Category Archives: Introduction

Museum Research Apprenticeship program at the University of Alaska Museum

This program consists of an introductory and advanced course (MRAP 288 & 488). Each course is a once- or twice-weekly laboratory or collections-based offering for undergraduate students eager to obtain hands-on training and experience in museum science. The courses are 1 or 2 credits (3 or 6 hr/week) and can each be repeated across semesters to explore breadth and to enhance depth. This is a rare opportunity to learn hands-on museum science.

The University of Alaska Museum of the North is Alaska’s de facto repository of natural history specimens and cultural objects, and we house multiple world-class research collections. Processing incoming specimens or objects and their associated data is a critical ongoing set of highly specialized tasks. Some of these tasks, for example, turn organisms into scientific specimens that are useful for questions in areas as diverse as evolution, ecology, genetics, conservation, and the changing environment. Others process objects of historic or contemporary culture or art for preservation and study of myriad questions about humans, past and present. Careful documentation and preservation are key parts of these processes, and these courses involve hands-on training and working research experience with specimens and objects and their associated data.