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Course content

We are highly regarded within the sector nationally and internationally for this vocational MSc Care of Collections programme, which offers exceptional training in preventive conservation and the management of cultural and heritage collections regardless of humanities or science background.

You will become adept in the skills essential for a heritage career including project design and report writing, and gain valuable museum or heritage experience.

Twinned with a heritage organisation in the UK, you will experience collection management and operation in the working environment. You are not expected to have a high level of scientific knowledge for this programme, but a strong interest in the subject is anticipated.

Designed with entry to the heritage profession in mind, our stimulating programme embodies elements of art and science and includes a wide range of transferable skills.

Distinctive features

• Our range of programmes is designed for all entry levels, from experienced practitioner to graduate wishing to enter the sector.

• Taught by internationally-recognised experts in the field.

• The degree offers specialist skills for building a portfolio of qualifications for entry to the museum sector.

• You will be ‘twinned’ with a real heritage organisation and have the opportunity to study the operation of this organisation and how it relates to the care of collections.

• Committed to opening up the profession regardless of discipline background, we do not presume a significant level of scientific knowledge.

• High proportion of transferable skills (particularly in research, project design and report writing).


You take a total of 180 credits of modules over 1 year full-time or three years part-time.

This consists of 120 credits of taught modules and, following successful completion of the taught stage, a 60-credit dissertation.

Core modules:

Assessment & Design for Collections Care
Postgraduate Skills in Archaeology and Conservation
Skills and Methods for Postgraduate Study
MSc Conservation Dissertation

Optional modules:

Scientific Approach in Conservation Practice
Analysis in Heritage Science
Collection Care in the Museum Environment
Materials in the Museum Environment


You will be taught via seminars, lectures and assessed work to combine theoretical knowledge with realistic practical applications, including in partner museum and related heritage organisations.


Assessment is via essays, exams, oral presentations and reports, to ensure you develop a broad range of skills and underpinning knowledge to become adept in appropriate communication by the completion of the course.

On successful completion of the taught elements of the programme you progress to a dissertation of up to 20,000 words. This self-regulated year of study is ideal preparation for progression to PhD.

Career prospects

Graduates of this and similar degree programmes have embarked on careers in a range of professions from academia, the heritage sector, journalism and law to media research (media, commercial, academic), teaching and publishing. A significant number choose to continue studies at PhD level.

Recent graduate destinations include CADW, Church in Wales, Council for British Archaeology, Glamorgan Archives, Heritage Lottery Fund, National Trust, Tate Gallery, Welsh Assembly Government and a range of universities in the UK and overseas.

Visit the Care of Collections MSc page on the Cardiff University website for more details!





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