Museum Digitisation Equipment Purchase. Burke Museum and Deakin University Online Cataloguing Program.
Beechworth’s Burke Museum is Australia’s oldest regional museum. In 2021 the museum launched a ground-breaking partnership with Deakin University to provide online internships to Museums and Cultural Heritage students from across Australia.
Volunteering and internships are an integral part of the education of future museum professionals. Developed in response to the COVID-19 lockdowns, this program will allow students to gain real-world, professional skills from the safety of their own homes. Students will work with the museum’s Collections Manager to undertake cataloguing of digitised objects dating back to the museum’s founding in 1856. This skill is a core function of museum practice, and will set the students with valuable vocational experience.
Digitised collections will be shared online on the Victorian Collections website, a free and publicly accessible museum collection management system. This will allow the museum to share its history with researchers, students and interested members of the public anywhere in the world.
Staff at the Burke Museum provide the students with high quality, digital images of all objects to be catalogued. Three dimensional objects are currently being photographed in the museum’s photography studio. However, the museum requires specialised equipment to scan edit two-dimensional works (artworks, photographs, documents and maps) to an archival quality standard.
This grant application requests funding to purchase professional quality equipment to undertake this scanning and editing work, so that the museum’s collections can be captured at a high enough quality to ensure the preservation of the objects.