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Access the Collections

The Museum's vast and varied collections are in active service to the University of Pennsylvania community and researchers from all over the world.

Mittens from the collection in the Collections Study Room.

The Museum's vast and varied collections are in active service to the University of Pennsylvania community and researchers from all over the world.

We have world-class collections of objects from Africa, the Americas, Asia, Oceania, ancient Egypt*, the Mediterranean, and the Near East, as well as extensive photographic, film, and document archives and a significant collection of biological specimens and remains in our Physical Anthropology collection. We make every effort to accommodate research requests, however, mitigating circumstances (including but not limited to inaccessibility, fragility, publication status, sacred nature, construction, and time constraints) may restrict access to some materials.

*Due to building renovations and gallery development work, the Egyptian Section is currently unable to support research requests. We apologize for any inconvenience.

For specific requests, please download and complete the form and email it to the relevant Contact Person listed in the form.

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A Resource For the Penn Community

A Penn class in the Collections Study Room examining an object. A student using a microscope to research the collection.

The Penn Museum is committed to fostering student engagement with our collections. We welcome and encourage faculty, instructors, and teaching assistants to integrate the large and diverse collections of the Museum into their curriculum.

Learn more about class visits

The Museum’s nearly one million artifacts are primary sources of the cultures that made and used them, from which students can draw information or inspiration whether for a senior thesis, master’s thesis, dissertation, journal article, conference poster, or independent study.

Learn more about student Collections and Archives access