The Museum Accreditation Scheme is the UK industry standard for museums and galleries.
The scheme works for museums of all sizes: from the smallest volunteer-run museums to national museums. There are around 250 Accredited museums in Scotland.
To achieve Accreditation, a museum must meet published 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, Welsh Government
The Accreditation Standard and associated guidance were last updated and published in 2018/2019 following a review. To find out more about the changes, watch our video:
Benefits of Accreditation
- Performance: A quality standard that 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 general public.
- People: It helps museums to improve their focus on meeting museum users’ needs and interests and on developing their workforce.
- Partnerships: It helps museums to examine their services and to 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 and giving investors confidence in the organisation.
Achieving this status has helped Accredited 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
Learn more about the Accreditation Scheme application process.
Listen to our podcast where Alix Powers Jones, Property Manager at Hugh Miller's Birthplace Cottage and Museum and Accreditation Mentor for the Highlander's museum at Fort George gives her perspective of what it is like going through a museum Accreditation return and how she finds the ‘process’ akin to making the perfect cake!
List of Scotland’s Accredited museums.
If your museum is already Accredited and you are looking for your next return date, please see our Accreditation returns schedule.