The UK Museum Accreditation Scheme
The Museum Accreditation Scheme is the UK industry standard for museums and galleries. It ensures all museums within the scheme are resilient, well governed organisations that meet an agreed upon set of standards.
About the Scheme
The scheme works for museums of all sizes: from the smallest volunteer-run museums to national museums. There are 256 Accredited museums in Scotland.
To achieve Accreditation, a museum must meet requirements on:
- how it is governed and managed
- how it cares for and manages its collections
- the information and services it offers to museum users
Museums Galleries Scotland is the assessing organisation for museums in Scotland. The Accreditation Scheme is managed as a partnership between:
- Arts Council England
- Museums Galleries Scotland
- Northern Ireland Museums Council
- Museums, Archives and Libraries Division (MALD), Welsh Government
Benefits of Accreditation
Achieving the Accreditation standard has many benefits for a museum.
- Performance: A quality standard serves as an authoritative benchmark for assessing performance, rewarding achievement and driving improvement.
- Profile: It raises awareness and understanding of museums and builds confidence and credibility, both within the governing body and among the public.
- People: It helps museums to improve their focus to meet the needs of museum users, and on developing their workforce.
- Partnerships: It helps museums examine their services and encourage joint working within and between organisations.
- Planning: It helps with forward planning by formalising procedures and policies.
- Patronage: It demonstrates that a museum has met a national standard, strengthening applications for public and private funding. Giving investors confidence in the organisation.
Achieving Accredited Status has helped museums to:
- attract financial support from external sources
- show their fitness to receive sponsorship and donations
- raise awareness to stakeholders
- assess achievements
- improve planning skills
- improve morale
If your museum is already Accredited and you are looking for your next return date, please see our Accreditation returns schedule.
How Accreditation could work for your museum
Dr Alix Powers-Jones, Property Manager at Hugh Miller’s Birthplace and Museum, passed away in July 2023. Alix was passionate about the work of museums and a dedicated supporter to many museum colleagues starting their journey towards the Accreditation Standard. This recording of Alix in 2020 is a wonderful reminder of the enthusiasm she held for the work of the heritage sector in Scotland.