2023-2024 / HAAR0251-1

Museums and scientific promotion of cultural heritage


30h Th, 8d FT Tr. Pr.

Number of credits

 Master in history of art and archaeology : archeometrics (120 ECTS)5 crédits 
 Master in history of art and archaeology : general (120 ECTS)5 crédits 
 Master in history of art and archaeology : musicology (120 ECTS)5 crédits 
 Master in history of art and archaeology : general (60 ECTS)5 crédits 
 Master in history of art and archaeology : musicology (60 ECTS)5 crédits 


Richard Veymiers

Language(s) of instruction

French language

Organisation and examination

Teaching in the second semester


Schedule online

Units courses prerequisite and corequisite

Prerequisite or corequisite units are presented within each program

Learning unit contents

This course, organised by the Director of the Musée de la Fédération Wallonie-Bruxelles, seeks to expose students to the academic and cultural life of museums, to aid their discovery of the professions to be found there, and to introduce them to professionals working in this area.

It involves creating a global panorama, as broad as possible, of the realities of museums, informed by experiences from the field, updated in light of current developments.

Hence an approach both concrete and current, from the museum to the university, which is different from Museum Studies seminars but also complementary.

This is the concept that is reflected in the course outline envisaged for the 2023-2024 academic year:

  • General introduction: the challenges of a museum in Belgium in the 21st century
  • The Domaine of Mariemont: enhancing an exceptional heritage
  • Leading a museum: the cultural governance
  • Enriching the collection: the ethics of acquisitions
  • Digitising collections: inventory and its placement online
  • Restoring collections: between protecting and promoting
  • Documenting collections: libraries and museums
  • Publishing collections: editorial strategy for museums
  • Classifying collections: the treasures of the French Community
  • Circulating collections: loans, deposits and exhibitions
  • Displaying collections: permanent scenography
  • Animating collections: mediation and its innovations
  • Renewing collections: the temporary exhibition and its challenges

Learning outcomes of the learning unit

By the conclusion of this voluntarily immersive and professionalising course, students will have acquired a concrete vision of:

  • the world of museums and the diverse nature of its professions;
  • museums' reasons for existing, missions and challenges in the current day;
  • how an important Belgian museum institution functions;
  • specific projects developed for the benefit of heritage and society;
  • the professional journey of numerous members of Belgium's museum sector.
Many students from the Faculty of Philosophy and Letters will find a place in the cultural world, notably that of museums.

Prerequisite knowledge and skills

There are no prerequisites. The course is accessible for all and intended to be open to diverse fields (History of Art and Archaeology, History, Sciences of Antiquity, Media Studies, Culture and Communication, Roman Languages and Literature). Students enrolled in History of Art and Archaeology, with a specialised focus on Museum Studies, will identify natural associations with other courses from the program in which they are enrolled.

Planned learning activities and teaching methods

This course will at the same time be dynamic and collaborative. Classes will afford an opportunity to hear multiple viewpoints, with various types of professionals currently active in Belgium having been invited to come and share their experiences and interact with the students. Each session will feature both presentations and discussions. The course therefore changes from one year to the next based on the invited speakers and subjects covered.

Going from the university to the museum, the course will include one (or some) excursion(s) intended to place the students in the real conditions of a museum environment, in direct contact with some of the heritage that is preserved there. One day, planned for spring 2023, will be organised at the Domaine de Mariemont in order to discover the richness of the collections as well as the primary exhibition being held then.

Mode of delivery (face to face, distance learning, hybrid learning)

Face-to-face course

Recommended or required readings

Some suggested readings (optional):

- Dominique POULOT, Patrimoine et musées. L'institution de la culture, 2nd edn, Paris: Hachette, 2014.
- André GOB, Noémie DROUGUET, La muséologie. Histoire, développements, enjeux actuels, 5th edn, Paris: Armand Colin, 2021.
- Daphné PAREE, Du rêve du collectionneur aux réalités d'un musée. L'histoire du Musée de Mariemont (1917-1960), Bruxelles: Éditions de l'Université de Bruxelles, 2017.
- Krzysztof POMIAN, Le musée, une histoire mondiale, Paris: Gallimard, 2020-.
- Serge CHAUMIER, François MAIRESSE, La médiation culturelle, 2nd edn, Paris: Armand Colin, 2017.
- Carole BENALTEAU, Olivier BERTHON, Marion BENALTEAU, Anne LEMONNIER, Concevoir et réaliser une exposition. Les métiers, les Méthodes, 3rd edn, Paris: Eyrolles, 2021.
- Jean-Michel TOBELEM, La gestion des institutions culturelles. Musées, patrimoine, centres d'art, 3rd edn, Paris: Armand Colin, 2017.

Exam(s) in session

Any session

- In-person

oral exam

Written work / report

Work placement(s)

There will be a short research internship in a museum setting (conducted in person and/or remotely) with the goal of documenting an object (or a group of objects) and considering methods of promoting it. This internship could lead, for the students who wish it, to Master's thesis conducted between the museum and the university.

Organisational remarks and main changes to the course

During the 2023-2024 academic year, the course will be given during the second semester, every Monday from 3pm to 5pm in classroom R/30 (Building A4, Quai Roosevelt, 1B, 4000 Liège).

A field trip to the Domaine of Mariemont will be organized for Saturday, April 20th, 2024.


Faculty Member: Dr Richard VEYMIERS 

Chargé de cours à l'Université de Liège (Département des sciences historiques, Quai Roosevelt, 1b - Bât. A4)

Directeur du Domaine & Musée royal de Mariemont (100, Chaussée de Mariemont, 7140 Morlanwelz).

Please contact me:

- via email at richard.veymiers@uliege.be 

- via phone to the Mariemont executive secretary at +32 64 27 37 52

Association of one or more MOOCs