M.Sc. Conservation Practice

Cardiff University

Tuition fee:
  • € 7,074 / Year (EEA)
  • € 17,864 / Year (Non-EEA)
Start date: September  2015
Duration full-time: 24 months
  • English
Delivery mode: On Campus
Educational variant: Full-time

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This programme aims to provide a conservation qualification that encompasses theoretical and practical skills. It provides a comprehensive intellectual framework with which to interpret, synthesise and critically evaluate objects and collections, evidence from research and from written sources. Students develop a detailed understanding of conservation theory and practice via project management and conservation of objects.

The course is a two-year Masters programme. The first year of the programme is taught alongside existing undergraduate teaching and covers the underpinning skills and knowledge of conservation. The second year is taught at Masters level and shares its structure with other Masters courses. The Masters year incorporates a taught element which lasts for the first two semesters of study and is assessed at the end of this period; this is followed by a dissertation. In the summer between the two years there will be an eight-week placement working in conservation.

Special features of this course:
* The programme allows students with existing degrees to convert their qualification into a conservation degree which leaves them ready to enter the workforce.
* The opportunity to work on archaeological, historical, and cultural materials in a laboratory and to consider their value, use, legal and ethical context.
* The opportunity to gain a range of transferable skills.
* It offers students a chance to develop an exciting mix of practical and research skills encompassing: aesthetics; ethics; science; project management.


First Year:
All students take four compulsory training modules:

* Introduction to the Museum Environment
* Practical Projects 2
* HS 2339 Essentials of Conservation

Plus: For those students commencing the programme in even years:

* Metals Corrosion and Conservation
* Technology and materials
* Inorganic objects: Decay and Conservation

Or For those students commencing program in odd years

* Conservation of Wet Archaeological Wood
* Museolo
* Analysis of artefactsgy
* Organic Objects: Decay and Conservation

Second Year:
Taught Element (autumn and spring): All students study two larger modules to develop advanced conservation knowledge and skills:

* Advanced Practical Projects
* Method in Conservation

All students will also study the following four core skills modules:

* Writing Archaeology/Conservation
* Introduction to Research Methods
* Speaking Archaeology/Conservation
* Data Presentation and Interpretation

Second Year Dissertation (summer): Upon successful completion of their coursework, all students write a dissertation (maximum length 20,000 words) on a conservation related topic. This may be theory, practice or research-based and students are encouraged to focus their work on a real-life problem.


Suitable for graduates in archaeology, history, ancient history, conservation, science and chemistry, and other related and relevant disciplines.

Note: International students pursuing part-time programmes of study are not eligible for Tier 4 (General Student) visas and must have alternative leave to remain in the UK if they intend to study at the University in person.

English Language Requirements

IELTS band: 6.5
CAE score: (read more)

Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE) is part of the Cambridge English suite and is targeted at a high level (IELTS 6.5-8.0). It is an international English language exam set at the right level for academic and professional success. Developed by Cambridge English Language Assessment - part of the University of Cambridge - it helps you stand out from the crowd as a high achiever.

193 (Grade B)
TOEFL paper-based test score : 600

IMPORTANT NOTE: Since April 2014 the ETS tests (including TOEFL and TOEIC) are no longer accepted for Tier 4 visa applications to the United Kingdom. The university might still accept these tests to admit you to the university, but if you require a Tier 4 visa to enter the UK and begin your degree programme, these tests will not be sufficient to obtain your Visa.

The IELTS test is most widely accepted by universities and is also accepted for Tier 4 visas to the UK- learn more.

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