Museology Master of Arts Program

How to apply

While our January 13 priority deadline has passed, we are currently accepting applications for Autumn 2023 through our rolling admissions process.* The next rolling admissions deadline is Friday, March 10, 2023 at 5:00pm Pacific Time.

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We strive to make our application process as transparent and easy as possible. Our application consists of:

We also offer the option to include an Extenuating Circumstances statement to provide context on any aspects of your application you feel may not be representative of your academic and professional potential. To understand what we’re looking for across these materials, see the application rubric on our main admissions page.

The Museology program receives about 100 – 150 applications per academic year. We typically invite around 28 individuals to join the program. All those admitted commence study in the Autumn Quarter, without exception. If you have questions, please email our Graduate Advisor.

PLEASE NOTE: Museology does not require you to submit GRE scores to apply.

*Review of applications submitted during our rolling admissions period is contingent upon available space after the review of applications submitted before the priority deadline. The next rolling admissions deadline is Friday, March 10, 2023. Our final rolling admissions deadline will be Thursday, June 15, 2023.

Personal Statement

Write a personal statement that responds to the 3 following questions:

  1. Why do you want a graduate degree in museum studies?
  2. What makes you an outstanding candidate for our program? (Consult our application review rubric to inform your response to this question.)
  3. Tell us about a time when you tried and failed at something, what you learned about yourself from that experience, and how you moved on from it.

Your personal statement should be no longer than 1,000 words. The personal statement should be double-spaced, and each page should be numbered and clearly identified with your full name.


TrendsWatch is an annual forecasting report published by the Center for the Future of Museums (CFM), a division of the American Alliance of Museums (AAM). The report summarizes five pillars of community infrastructure in society and implications for how museums could support these pillars, as identified through CFM’s research.  Review the TrendsWatch 2022 report and choose a pillar that interests you. Write a critical response to one of these five pillars. Summarize the pillar itself, and then analyze its significance and implications for your future as a museum professional.

You can obtain a copy of the TrendsWatch 2022 report here on the AAM website.

Your response should be no longer than 500 words. Essays should be double-spaced, and each page should be numbered and clearly identified with your full name.

Diversity Statement

We are committed to building a diverse cohort of students, with varying orientations, perspectives, and experiences. Describe how you would contribute to an inclusive learning community within the Museology Graduate Program.

Your response should be no longer than 250 words, double-spaced and clearly identified with your full name.

Three Letters of Recommendation

Museology requires three letters of recommendation from both academic and professional sources. We require at least one academic letter of recommendation from faculty members from your previous undergraduate or graduate degrees and recommend two such letters. Professional letters of recommendation should be from a supervisor, manager, or mentor from your previous professional experience relevant to your interests in the museum field (for more tips, see our application tips page).

On the Online Graduate School Application, you will be asked to provide names and contact information for three persons from whom you have requested recommendations. Your recommenders will be sent an e-mail prompt with instructions for submitting their letter of recommendation online.

Please email you recommenders the following prompt:

The University of Washington Museology Program is a two-year interdisciplinary graduate program that seeks to inspire students to use museums to create strong communities. Applicants to the program are rated across the following three dimensions:

Academic Potential: The applicant displays an exceptional academic track record, and has demonstrated analytical thinking, quality writing, and a passion for a relevant aspect of the museum field.

Professional Experience: Applicant has considerable, relevant experience related to the applicant’s stated area of interest

Contribution to the Program: Applicant’s interests, academic background, and life experiences make a significant contribution to the overall cohort and/or the museum field. The applicant also supports the creation of an inclusive environment in Museology program.

Academic Recommenders: Please comment on the applicant’s previous academic work, and how they would do in a rigorous interdisciplinary graduate program grounded in research. Please provide concrete examples and detailed feedback about what the applicant has accomplished academically.

Professional Recommenders: Please comment on the applicant’s previous professional work related to their area(s) of interest in the museum field. Please provide concrete examples of dedication, leadership, innovation, and/or creativity in their work.

*A Note about Question 2 in the recommendation form (“In making this evaluation, what group are you using as a basis for comparison?”): It is intended to provide context to your relationship with the applicant. For instance, are they one of 1000 undergraduate students who you’ve taught over the past 10 years or are they one of 10 employees you supervise on a daily basis?

You will be able to see when the letters have been submitted on your application status page. Please contact us if any of your recommenders have trouble submitting their letters using the online form.

You are advised to request recommendations well in advance of the application deadline to ensure your application packet is complete when submitted. For more tips on designating recommendations, see our Application Tips page.

Résumé or Curriculum Vitae

Upload an electronic copy of your curriculum vitae or résumé, in Microsoft Word, RTF, or PDF format. PDF format is preferred. Your curriculum vitae or résumé should include the following information:

  • Work experience related to the museum field (include employer, position title, and dates of employment)
  • Other types of employment experience (include employer, position title, and dates of employment)
  • Involvement with volunteer, community, and/or diversity-related activities (include organization, position title, and dates of service)
  • Relevant honors, awards, publications, and presentations

Unofficial Transcripts

Please create a PDF of your transcript for upload to the Online Graduate School Application. You can accomplish this by scanning your original transcript or by printing an unofficial electronic transcript to PDF.

Extenuating Circumstances (optional)

If there are extenuating circumstances, not addressed in other sections of your application, related to your academic transcript, CV, or other facets of your application that you would like the admissions committee to consider, please describe them.

Your response should be no longer than 250 words, double-spaced and clearly identified with your full name.

Please note

  • UW and Museology staff cannot see applications until they are officially submitted. Contact the Graduate School ( or 206.685.2630) for technical issues or problems uploading materials into the application portal.
  • Please ensure that the e-mail address you provide in your application will be valid for several months. We will use it to communicate with you throughout the admission process.
  • The online application fee must be submitted directly to the Graduate School, not to the Museology Graduate Program. Please view the Graduate School Application for Admission page for current fee information.