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The Details
  • Course Dates & Fees

    Course Dates & Fees

    February 16 - March 29, 2022
    Tuition includes six weeks of instructor guidance and an additional 90 days to review the course at your leisure.
    We offer this online course throughout the year with sessions starting approximately every four months. Contact us for more information.
  • Getting Started & How It Works

    Getting Started & How It Works

    SIA Online Community, our learning and networking space, opens two weeks before the course begins. This space provides an opportunity to familiarize yourself with the learning platform and introduce yourself to fellow students from around the world.
    Visit our How It Works page to learn more about the online learning experience.
  • Sample Topics

    Sample Topics

    Week 1: Why Collect?

    • Overview of Collecting

    • Deciding on a Collection Focus

    Week 2: Looking and Learning

    • How to be an Educated Collector

    • Key Considerations in What to Look for

    Week 3: The Marketplace: Dollars and Sense

    • Auction Market

    • Retail Market

    • Understanding Price Databases

    Week 4: The Hunt

    • What Venues to Visit – Auctions, Galleries, Fairs, and Online Sites

    Week 5: Caveat Emptor

    • What a Collector is Responsible for

    • Fakes and Forgeries

    • Due Diligence

    Week 6: The Acquisition

    • Art Advisors

    • Buying at Auction

    • Making the Offer at a Gallery

    • What Next

  • Faculty


    Betsy Thomas, Faculty, M.A. Art Business, Online and Summer Institute, New York
    M.A., Courtauld Institute of Art; B.A., Pomona College
    Betsy Thomas is the founder of a boutique art advisory firm providing professional representation for collectors. She advises on buying and selling in all areas of fine art from Old Master, American & 19th C. paintings to Impressionist, Modern & Contemporary Masters. Previously Betsy was Vice President and Associate Specialist in the 19th Century European Paintings Department at Christie’s. Throughout her career, she has worked closely with private collectors and institutions developing high-quality collections as well as managing sales of estates, private and corporate collections. She is a frequent contributor to Fine Art Connoisseur Magazine. Betsy serves as the U.S. Alumni Chair for the Courtauld Institute.
  • Course Completion

    Course Completion

    For successfully completing this course, you receive a verified Certificate of Completion from Sotheby’s Institute of Art as well as 2.3 IACET Continuing Education Units. *
    Our digital certificates allow you to share new skills with various social media platforms, including LinkedIn. Successful completion is defined by each instructor in the course syllabus and consists, at the least, of regular, thoughtful participation in online activities and timely submission of assigned papers or projects.
    *As an IACET Accredited Provider, Sotheby’s Institute of Art offers IACET CEUs for its learning events that comply with the ANSI/IACET Continuing Education and Training Standard.
  • Register


    Click here to register.
    This course is listed under the Premier Course option in the online application. Premier Online Courses are open to anyone 18 years of age and older. Registration takes approximately 5 minutes to complete.
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