ACADEMIC ENGAGEMENT OPPORTUNITIES
The Ashmolean Faculty Fellowship scheme, funded by the Andrew W Mellon Foundation, offers faculty members from any department of the University a residency in the Museum of one day per week for one term, to undertake collections-based research aimed at developing new, object-led teaching at undergraduate or postgraduate level.
During their residency, Fellows are integrated into the life of the curatorial departments, given training in object handling and have access to curatorial support along with the collections database and reserve collections.
Six fellowships are normally awarded by open competition in each academic year, but the programme is currently suspended due to Covid-19. We hope to host fellows again in the academic year 2021-22, during which four fellowships will be awarded, and would welcome inquiries and applications.
In normal circumstances we welcome enquiries from faculty members in any discipline, at Oxford and beyond, who are interested in working with Ashmolean Curators and using the Museum’s collections and study rooms for teaching university classes and courses. Owing to the constraints of the Covid pandemic, access to the museum and its collections is not currently permitted and no object-centred, study-room teaching is possible at present.
In what we hope will be the near future we will be delighted to see you again and if you would like to include the museum in your curricular teaching please contact the Teaching Curator, Dr Jim Harris, in the first instance.
Ashmolean specialist curators can also provide guidance and support in devising and planning object-based classes and courses, and can collaborate in cross-disciplinary teaching. The Academic Engagement team is able to provide training in object-handling and object-centred teaching and advise on the suitability of material for study-room use.
Classes may be delivered in the Museum galleries or in one of our Study Rooms, providing students with the opportunity to examine and handle objects from the Museum's collections up-close.
Members of faculty who wish to teach classes independently and have already identified relevant objects from the collections are welcome to book a study room in the appropriate curatorial department.
Each department offers its own study room arrangements. Please contact them directly.
The Ashmolean is a founder member and key partner of Cabinet Oxford's award-winning online study and revision platform for university teaching.
Faculty members using the collections in teaching can use Cabinet to curate images of a selection of objects alongside related material, enabling students to access and study them remotely. The platform allows users to annotate images and add further resources, making this a richly interactive, crowd-sourced, digital environment. For more information about Cabinet, please visit the website of the University's Centre for Teaching and Learning.
In addition, the Ashmolean's Online Collections represent a growing resource for students and faculty members to familiarise themselves with the contents of the Museum.
Eloquent Things is a short course intended as an introduction to the principles and practice of teaching with objects, comprising four mornings spread over a single week in the study rooms and galleries of the Ashmolean Museum.
The course is offered through the Humanities Division Doctoral Training Programme but is also open to postdocs and ECRs from other divisions. Members of faculty interested in learning more about collections-based teaching are also welcome.
The Ashmolean Junior Teaching Fellows are the leaders of Krasis, an award-winning programme designed to bring together early-career researchers and undergraduates in a series of cross-disciplinary symposia held at the Ashmolean and centred on objects from the Museum’s peerless collections.
The Fellows come from disciplines as diverse as Music, Japanese Studies, Material Physics, French and Anthropology, usually after undertaking the Eloquent Things course. The participants in the symposia are the Krasis Scholars, undergraduate or Master’s students from any subject and at any stage of their university career.
The programme usually involves a commitment to four Wednesday afternoons per term for two terms and a preparatory meeting in 0th week. During the Covid pandemic, whilst Krasis is meeting online, the group is not divided in two and all the Fellows contribute to all eight sessions.
During the term, Fellows meet individually with the Teaching Curator to prepare their individual symposia. Half the cohort of eight Fellows is renewed with each iteration of the programme, meaning four new Fellowships are offered each term.
Talking Sense was an interdisciplinary research project for the 2018-19 academic year, developed by a group of early-career scholars in partnership with the Ashmolean Museum.
The project brought together a group of DPhil students and post-doctoral scholars from different academic disciplines to explore the subject of the senses in museum-based workshops leading to the writing and delivery of a series of research-led, public gallery talks.
Talking Sense was completed in 2019, but click here to find out more about the project and see Talking Emotions to find out about more recent work in Public Engagement with early-career research.
Talking Emotions is an interdisciplinary research project for the 2019-20 academic year that offers a unique opportunity for DPhil students and post-doctoral researchers to enrich their own research and public engagement skills through in-depth engagement with the Ashmolean Museum’s collections.
Through a series of workshops and object-handling sessions, participants explored the theme of emotions in relation to their research interests, with a view to delivering a series of public gallery talks on an object of their choice.
Due to the COVID-19 crisis, these talks have had to be postponed but we are now recording podcasts of the series, which will be available in Summer 2021.
Click here for further details on the project.
The Krasis Scholars are the principal participants in Krasis, an award-winning programme designed to bring together early-career researchers and undergraduates in a series of cross-disciplinary symposia, held at the Ashmolean Museum and centred on objects from the Museum’s peerless collections.
Krasis Scholars are undergraduate and masters students from any discipline and at any stage of their university career. It is they who make Krasis tick, who ask the questions, find the answers and make the arguments from the unique standpoint of their own disciplinary specialism.
You can read a little about the Krasis experience in this blogpost by Mary Caple, who was a Krasis Scholar in Hilary 2019.
The programme involves a commitment to four Wednesday afternoon symposia over the course of a term, and a preliminary meeting in 0th week. However, during the Covid pandemic, whilst the programme is operating online, all the Krasis Scholars and Ashmolean Junior Teaching Fellows are invited to take part in all eight symposia.
Our Museum Our Voices (OMOV) is a key outworking of Ashmolean for All, the Museum's commitment to increase the diversity of our collections interpretation, embracing a wider range of community and university participation in the life of the Museum and building greater equity of access to and ownership of our collections.
The first iteration of the programme, under the guidance of archaeologist and former UEP Administrator Penny Coombe, was led by a cohort of undergradate and graduate students in the University who locate themselves within a wide range of diverse ethnicities and/or a wide spectrum of LGBTQ+ identities, and places their voices at the centre of the museum's displays and collections.
The OMOV 2020 team wrote and curated a series of alternative labels, presenting their own perspectives on particular objects in the collections - perspectives which have historically been marginalised in the Ashmolean's public galleries. The labels were installed in December 2020, forming an OMOV trail around the galleries. With the Museum closed due to the Covid pandemic, the installation of the labels has been accompanied by a website presenting the work of the team in a virtual trail around the Ashmolean.
During the Covid pandemic we are working on OMOV 2021, listening to the voices of sixth formers from Oxford schools, whilst over the course of the coming months we will be recruiting a new team to take Our Museum Our Voices into 2022, looking at the world of the Ashmolean collections from the standpoint of Oxford's rich and diverse Islamic communities.
We will need your experience, insight, and enthusiasm to make this happen. If you're interested in joining us, or would like to learn more, please get in touch with us at UEP@ashmus.ox.ac.uk
It will not be necessary to be a member of the University to participate in OMOV 2022, though University students and faculty are welcome to apply.
If you're interested in volunteering at the Ashmolean, then your starting point should be the Joint Museums Volunteer Service, which coordinates a pool of volunteers across all the Oxford University museums.
All our volunteering opportunities are advertised through the Volunteer Service, so please see their website for more information.