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Heritage Studies Courses

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Cultural heritage is an integral part of our economy as Caribbean people.  Persons who are involved in (or who want to enter) this aspect of our tourism industries need to update their skills not only to improve the way they do their jobs, but in order to move into other areas or to advance their careers. This may be your opportunity to gain new knowledge/experience or launch into a new career.

About the courses

In seeking to enhance the capability of heritage professionals in the Caribbean and beyond, The Organization of American States (OAS), in collaboration with The University of the West Indies Open Campus, is offering two (2) graduate courses in the area of heritage studies – Museum Conservation Skills and Values-based Heritage Site Management. 

The overall aim of the courses is to ensure that, in the pursuit of Cultural Tourism, the balance between the Culture and Tourism sectors is maintained in order to promote sustainable development within OAS member countries. These courses will assist heritage professionals to adequately manage heritage sites and artefacts in the interest of protecting their value and preserving their integrity and authenticity. Participants will be given the opportunity to interact with cultural/heritage sites/artefacts in a practical way and develop additional expertise in heritage management, conservation and assessment.

Museum Conservation Skills

This course is designed to provide participants with comprehensive exposure to preventive conservation. Participants will be exposed to methods of mitigating deterioration and safeguarding collections through disaster and recovery planning thus enabling them to make informed decisions about the handling and management of cultural objects. The course will also equip participants with skills in disaster preparedness and management as it relates to these objects. Additionally, the course allows for the exploration of the different areas of collection policy development, record keeping and documentation, giving participants competence in effective museum collection management.  This course is pitched at the graduate level. 

The following areas will be explored:

  • Museum Management
  • Collection Management
  • Documentation and Record Keeping
  • Conservation
  • Disaster and Recovery Management

Values-based Heritage Site Management

Values-based management is a holistic approach that focuses on the conservation and communication of those values that make the site significant. In the course, Values-based Heritage Site Management, participants will be exposed to a values-based approach within the context of Caribbean heritage.

Participants will be taught how to develop and execute a management plan within the legal and regulatory environment of the site. They will also be introduced to the canons of site documentation, assessment, monitoring and evaluation. The course is designed to hone participants’ knowledge base and skill sets, thereby better equipping them for meaningful careers in the management of Caribbean heritage with an emphasis on maintaining the value of heritage sites.  Values-based management is a fairly new management approach that entails examining different heritage types, the range of threats to which heritage may be exposed, the diverse stakeholders associated with each site and importantly, the protection of values and significance of specific sites including those that are tourist attractions. The course is pitched at the graduate level and covers the following areas:

  • Values-based heritage management
  • Caribbean heritage sites in the context of values-based management
  • Documentation of the site
  • Assessments
  • Management of heritage sites
  • Implementing management plan
  • Monitoring & evaluation


Who are these courses for?

The courses are designed for persons currently working in the heritage/historic industry or heritage tourism, such as heritage studies, archaeology, museology, historic architecture, archiving, documenting, environmental studies or tourism. They would also be of interest to individuals with a background in those areas, although persons with other first degrees and working experience in heritage studies may also find the courses of great value.


Entry requirements


An undergraduate degree from an approved tertiary institution, or professional qualification or work experience deemed to be equivalent. 

Knowledge of heritage studies, archaeology, museology, historic architecture, archiving, documenting, environmental studies or tourism is desirable.


Availability & duration of courses

Museum Conservation Skills and Values-based Heritage Site Management are currently on offer now and both courses will run for thirteen (13 weeks)



On successful completion of each course, a Certificate of Achievement will be awarded.


Delivery mode

The programme is delivered fully online.  However, students will be required to carry out site visits in their respective countries.


How much will it cost?

The cost of each course is US$660. The OAS is also offering partial scholarships that will cover a maximum of 75% of the cost; interested applicants must apply for funding separately. Please contact Andra Salandy at for more information about your eligibility for a scholarship. To submit your scholarship application, fill out the scholarship form and send to by June 30, 2019.  Late applications will not be considered.


How To Apply?

All external applicants to The University of the West Indies must complete the “Special Admission Application Form”. This form is available online and through The UWI Open Campus Country Site. When submitting your application electronically, please state the following in the subject area “OAS Cultural Heritage Programme” of your email.

Forms should be submitted via your Local UWI Open Campus site. If you reside in a country that does not have a local Open Campus site, your application can be submitted to

Current UWI Students should follow the normal progress for applying to programmes. For additional queries regarding admission please refer to the information below: 

The University of the West Indies
The Assistant Registrar
Admissions & Registration
Graduate Programmes
Open Campus, St. Augustine
Trinidad, W.I.
Fax: (868) 663-4919