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Course Content

Course content

Designed for students wishing to pursue a career in the practice of heritage conservation, this programme consists of one year's training at the institute, with an emphasis on developing practical experience under specialist guidance in the conservation laboratories, followed by a ten-month assessed conservation work placement in a museum or similar institution.

About this degree

Students gain an in-depth understanding of, and foundation training in, the practice of conservation of heritage objects and develop critically aware approaches to diagnosis, problem solving, decision making and application of conservation treatments. They gain practical training and experience of the professional context in which conservation takes place.

Students undertake modules to the value of 360 credits.

The programme consists of three core modules (120 credits), in year one, a dissertation (90 credits), and an internship (150 credits) in year two.

Year one

  • Conservation Processess
  • Conservation Studies
  • Conservation: Materials Science

Dissertation/report

All MSc students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of 15,000 words (90 credits).

Teaching and learning

The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars, practical demonstrations, practical sessions and one-to-one tutorials. The programme is assessed in year one through essays, projects and conservation practical work on museum-quality objects; and in year two, through practical projects, progress reports and oral presentation.

Placement

During their second year, all students undertake supervised work experience in a professional environment. 

Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Conservation for Archaeology and Museums MSc

Careers

A very high proportion of our graduates go on to pursue careers in conservation in local and national museums, and heritage organisations (in the UK, Europe, USA and Asia). In addition graduates also progress to doctoral studies at both UCL and elsewhere.

Employability

The programme prepares students for entry into the conservation profession on graduation and ensures that graduates are able to meet the challenges of a long-term career as a practising conservator.

Why study this degree at UCL?

The UCL Institute of Archaeology has an established and widely recognised strength in providing academic and professional training in the practice of conservation, and many of its graduates are now employed in key posts around the world.

Students benefit from the institute's lively international involvement in archaeology and heritage, from its well-equipped facilities, and access to the UCL's extensive science, art and archaeology collections.

The institute's conservation laboratories provide a modern and pleasant learning environment, while the Wolfson Archaeological Science Laboratories provide excellent facilities for the examination and analysis of a wide variety of archaeological materials.

Research Excellence Framework (REF)

The Research Excellence Framework, or REF, is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The 2014 REF was carried out by the UK's higher education funding bodies, and the results used to allocate research funding from 2015/16.

The following REF score was awarded to the department: Institute of Archaeology

73% rated 4* (‘world-leading’) or 3* (‘internationally excellent’)

Learn more about the scope of UCL's research, and browse case studies, on our Research Impact website.


Visit the Conservation for Archaeology and Museums (MSc) page on the University College London website for more details!

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