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Skills for the Future

Skills for the Future trains and supports people from diverse backgrounds to start their careers in the museums and galleries sector. We run the project in partnership with the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Skills for Success Legacy

Developing the capacity of the sector to deliver accredited work based learning

Skills for Success built on the capacity of the sector to deliver accredited vocational qualifications by creating an MGS assessment centre and training sector professionals as assessors and internal verifiers. These assessors and verifiers will be able to deliver vocational qualifications for the benefit of the sector now the project is completed.

Skills for Success Legacy Programme

The Skills for Success Legacy programme is now underway and has been funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund. This programme involves training four former Skills For Success learners who are currently working in the sector to be Workplace Assessors.

These Assessors will help two candidates each, through the SVQ 3 in Museums and Galleries Practice over the next year.

Skills for Success highlighted a lack of progression routes for staff and the need to embed vocational learning. We will be offering non-graduate staff, who are currently working in the sector, the opportunity to undertake the qualification and a host of tailored CPD opportunities which will be fully funded.

The candidates will be supported by a sector based Assessor, a Programme Manager and their host organisation.

For more information about this qualification please have a look at this page on the SQA website.

If you would like more information about the programme or are interested in giving your staff the opportunity to upskill, get in touch with Markus Offer, Programme Manager and Skills Development Manager,

Previous Programmes

Skills for Success, Heritage Horizons and the MGS Interns Programme

Since 2011, 78 learners have successfully completed placements in museums and galleries across Scotland.  87% have gone on to find employment, with roles including Museum Managers, Curators, Collections Assistants and Learning Managers.  These vocational programmes have provided an alternative route of entry into the sector, improving training resources, and diversifying the workforce.

Skills for Success was the fourth vocational learning programme run by MGS. ‘Skills for Success’ was the largest programme to date and it received funding of £535,000 from the National Lottery Heritage Fund to help Scotland's museum sector to address issues including: a lack of diversity in the workforce; a lack of accessible entry and progression routes; the development of an accredited work based learning culture in museum sector organisations; and, to tackle vital skills gaps. This national learning programme provided 20 entry level and two management level non-graduates from diverse backgrounds with one year paid placements in museums across Scotland. Learners undertook roles vital to the sustainability of the sector, including: collections care and management; digitisation; fundraising and marketing; and, learning programmes and volunteer management. They also had access to a bespoke training programme and worked towards the SVQ3 in Museums and Galleries Practice. 

The Heritage Horizons Traineeship programme 2015-2016 provided the opportunity for non-graduates from a range of backgrounds to attain an SVQ level 3 vocational qualification in Museums and Galleries Practice alongside workplace learning during a 12-month paid placement in a host museum.

The MGS Interns Programme 2011-2014 supported 40 paid one-year internships which provided a high-quality work-based skills development opportunity for new entrants to the sector workforce. The programme addressed gaps that had been identified in core skills, each focussing on workplace learning in one of the areas of: collections care and management, digitisation, public programmes, and volunteer development management.



Evaluation of Interns Programme 2011 to 2014 (PDF, 1MB) Evaluation of Interns Programme 2011 to 2014 infographic (PDF, 3MB) Evaluation of the HLF Funded Heritage Horizons Programme (PDF, 1MB) Skills For Sucess Evaluation (PDF, 4MB)


To discuss the SVQ 3 in Museums and Galleries Practice, contact our Skills Development Managers.

Markus Offer
Programme Manager and Skills Development Manager
Telephone: 0131 550 4143

John Campbell
Senior Skills Development Manager
Telephone: 0131 550 4131