Most museums require curators to have a master’s degree in an appropriate discipline of the museum’s specialty—art, history, or archaeology—or in museum studies.

Some employers prefer that curators have a doctoral degree, particularly for positions in natural history or science museums. Earning two graduate degrees—in museum studies (museology) and a specialized subject—may give candidates an advantage in a competitive job market.

In small museums, curator positions may be available to people with a bachelor’s degree. Because curators, particularly those in small museums, may have administrative and managerial responsibilities, courses in business administration, public relations, marketing, and fundraising are recommended. For some positions, applicants need to have completed an internship of full-time museum work, as well as courses in museum practices.

What are Curators like?


Based on our pool of users, curators tend to be predominately artistic people. Take our career test to see what career interest category best describes you.

Curators by Strongest Interest Archetype

Based on sample of 317 Sokanu users

Are Curators happy?


Curators rank highly among careers. Overall they rank in the 83rd percentile of careers for satisfaction scores.

Curator Career Satisfaction by Dimension

Percentile among all careers

Education History of Curators

The most common degree held by curators is Art History. 15% of curators had a degree in art history before becoming curators. That is over 21 times the average across all careers. Anthropology And Archeology graduates are the second most common among curators, representing 11% of curators in the Sokanu user base, which is 8.7 times the average.

Curator Education History

This table shows which degrees people earn before becoming a Curator, compared to how often those degrees are obtained by people who earn at least one post secondary degree.

Degree % of curators % of population Multiple
Art History 14.5% 0.7% 21.5×
Anthropology And Archeology 10.7% 1.2% 8.7×
History 9.5% 2.2% 4.3×
Fine Arts 7.3% 1.9% 3.7×
English Literature 4.1% 4.9% 0.8×
Visual And Performing Arts 3.2% 0.2% 13.2×
Liberal Arts 2.5% 1.8% 1.4×
Sociology 2.5% 2.1% 1.2×
Communications 1.6% 3.3% 0.5×
Philosophy And Religious Studies 1.6% 1.6% 1.0×
Graphic Design 1.6% 1.3% 1.2×
Photography 1.6% 0.4% 4.5×
Biology 1.3% 3.5% 0.4×
Linguistics 1.3% 0.8% 1.6×
Foreign Language Studies 1.3% 1.3% 1.0×
Humanities 1.3% 0.4% 3.4×

Curator Education Levels

37% of curators have a master's degree. 32% of curators have a bachelor's degree.

No education 0%
High school diploma 1%
Associate's degree 0%
Bachelor's degree 32%
Master's degree 37%
Doctorate degree 30%

How to Become a Curator

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