MASTER Intangible Cultural Heritage (vocational M2)

This specialised professional M2 responds to the needs outlined in the UNESCO Convention for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage (2003). Covering a wide range of cultural knowledge and abilities (performing arts, music, architecture, etc.), as well as specific and general professional knowledge and skills (law, management, software, etc.), it aims at developing the necessary competencies for working in the challenging areas of ICH inventorying, conservation and valorisation.

  • Objectives

Necessarily aimed at students capable of adaptability, the objective of this Master's degree is to develop the required competencies for professional life in the vast, complex and protean ICH field, which, according to the definition given in the 2003 UNESCO convention, comprises a rich range of oral traditions, performing arts, social practices, festive rites and events, knowledge and practices pertaining to nature and the universe, and know-how related to craft traditions.

The degree seeks to render students capable of taking charge of intangible heritage projects of all kinds by equipping them with a carefully considered range of intellectual and methodological tools. Besides theoretical knowledge, this degree confers practical competencies, both adapted to specific areas of the ICH field (inventorying, promotion of ICH visibility and recognition, etc.) and of a boundary-crossing nature (cultural heritage law, administrative law, collectivity and community rights, project development and management, etc.). The undertaking of an internship is an essential part of this Master's degree and an important means of student assessment.

In order to enter fully into the specificities of ICH objects and their treatment, the syllabus draws on several components of the University François Rabelais of Tours and the IEHCA (European Institute for the History and Culture of Food), and also benefits from the participation of professionals from other sectors. The different course units (UE) encourage in-depth consideration and study of the notion of ICH, the 2003 UNESCO convention, French policies concerning intangible heritage, the ICH classification system (starting with the application process), intangible heritage inventories and ICH research programmes. In collaboration with the DGP (General Direction of Heritage – Department of Research and Scientific Policy), a panel of specialists and a network of sites (in France and abroad) have been set up to help students enrolled in this master's degree find and carry out internships and provide them with advice for their professional future.

The professional spheres that this degree gives access to include associations, the cultural sector (public and semi-public), territorial collectivities (municipalities, regions), museums, festivals and, in general, all areas involved in valorising ICH.
  • List of courses or subjects covered by the syllabus

UE 16 Tools (2 obligatory courses): Digital text publishing; Digital image publishing 

UE 17 Techniques (1 obligatory course; 1 selected course): Heritage communication; Project development; Intangible heritage diffusion and promotion; Event monitoring

UE 18 Knowledge and Know-how (3 selected courses): Cultural epistemology; Theatrical practices; Written-spoken corpus; Professional heritage; Musical performance

UE 19 Knowledge and Know-how (3 selected courses): Architectural heritage; Artistic heritage; History of collections; Food

UE 20 Production tools (2 selected courses): Online publishing; Musical publishing; Video editing; Sound editing

UE 21 Professional tools (2 selected courses): Cultural heritage law; Administrative and collectivity law; Cultural institution management

UE 22 Internship and internship report

The length of the internship is three months. It constitutes an important part of the second semester’s work-load and forms the basis on which the student's capacity to integrate into the professional world is assessed. The internship report is considered as a reference document and is defended orally by the student in June/July: the professional hosts of the intern are required to be present at this defence. The choice of the hosting organisation (enterprises, institutions, research laboratories, etc.) is made with the help of a personal supervisor during the first term. The internship may be undertaken abroad.

  • Admission requirements

Applications to this M2 may be submitted by all students holding an M1 in a compatible domain (or a diploma judged as equivalent by a pedagogical committee) and by professionals engaged in ongoing training (in this case, candidates may be asked to provide professional credentials). The number of places is limited. Selection is based on a written application and an interview. Elementary skills in text and image processing, a minimal artistic education and some knowledge of the heritage field are expected.