Course Overview by Semester

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Check here for more details on which semester each course is offered.

Please note: for Spring 2020, all of our classes will be taught online. Classes marked as "on campus" on this page will be held remotely using Moodle, and will show up in SPIRE as "Fully Remote." Please be careful when enrolling in courses in SPIRE. If you are uncertain which section to enroll in, please contact us at aes@umass.edu and we will be happy to help.

Introduction to Arts Management

ARTS-EXT 500 / LLAMS 1

Arts Managers perform the work that is required to bring the arts and cultural programs to audiences, organizing programs such as festivals and exhibits, performing arts events and film screenings.  This course will introduce you to the "business of the arts," providing you with an overview of the careers in arts management, the types of work that arts managers do, and the current issues and trends now affecting arts management professionals.

This course is designed for individuals who are new to the field of arts management, are considering an arts management career, or are interested in arts management principles for the purposes of starting one's own nonprofit.  This course is a requirement for all students joining the Arts Management program who have no prior experience in the field. View sample syllabus here.

Catalog #
LLAMS 01 Online Non-Credit Course Class Details
ARTS-EXT 500 On Campus Class Details
ARTS-EXT 500 Online Class Details

Arts Fundraising

ARTS-EXT 501 / LLAMS 12

Recent statistics show that while most nonprofit arts organizations will earn half their income, the rest of the money it will take to sustain their operations must be raised from individual donors and grants. Other than earned income, the largest source of revenue for arts organizations continues to be individual donors. Now, more than ever, it is essential for arts managers to know how to develop and implement an effective fundraising program that draws its strength from a variety of sources, and focuses on building relationships as its foundation.

This course will present the principles and methods of raising funds for nonprofit arts organizations from individuals, business, government agencies and foundations. Practical assignments will focus on identifying potential sources, positioning the organization for fundraising, and developing effective strategies for acquiring funds. The course will culminate in the development of a fundraising action plan for your own nonprofit or a case study organization of your choosing. If interested in taking a course a la carte, contact AES about waiving the prerequisite.  View sample syllabus here.

Catalog #
ARTS-EXT 501 On Campus Class Details

Arts Marketing

ARTS-EXT 502 / LLAMS 13

Marketing is the most important tool to build awareness of your programs and services, and—if properly planned—can help you to reach new audiences and cultivate loyalty in your current audiences. This course will introduce you to the fundamentals of marketing for arts and cultural programs. You will learn basic marketing concepts, such as understanding the marketing mix, utilizing environmental analysis, developing positioning statements and branding an organization to help you formulate effective marketing strategies. Emphasis will be placed on understanding audiences and building participation in your programs and services.

Assignments will culminate in the development of a marketing plan for your own nonprofit or a case study organization of your choosing. This course is designed for individuals with all levels of marketing experience in arts organizations and nonprofit agencies. If interested in taking a course a la carte, contact AES about waiving the prerequisite. View sample syllabus here.

Catalog #
LLAMS 13 Online Non-Credit Course Class Details
ARTS-EXT 502 On Campus Class Details
ARTS-EXT 502 Online Class Details

Creative Community Leadership

ARTS-EXT 390D / LLAMS 24

Creative Community Leadership teaches art-centered activities that contribute to the sustained advancement of human dignity, health, and/or productivity within a community. This course teaches how to use the arts and the creative process as a tool for social change, as well as the skills to practice effective creative community collaboration and partnership development. In this course you will: explore the structure and dynamics of social and cultural ecosystems and strategies for working effectively within them; develop awareness of how race, rank and privilege affect community cultural development; and acquire and practice adaptive leadership and inquiry-based learning skills as keys to successful work in change-constant environments.

Issues from Black Lives Matter, DAPL and Climate Change unrest, and COVID-19 disruptions have exposed a need for new support systems (training, research, advocacy, funding, networks, etc.,) to advance the further development of the expanding and diversifying Creative Community field. Research has shown the most effective community arts partnerships are painstakingly developed over time. These exemplars have also taught us that working across sectors in fast-changing communities is complicated and messy. As such, fostering agile, assertive cross-sector leadership will be an essential component of effective community arts infrastructure. This course will provide leadership training to support cultural practice as an overarching resource for advancing collaborative, creative problem solving and innovation across multiple community sectors.

Collaborations provoke a wide range of new and intriguing questions about the role of the arts in society and the future of community cultural leadership. How do the arts contribute to safe communities? How can cross-sector arts partnerships help planners, police, health care workers, community organizers, and the like be more effective in their service to their communities? And, what is the argument that the arts community must make to advance the integration of cultural resources into the heart of community life?

Catalog #
LLAMS 24 Online Non-Credit Course Class Details
ARTS-EXT 390D Online Class Details

Cultural Policy and Advocacy

ARTS-EXT 390B / LLAMS 23

Cultural policy is the aggregate of what governments do, or fail to do, to encourage the arts and humanities to apply creative/cultural solutions in the arts and other civic sectors. Cultural policies of governments in the United States have evolved from being centered on artists, arts organizations, and arts audiences, to more widely apply the arts and humanities into civic affairs. With a backdrop of progressively diminishing funding for the arts and a move toward embedding the arts in social change, community engagement, and projects from the Creative Economy to Creative Placemaking, it is policy that determines focus - and advocacy can push policy. 

Changes in political climate and value-driven ideologies have spurred this shifting of the lens through which governments view the arts. In this course, students will learn the basic principles behind public policy, historical and current development of cultural policies, the gatekeepers who enforce cultural policies, and how they can deftly position themselves through advocacy to address intended and unintended political forces.  If interested in taking a course a la carte, contact AES about waiving the prerequisite. View sample syllabus here.

Catalog #
LLAMS 23 Online Non-Credit Course Class Details
ARTS-EXT390B Online Class Details

Foundations in Arts Entrepreneurship

ARTS-EXT 391A / LLAMS 21

This course is designed as a primer in arts entrepreneurship and explore creating your own artist-based business. Students will examine the breadth of professional opportunities and explore strategies for pursuing them. Students will construct a personal mission statement, build an individualized portfolio of materials appropriate for professional development purposes, and begin a journal to formulate, collect, and grow creative venture ideas. Topics will include creative visioning, an introduction to the for-profit and non-profit economies, budgeting and relevant arts policy. Note: *This course does not count towards the online Core Certificate in Arts Management. It does count towards the Campus and online Professional Certificates. If interested in taking a course a la carte, contact AES about waiving the prerequisite.  View sample syllabus here.

Catalog #
LLAMS 21 Online Non-Credit Course Class Details
ARTS-EXT 391A On Campus Class Details
ARTS-EXT 391A Online Class Details

Grantwriting for the Arts

ARTS-EXT 511 / LLAMS 20

Grantwriting is one of many tools in fundraising and is a necessary skill for arts managers and artists who seek to support their work with grants.  This course will teach the nuts and bolts of grantsmanship, including introducing the vocabulary and philosophy of grantwriting, the hallmarks of a well-written proposal, and the basics of grant searching. 

The class will use a Common Grant application as its organizing principle, selected because it is comprehensive and reflects a growing trend in grantmaking.  Students will learn the essential skills of grantwriting, how to describe a cultural program’s mission, goals and program to grantmakers within space limits, writing in teams, critiquing a grant, and planning a budget. Students will conclude the course by writing a comprehensive and ready-to-submit grant for their nonprofit or a case study organization. If interested in taking a course a la carte, contact AES about waiving the prerequisite. View sample syllabus here.

Catalog #
ARTS-EXT 511 On Campus Class Details