Online Course: Caring for Museum Collections (Summer 2022)

Includes a Live Event on 07/11/2022 at 2:00 PM (EDT)

  • Registration Closed

Session Full

Please note the Summer Session of Caring for Museum Collections is now full and registration is closed. If you would like to be placed on the waiting list for the Summer Session, email learn@aaslh.orgVisit our 2022 course schedule for upcoming sessions of this course.

Course Description

This eight-week course will deal with the physical care and preservation of your museum collections. This practical course will cover how collections age and deteriorate, handling collections, storage requirements, environmental considerations, housekeeping, and risk management.

Each week of this course contains a narrative discussion of a topic in the form of Lessons. The lessons and web-based readings, combined with your professional experiences, will provide you with a grounding in the week’s topic.

Details

SESSION DATES: June 13 - August 7, 2022

COST: $215 AASLH Members / $315 Nonmembers / 10% discount for STEPS participants with promo code found in the online STEPS Community or by emailing learn@aaslh.org

OPEN REGISTRATION: March 1 - June 6, 2022; 30 participant limit. Courses typically fill up before the registration deadline, so register early.

Course Logistics

FORMAT: Online, Instructor-led, Weekly-paced course

LENGTH: 8 weeks

PARTICIPATION: Students should expect to spend approximately 5-7 hours per week on readings, text-based forum discussions, Zoom chats, and assignments.

LIVE ZOOM DISCUSSIONS: We recommend downloading the Zoom mobile or desktop app for this course. 

  • Thursday, June 23, 2:00 - 3:00PM Eastern
  • Monday, July 11, 2:00 - 3:00PM Eastern
  • Thursday, July 21, 2:00 - 3:00PM Eastern
  • Thursday, August 4, 2:00 - 3:00PM Eastern

Zoom discussions are recorded in case a participant is unable to attend the live sessions.

MATERIALS: This course requires participants have access to museum collections to successfully complete this course, either as a staff member, volunteer, or intern. There are no required texts for this course. All other materials will be provided.

TECHNOLOGY: Participants will need access to internet and a desktop computer, laptop, or tablet to participate in this course. For the live Zoom discussions, we recommend having access to a camera and a headset, earpods, or other audio and microphone device. Automatic captioning is available in the Zoom discussions.

CREDIT: Successful completion of this course (80% or higher) will earn one credit toward the Small Museum Pro! certificate from AASLH.

Participant Outcomes

After completing this course, participants will understand principles and best practices of physical care and preservation of museum collections including the following:

  • Know the major causes of deterioration for museum objects and how to use that information to enhance long-term preservation;
  • Know how to handle objects in the safest way;
  • Know how to examine and document the condition of objects in your collections;
  • Know how to display your collections in a way that prolongs their life;
  • Know how to store and house your collections in the way that best preserves them;
  • Understand the importance of environmental control for the preservation of your collections;
  • Know the best ways to clean your museum; and
  • Know how to perform a risk assessment of your museum and use it to write a disaster plan.

Who Should Take This Course

This course is a beginning level course designed for professional staff and volunteers of historical organizations and libraries with historical collections who have little to no experience with conservation of collections. This course requires participants have access to museum collections to successfully complete this course, either as a staff member, volunteer, or intern.

How to Register

Click here for instructions on how to register yourself or another user for this event. 

Rebecca Elder

Online Course Instructor

Email: rebecca@elderpreservation.com

Rebecca Elder is an experienced cultural heritage preservation consultant who helps clients find practical and achievable solutions to care for their history collections. She collaborates with libraries, museums, archives, municipalities and families to tailor preservation plans to their resources and timelines.

In 2014, Rebecca founded Rebecca Elder Cultural Heritage Preservation to provide preservation advice to clients holding history collections. Rebecca has also worked at Amigos Library Services, the Harvard University Libraries and the Dolph Briscoe Center for American History. Rebecca received her MSIS and a Certificate of Advanced Studies for Conservation of Library and Archival Materials from the School of Information at the University of Texas at Austin, and now is adjunct faculty at the iSchool, teaching Preservation Management and Treatment Techniques for Bound Materials.  She also serves as coordinator for the National Heritage Responders, a team of volunteer conservators and allied professionals who respond to disasters.

Rebecca is a Professional Associate member of the American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works. She also engages in professional service with the American Institute for Conservation, the Society of American Archivists, the Society of Southwest Archivists, and the Association of Tribal Archives, Libraries and Museums.

Rebecca lives in Austin, TX with her four cats: Frankie, Princess Snowball, Thingy and Tucker the Most Interesting Cat In The World (@heytuckercat on Instagram). She knits obsessively, collects smashed pennies, and isn’t afraid to admit that she loves 1970s white polyester jumpsuit Elvis.  Looking to connect? Head to www.elderpreservation.com. She’ll be glad you did.

Key:

Complete
Failed
Available
Locked
ABOUT THE COURSE
Course Guide
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource. Read the Course Guide to learn how to get the most out of this course and to open the Week 1 module.
Course Outline
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
WEEK 1: INTRODUCTION TO AGENTS OF DETERIORATION (JUNE 13 - JUNE 19)
Forum: Introduce Yourself
Make 1 discussion post to continue.
Make 1 discussion post to continue.
Lesson: General Overview
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Reading: Agents of Deterioration
Recorded 02/09/2022
Recorded 02/09/2022
Video: Basic Condition Reporting
Recorded 02/09/2022
Recorded 02/09/2022
Care of __________ Cheat Sheet (BLANK)
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Care of Ancient Glass Vase Cheat Sheet (EXAMPLE)
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
General Condition Report Form (BLANK)
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Week 1 Forum
Make 1 discussion post to continue.
Make 1 discussion post to continue. Please share with the rest of the class which objects you selected and why. Forums are an opportunity to discuss the material. If you have any questions about the material please ask them here.
Assignment 1: Care of Cheat Sheet (DUE JUNE 19)
Passing Grade: B
Passing Grade: B Assignments are due Sundays by midnight, your time.
Assignment 2: General Condition Report Form (DUE JUNE 19)
Passing Grade: B
Passing Grade: B Assignments are due Sundays by midnight, your time.
Week 1 Additional Readings and Resources
WEEK 2: TEMPERATURE AND RELATIVE HUMIDITY (JUNE 20 - JUNE 26)
Week 2 Live Session Questions Forum
Open discussion to continue.
Open discussion to continue. Feel free to post any questions you would like to discuss in this week's live session.
Zoom Chat (June 23)
06/23/2022 at 2:00 PM (EDT)   |  60 minutes
06/23/2022 at 2:00 PM (EDT)   |  60 minutes Passcode: 7bT82x
Lesson: Temperature and Relative Humidity
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Reading: Incorrect Temperature
Select the "OPEN THE READING" button to begin.
Select the "OPEN THE READING" button to begin.
Reading: Incorrect Relative Humidity
Select the "OPEN THE READING" button to begin.
Select the "OPEN THE READING" button to begin.
Checklist for Environmental Control in Museums
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Week 2 Forum
Make 1 discussion post to continue.
Make 1 discussion post to continue. Using the Checklist for Environmental Controls in Museums document, please discuss areas of concern in your museum. Forums are an opportunity to discuss the material. If you have any questions about the material please ask them here.
Assignment 3 (DUE JUNE 26)
Passing Grade: B
Passing Grade: B
Week 2 Additional Readings and Resources
WEEK 3: LIGHT (JUNE 27 - JULY 3)
Lesson: Radiation
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Reading: Light, Ultraviolet, and Infrared
Select the "OPEN THE READING" button to begin.
Select the "OPEN THE READING" button to begin.
Checklist for Light Control in the Museum
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Week 3 Forum
Make 1 discussion post to continue.
Make 1 discussion post to continue. Using the Checklist for Light Control in the Museum document as a guide, please discuss areas of concern in your museum. Forums are an opportunity to discuss the material. If you have any questions about the material please ask them here.
Assignment 4 (DUE JULY 3)
Passing Grade: B
Passing Grade: B Assignments are due Sundays by midnight, your time.
Week 3 Additional Readings and Resources
WEEK 4: PESTS AND POLLUTANTS (JULY 4 - JULY 10)
Lesson: Pests and Pollutants
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Reading: Pests
Select the "OPEN THE READING" button to begin.
Select the "OPEN THE READING" button to begin.
Reading: Pollutants
Select the "OPEN THE READING" button to begin.
Select the "OPEN THE READING" button to begin.
Week 4 Forum
Make 1 discussion post to continue.
Make 1 discussion post to continue. Describe housekeeping practices at your museum. Who performs them? Is there a schedule? Do you do any monitoring for pests along with your usual housekeeping procedures? Forums are an opportunity to discuss the material. If you have any questions about the material please ask them here.
Assignment 5 (DUE JULY 10)
Passing Grade: B
Passing Grade: B Assignments are due Sundays by midnight, your time.
Week 4 Additional Readings and Resources
WEEK 5: DIRECT PHYSICAL FORCES (JULY 11 - JULY 17)
Week 5 Live Session Questions Forum
Open discussion to continue.
Open discussion to continue. Feel free to post any questions you would like to discuss in this week's live session.
Zoom Chat (July 11)
07/11/2022 at 2:00 PM (EDT)   |  60 minutes
07/11/2022 at 2:00 PM (EDT)   |  60 minutes Passcode: 7bT82x
Lesson: Direct Physical Forces
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Reading: Physical Forces
Select the "OPEN THE READING" button to begin.
Select the "OPEN THE READING" button to begin.
Week 5 Forum
Make 1 discussion post to continue.
Make 1 discussion post to continue. Please discuss how collections materials are handled and displayed at your institution. Do the furnishings and housing materials meet preservation standards? Are museum objects supported properly? Do you have a handling policy? Forums are an opportunity to discuss the material. If you have any questions about the material please ask them here.
Assignment 6 (DUE JULY 17)
Passing Grade: B
Passing Grade: B Assignments are due Sundays by midnight, your time.
Week 5 Additional Readings and Resources
WEEK 6: DISSOCIATION (JULY 18 - JULY 24)
Week 6 Live Session Questions Forum
Make 1 discussion post to continue.
Make 1 discussion post to continue. Feel free to post any questions you would like to discuss in this week's live session.
Zoom Chat (July 21)
07/21/2022 at 2:00 PM (EDT)   |  60 minutes
07/21/2022 at 2:00 PM (EDT)   |  60 minutes Passcode: 7bT82x
Lesson: Dissociation
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Reading: Dissociation
Select the "OPEN THE READING" button to begin.
Select the "OPEN THE READING" button to begin.
Reading: Policies, Plans, and Procedures – CCAHA
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Week 6 Forum
Make 1 discussion post to continue.
Make 1 discussion post to continue. After reviewing the Policies, Plans, and Procedures – CCAHA document, evaluate what additional documents your institution should create. Write a paragraph about which policies you are already implementing and what still needs to be created. Forums are an opportunity to discuss the material. If you have any questions about the material please ask them here.
Assignment 7 (DUE JULY 24)
Passing Grade: B
Passing Grade: B Assignments are due Sundays by midnight, your time.
Week 6 Additional Readings and Resources
WEEK 7: FIRE AND WATER (JULY 29 - JULY 31)
Lesson: Water, Fire, Risk Assessment
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Reading: Water
Select the "OPEN THE READING" button to begin.
Select the "OPEN THE READING" button to begin.
Reading: Fire
Select the "OPEN THE READING" button to begin.
Select the "OPEN THE READING" button to begin.
Week 7 Forum
Make 1 discussion post to continue.
Make 1 discussion post to continue. Please discuss your institution’s susceptibilities to fire and water. Consider nearby water sources – like rivers or lakes – and internal factors like plumbing and sprinkler heads. Consider fire risks, such as the availability of fire extinguishers and existing fire detection and suppression systems, and internal issues such as the location and health of electrical boxes and outlets. Forums are an opportunity to discuss the material. If you have any questions about the material please ask them here.
Assignment 8 (DUE JULY 31)
Passing Grade: B
Passing Grade: B Assignments are due Sundays by midnight, your time.
Week 7 Additional Readings and Resources
WEEK 8: SECURITY (AUGUST 1 - AUGUST 7)
Week 8 Live Session Questions Forum
Make 1 discussion post to continue.
Make 1 discussion post to continue. Feel free to post any questions you would like to discuss in this week's live session.
Zoom Chat (August 4)
08/04/2022 at 2:00 PM (EDT)   |  60 minutes
08/04/2022 at 2:00 PM (EDT)   |  60 minutes Passcode: 7bT82x
Lesson: Loss of Collection Materials
Open to download resource.
Open to download resource.
Reading: Thieves and Vandals
Select the "OPEN THE READING" button to begin.
Select the "OPEN THE READING" button to begin.
Week 8 Forum
Make 1 discussion post to continue.
Make 1 discussion post to continue. Please discuss what your next steps will be for improving your institution’s emergency plan. Forums are an opportunity to discuss the material. If you have any questions about the material please ask them here.
Assignment 9 (DUE AUGUST 7)
Passing Grade: B
Passing Grade: B Assignments are due Sundays by midnight, your time.
Week 8 Additional Readings and Resources
COURSE SURVEY AND CERTIFICATE OF COMPLETION
Course Survey
13 Questions
13 Questions Please note the survey must be completed and a passing grade must be achieved before the Certificate of Completion is available.
Certificate of Completion
1 Small Museum Pro! Certificate Credit credit  |  Certificate available
1 Small Museum Pro! Certificate Credit credit  |  Certificate available Successful completion of this course (B or higher) will earn one credit toward the Small Museum Pro! certificate from AASLH.

If you have any questions, please contact AASLH Professional Development staff at learn@aaslh.org or 615-320-3203.

Cancellation/Refunds for onsite workshops must be submitted in writing via email to learn@aaslh.org or mail to 2021 21st Ave S., Suite 320 Nashville, TN 37212. Cancellations made prior to the early-bird registration deadline date will receive a full refund. Cancellations made between the early-bird deadline date and eight days prior to the workshop will be subject to a $55 processing/materials charge. No refunds will be given within seven days of the workshop date. AASLH is not responsible for cancellations that were mailed or emailed but never received.

Cancellations/Refunds for online professional development (webinars and online courses) must be submitted in writing via email to learn@aaslh.org or mail to 2021 21st Ave S., Suite 320 Nashville, TN 37212. Cancellations made prior to the start date for the online course or the day of the webinar will be given a full refund. No refund will be given after the start date for the online course or on/after the day of the webinar. Registrants may transfer their registration to another person. Registrations cannot be transferred between courses or course sessions. AASLH is not responsible for cancellations that were mailed or emailed but never received.