BA (Hons) Cultural Heritage Studies: Libraries, Archives, and Museums (V700)

Key facts

Duration: 3 years full-time on campus 

Typical Offer: A levels - BBC / 112 points with b in any subject. IB: 28 points overall. 

For more information, contact: Dr Sarah Higgins - sjh@aber.ac.uk 

UCAS Applications for September 2022 is open now. 

The BA in Cultural Heritage Studies at Aberystwyth University seeks to introduce you to the cultural heritage aspects of the library, archive and heritage professions. If you are interested in any aspects of library, archive or museum work, including looking for information, helping others in information seeking, and how our heritage and knowledge is stored, shared and preserved - then this degree at Aberystwyth University is for you. 

The Cultural Heritage Studies degree has received professional accreditation from CILIP: the library and information association.

 

Overview

This new degree seeks to introduce you to the cultural heritage aspects of the library, archive and information professions.

Are you interested in:

  • History and especially documents, objects and artefacts that bring history to life?
  • How a country or community’s heritage and knowledge is stored, shared and preserved?
  • How information is organised, used and the role it plays in society?
  • Looking for information and helping others find information?
  • Understanding how to deal with the massive amounts of information that are generated in the digital world?
  • Reading and research, and want to build these interests into your future career?

...then Cultural Heritage Studies could be the degree for you.

You will learn about the management and use of information, heritage resources, archives and records in both digital and physical formats.

Opportunities at Aberystwyth for Cultural Heritage Studies students include:

  • being taught by experts in their field, in departments with well-established international reputations in teaching and research in information studies, history and Welsh history;
  • studying in a town with a rich information history and range of cultural organisations with which the Department has close links including: the National Library of Wales (one of the UK’s five copyright libraries), the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales, the Welsh Books Council, and the historic Ceredigion Museum.

Employability

Employability

The course is fully accredited by CILIP – the UK’s professional Library and Information Association. This means that when you graduate from this scheme you will gain a professional qualification that has prepared you to start a career in libraries and archives, heritage and museum organisations, or information-related roles in the business, cultural and the not-for-profit sectors. You will also be in a good position to go on to further study, especially professionally accredited Masters’ qualifications in Information and Library Studies, Archive and Records Management or Digital Information and Media Management.

Modules

Below is an indicative list of core modules that you will study on this course.

First year:

IL10120 - Foundations of Information Studies
This module provides a foundation in some key principles and skills in the discipline of information studies particularly relating to information management and resource discovery. It will familiarize students with the structure, content and purpose of a range of information sources and resource discovery systems.

IL10320 - The Cultural Heritage Landscape
Students will gain an overview of the academic and professional debates concerning the nature and role of heritage in society, and the key legislation and organizations which seek to safeguard our heritage.

IL10520 – Effective Communication
This module introduces human communicative practice studied from linguistic and psychological perspectives. It introduces the theory behind communicative practices and provides students with the skills to describe and analyse a variety of communicative practices, including computer mediated communication. In addition, it allows students to develop their own communicative skills including skills in writing and oral presentation.

IL11120 - The Archival Inheritance
The UK has one of the longest archival traditions, with our earliest record, Domesday Book, dating back to the eleventh century. Students will explore the history of the UK’s ‘archival inheritance’, examining the nature of its archival resources, the skills required to understand and interpret them, and the role and responsibilities of those who care for them.

HY12120 - Introduction to History
Students will be introduced to a range of skills, techniques and practical exercises intended to cover fundamental elements not only of undergraduate study but also of historians' practice.

Second and third years:

IL20320 - Museums in the 21st Century
Students will explore the nature of the UK’s museums, the skills required to understand and interpret the objects found within them, and the role and responsibilities of those who care for them.

IL20220 - Information in a Changing World
This module introduces and investigates the role and impact of libraries and information in society. It takes both a historical and current perspective to consider how the information provision and use has developed, including the rise of the internet and its impact on everyday life.

IL20420 - Record Revolutions – a Cultural History of Record Keeping
Students will explore the history and development of recordkeeping and why societies capture information in recorded form. This wide-ranging overview module begins with an examination of ‘recordkeeping’ in pre-script societies, and explores the history of recordkeeping through a series of several ‘revolutions’ from the rise of manuscript culture through to the rise of the digital record.

IL20620 - Resource Discovery and Digital Information Management
Students will be provided with the theoretical knowledge and skills to design a data model for the effective management of cultural digital information; including its creation and organisation, and future discovery and retrieval.

HY20120 - Making History
Students will be introduced to the theories and approaches which have informed how professional historians have studied the past in recent times. Students will be introduced to the key theoretical developments which have influenced the writing of history in the last century. and asked to consider how these ideas have been used by professional historians in practice.

IL30120 - Collection Management and Heritage Organisations
The module explores fundamental areas of collection development, collection review and evaluation. It also covers topics such as the resource discovery, promotion of collection use, preservation, and collection issues related to particular formats. Its overriding concern is the management of collections of resources (whether in one or a number of formats), and organisation of access to virtual collections in effective, efficient and economical ways, in order to meet the needs of user communities.

IL33920 - Local Studies and Community Heritage
This module explores developments in the field of local studies, from the earliest antiquarian endeavours to its growing professionalisation in the 21st century with the establishment of heritage centres, cross-domain co-operation, and academic specialisation.

IL30340 - Dissertation
The module covers approaches to the planning, design, research and writing of a dissertation. The aim is to produce a sustained piece of academic work with a definite purpose, a coherent argument and a relevant outcome. It gives the student a chance to build on what has been learnt in the degree so far, and to develop their skills in independent learning.

During your second and third years, you will also be able to choose from a range of history or information studies optional modules that will complement your core modules.