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Becoming a Docent

Become a part of our historical organization -- the Philbrook docents.

Are you interested in art and communicating with people? Philbrook Museum is accepting applications from individuals interested in becoming a Philbrook docent. No previous museum experience or knowledge of the arts is necessary.

What is a Docent?

A docent is a teacher, serving the museum and community in the field of education. The word docent is derived from the Latin worddocere, meaning to teach. Philbrook docents are knowledgeable, enthusiastic volunteers who act as liaisons between the Museum and the general public.

What do Philbrook Docents do?

Touring: Docents serve as guides for groups of museum visitors, both children and adults. Docents also have opportunities to help visitors enjoy their museum experience through casual touring.

Research: Docents assist the museum’s education staff in preparing background information on works of art in the museum’s collection, special exhibitions and new acquisitions.

Outreach: Docents give presentations at schools and to community organizations.

Facilitate: Docents conduct experiential art activities with museum visitors. 

How long will training take?

The Docent Intern Training Program is facilitated over a nine month period of time (27 three hour sessions).

What does the training program involve?

Docent Intern Training prepares prospective docents to conduct tours of Philbrook’s permanent collection and facilitate museum related experiential activities. Interested people should not feel intimidated–an art history or education background is not required– the Intern Training will provide the learning necessary to become a successful docent. Philbrook’s docents come from a wide range of professions and backgrounds.

How much time and commitment will be required?

Docent Interns meet three hours a week. Class will be held on Tuesday mornings from 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.. Additional hours are required for practice tours and attending various museum related continuing education opportunities.


Docents are required to be members of the Philbrook Museum of Art and are expected to fulfill touring and continuing education obligations (e.g., 25 touring hours for the first two years, plus obtain five continuing education credits per year).

Why should I consider becoming a docent?

Docents can expect to be rewarded with life long learning opportunities in the arts, camaraderie of Philbrook’s docents and staff, and satisfying experiences from sharing your knowledge with museum visitors. 

How do I become a docent?

Interested individuals apply to become a Museum docent through the Education Coordinator. Please complete the Docent or Volunteer Application Form and the Education Coordinator will contact you directly. 

Scheduling a Tour

Groups of 10 or more paying adults qualify for a discounted general admission. $7 each at the Main location. $5 each at Philbrook Downtown. This is $2 off regular admission per guest.