Conservation of the Historic Environment
This programme is designed primarily for property professionals specialising in or wishing to focus on conservation and heritage management. Examples include architects, architectural technicians, local authority conservation officers, surveyors, chartered builders, English Heritage officers, archaeologists and craftsmen.
- Focus on the conservation of historic buildings and landscapes
- Develop the specialist skills, understanding and sensitivity necessary to care for architectural heritage
- Progress to Membership of RICS and/or IHBC
- Enhance your career and develop specialist expertise to add to your business
- Retrain in an exciting new profession
This programme benefits from established links with the National Trust, English Heritage, the national amenity societies and the Prince's Foundation for the Built Environment.
Postgraduate Diploma or MSc Conservation of the Historic Environment
2 years to PGDip or 3 years to MSc
14 hours of study a week for 42 weeks of each year
25 May 2013
1 June 2013
|Total course fees||£8,200||£11,600|
Once you have successfully completed Part 1 you have two options:
- Complete Part 2 with CEM and be awarded the Postgraduate Diploma in Conservation of the Historic Environment. This will entitle you to use the designatory letters PGDipCHE.
- Complete Parts 2 and 3 by transferring to the University of Reading to be awarded the MSc in Conservation of the Historic Environment. You will be entitled to use the designatory letters MSc. If you should decide, after starting Part 2 (on the MSc route), that you do not wish to proceed to Part 3, then you will be awarded a University of Reading Postgraduate Diploma after successful completion of Part 2, and will be able to use the designatory letters PGDipCHE. It should be noted that, while you would be transferring to the University of Reading, you would still be a student of CEM and all the course administration and support would be provided by CEM.
If you wish to proceed to study for the MSc, you must register with the University of Reading at the end of Part 1. This will be arranged through CEM.
The MSc Conservation of the Historic Environment is accredited by RICS. Once you have completed the course you will be eligible to apply for the RICS Assessment of Competence (APC), which leads to Membership. If you have studied a related degree (property or construction) prior to commencing the course, you may be able to apply for the APC before completing the MSc. If this is relevant to you, please ask us for details or make enquiries with RICS. Please note that the Postgraduate Diploma is not accredited by RICS and you cannot register to do your APC concurrently.
The MSc is also fully recognised by the Institute of Historic Building Conservation.
You should have an appropriate professional or other suitable qualification, or be suitably experienced to the satisfaction of the Course Leader. Alternatively, if you have a non-cognate background, you will need to demonstrate intellectual ability and enthusiasm for the subject. The suitability of each candidate's qualifications and experience is at the discretion of the Course Leader. If you are uncertain of your suitability, contact the Course Leader at CEM.
The teaching and exams for the course are held only in the UK, which will impose additional time, travelling and accommodation costs. However, potential international applicants are invited to consult the Course Leader to discuss their application.
Part 1 - Foundation and Fundamentals
Understanding the Historic Environment
research and recording of historic buildings and sites, including history and development of building conservation; theories and principles; charters and guidelines; current attitudes and policies; conservation bodies and agencies; conservation in practice, including historical survey; research techniques; communication methods.
Development of Design
architectural styles and influences; building methods and techniques; estates and landscaping; building elements and materials; interior design.
Historic Buildings Legislation
development of legislation and controls; current legal provisions, controls and policies; public inquiries, expert witness, scheduled monument legislation; health and safety.
Urban Conservation and Economics
financial viability and evaluation; feasibility studies; valuation purpose and methods; funding and grant aid; financial performance and asset management of historic buildings; commercialism.
Part 2 - Conservation in Practice
Module options (choose four)
Practical Conservation Techniques: General Principles
condition surveys and appraisals; defect and structural analysis; agencies of deterioration and decay; interpretation and monitoring; health and safety; cleaning buildings.
Practical Conservation Techniques: Materials and Repairs
brickwork; timber framing; masonry; lime mortars and renders; paint and finishes; roof coverings; ironwork and metals; man-made materials; concrete.
Design in Historic Contexts
alternative uses of historic buildings; change of use - the inflexible building; design in historic contexts; redundant churches; adaptations of historic buildings; problems of the renewal of services in historic buildings; fire and historic buildings.
Procurement and Management of Building Conservation Projects
funding methods; financial management; project documentation; specifications; CDM regulations; quality control and management.
Facilities Management of Historic Buildings
managing historic buildings; commercial influence and pressures; maintenance management systems and organisation; legal liabilities and provisions; financial planning and budgeting; maintenance plans and logbooks.
Heritage Management and Cultural Tourism
historic buildings and sites open to the public; cultural tourism; marketing heritage; financial viability; damage and abuse; access and security provision.
Part 3 - Research
Optional face-to-face sessions may be held in Reading during your course of study. These normally comprise two 2-day sessions, one in June and one in January each year for Parts 1 and 2. There are two separate one-day visits in Part 3.
Overnight accommodation is not included as part of these optional sessions. During the year we also arrange a programme of visits to buildings and places of interest in the UK. These visits are also optional but students find them very useful as they reinforce key aspects of the course.
Other media formats may also be offered as an addition/alternative to face-to-face sessions.
Assessment consists of assignments and an examination at Part 1; assignments, an examination and a project at Part 2; and assignments and a dissertation at Part 3 (MSc only).
You will complete and submit assignments for assessment according to the timetable of the course as follows:
- Five in Part 1
- Four (selected from six options) plus a project in Part 2
- Two plus a dissertation in Part 3 for MSc
Exams are normally held in March and comprise:
- One examination day ending with a 3-hour written paper in Part 1, based on a live project or site visit
- One examination day ending with a 3½-hour written paper in Part 2, based on a live project or site visit
Part 3 of the MSc programme includes a dissertation of 12,000-15,000 words. This will take the form of an in-depth investigation to test a hypothesis within a contextual framework, and will focus on a practical aspect of a course-related subject.