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Lowering Barriers

Graduate school is not the only pathway to entering the museum field, but we believe it’s an important one and that therefore the accessibility of graduate education is critical. Here are some of the ways that we are working to reduce barriers to access.

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Holistic Admissions

Our application review process prioritizes expertise and experience beyond GPA and traditional museum internships. When our Admissions Commitee reviews applications, they prioritize a commitment to a culture of belonging in the program. You can access our rubric here.


As part of our holistic admission reviews, our program eliminated our Graduate Record Examination (GRE) requirement in 2019. The GRE test provides a financial and logistical barrier to the application process. Further, research suggests that standardized tests scores such as the GRE may not accurately predict success in graduate school.

Virtual Workshops

You can meet with us without having to incur the expense of travelling. Check out our event page for details!

Application Fee Waiver

The Graduate School at the University of Washington waives the application fee based on financial need and for McNair Scholars; please see the Application Fee Waiver page for details. In the event that an applicant does not qualify for this waiver, it is possible for the Museology program to pay the fee on behalf of the applicant. Please email if you do not qualify for the Graduate School waiver and wish to request a fee waiver on other grounds (please do this before submitting your application, as we are unable to reimburse applicants).

Paid Internships

Many museum professionals enter the field because they are passionate about supporting museums and their local communities, but the prevalence of unpaid internships in the field can pose a significant barrier for even the most enthusiastic emerging professional. In fact, unpaid internships may widen the opportunity gap for underrepresented students, as a higher concentration of women, Black and Latino persons, and individuals from low-income families are represented in unpaid internships (Frenette et al., 2015; Gardner, 2011). Over the past four years, we have prioritized paid internships for every museology student.

Frenette, A., Dumford, A. D., Miller, A. L., & Tepper, S. J. (2015). The Internship Divide: The Promise and Challenges of Internships in the Arts. Bloomington, IN. Retrieved from

Gardner, P. (2011). The debate over unpaid college internships. Intern Bridge.