Heritage Resources Management

Athabasca University's Heritage Resources Management program is offered as an Undergraduate Certificate and as a Graduate Diploma.

Heritage Resource Management (HRM) involves working with those things of the past — both intangible and tangible — that a society determines are of value and worth preserving. It can thus involve many subjects, including history, archaeology, art history, paleontology, documentary heritage, science and technology, and cultural landscapes. It also requires many specialized practices. These include the work undertaken at archives, at a huge range of museums, interpretive centres, historic places and, among others, in connection with heritage landscapes. These many differences are one reflection of the vitality and range of the contemporary heritage field.

While respecting the many differences that are important in heritage practice, the program also draws on the commonalities that occur in heritage practice. Heritage practitioners, even when working in different types of institutions and with different types of heritage resources, often share many theoretical and practical concerns. For example, all have a common commitment to heritage as a public trust and most work in non-profit agencies. Other commonalities arise from similar objectives to preserve and conserve heritage and to deliver interpretive programming and services to the public and other client groups. Techniques and approaches used in interpretation, public programming, and conservation are also increasingly similar among most types of heritage institutions.

The strength of Athabasca University's HRM program is that while it stresses many of these common features in the heritage field, it also respects the differences that arise from different types of practice. Courses accordingly employ a broad framework within which general principles and approaches, case studies, and situations representative of various types of heritage practice are explored.

Updated February 28 2020 by Student & Academic Services