicting locally obtained cultural objects, biological specimens, and working from the local landscape through drawing and painting. Although some basic drawing materials are provided, participants are also encouraged to bring their own preferred art materials  if they plan to work in a medium in which they are already familiar (such as watercolor or acrylic). 

Because of the open-ended structure of this course, instruction will be provided at all levels of artistic skill, from the beginning stage to more advanced levels in drawing and painting. There will also be the opportunity for course participants to work together on a group project, so that participants with less developed art skills may concentrate on thematic content and design/development, while collaborating with more advanced participant/artists to do the actual production, much in the way that a museum exhibit team would function to produce a diorama, mural, or exhibit.

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Specialized Matting Techniques for Paper Artifacts
Instructor: Christine Conniff-O’Shea

Date: October 1-4, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $940

Designed as hands-on workshop, this inclusive course focuses on all facets of mounting and storing works of art on paper within a museum setting. Participants will learn a variety of techniques from the construction of simple storage enclosures to basic 4-ply mats to elegant exhibition mats. The course will conclude with a class project incorporating techniques for the mounting and framing of oversized art.  All media and paper supports will be covered as well as accepted methods of attachment and framing practices.

Participants are encouraged to bring 1-2 items for discussion and examination. They should not be extremely fragile or larger than 18”x24”.

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Textile Stablization Using Sheer Overlays

Instructor: Camille Myers Breeze

Date: September 22-24, 2014

Cost: Tuition and Materials Fee: $885

Conservators employ three main types of sheer overlay to stabilize deteriorated textiles: net, silk sheer, and synthetic sheer. Each material has its pros and cons including cost, availability, invisibility, ease of use, and archival stability. The benefit of any sheer overlay is that it provides immediate stabilization as well as preventative protection. Participants will learn how to use all three of these sheer materials and, more importantly, how to determine which overlay is best for a given situation. You may choose to bring your own clean, pest-free textile that is quilt sized or smaller. 

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Archives: Principles and Practices

Instructor: James Roth

Date: Offered next in 2015

Offered in partnership with the Society of American Archivists; course is eligible to receive 1.5 CEUs or 10 ARCs. This course is designed for librarians, records managers, museum staff, and administrators who have responsibility for archival records but little or no archives training. Although archivists have much in common with librarians, records managers, and museum staff, they must use different practices to protect the integrity of historical records. A strong archives program puts into practice long-standing archival principles. What are those principles and how are they implemented? This workshop provides an overview of the core archival functions of appraisal, accessioning, arrangement and description, preservation, reference, and access. This workshop will address the following issues: the terminology of archives and historical records and an overview of the body of knowledge needed, ethical responsibilities, and resources for continuing professional development; the principles and functions of archival organization: provenance, respect de fonds, and original order; core policy statements, professional standards, and best practices; evaluating an individual program to determine needed improvements; developing the knowledge base needed to make choices for balancing access to and preservation of historical records and holdings; and understanding of the role of the archives in fulfilling the mission of the institution.

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