MA Conservation at Camberwell College of Arts is a two year course with over 40 years experience in teaching specialist skills and knowledge, and prepares our students for work in specific fields of the conservation world. The course offers two pathways that our students choose to specialise in; Art on Paper and Books and Archival Materials.
Content and structure
Content: what students can expect
- A course that consists of practical studio work where students are introduced to conservation ideas and techniques through taught classes
- To learn about the science of materials and how they react under different conditions, providing students with an understanding of conservation treatments and a background to preservation management
- To learn about visual examination and condition documentation, mechanical surface cleaning, humidification and washing, de-acidification and resizing
- Our Art on Paper pathway to include specialist classes on fixatives and consolidants, pressure sensitive tape removal, sensitive media, parchment, iron gall inks, and an introduction to photographic conservation
- Our Books and Archival Materials pathway to cover the broad international and historical spectrum of bookbinding and book structures with an emphasis put on acquiring an understanding of bookbinding history
- During the second year both pathways focus on detailed conservation techniques, and students finish the course by working on a project with one of the many cultural institutions within London
The first part of the course is a shared introductory unit, which brings together the students from across the two pathways. Each student will then focus on one of the individual pathways.
Art on Paper
This pathway focuses on conservation and preservation management of images executed on paper covering a wide range of materials including prints, drawings and watercolours with an emphasis on both conservation practice and theory.
Books and Archival Materials
This pathway focuses on learning structures of different historical styles of books, covering the broad international and historical spectrum of bookbinding and book structures.
Work Experience and Opportunities
Our MA Conservation students benefit from the College s strong connections to London s heritage community, which includes The British Library, Kew Gardens, London Museum, London Metropolitan Archives, The National Maritime Museum, Tate, the V A Museum, The Wellcome Trust and many more.
Jocelyn Cuming – Course Leader
Jocelyn Cuming has extensive experience as a book and preventive conservator. Prior to working at Camberwell, Cuming worked in New Zealand where she set up the National Preservation Office, and as a private book conservator in Rome. More recently, Cuming’s worked for the Islamic Museum of Art in Qatar.
- Tristram Bainbridge
- Alan Buchanan
- Christopher Clarkson
- Vincent Daniels
- Eleni Katsiani
- Joanna Kosek
- Professor Nicholas Pickwoad – Head of Ligatus
- Sonja Schwoll
- Piers Townsend
- Abigail Uhteg
Our MA Conservation graduates progress into a range of career paths within the heritage industry including museum education, curating, exhibition design, tourism, museum studies as well as taking on roles as Conservation professionals.
- Rosie-Faye Fletcher – Paper conservator at the Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London
- Carol Peacock – Conservator of Chinese paintings at the British Museum, London
- BA (Hons) degree (2:1 or above) or equivalent academic qualification
- Professional qualifications recognised as equivalent to a BA (Hons) degree
- Professional experience or experiential learning, the outcome of which can be demonstrated to be equivalent to the qualifications required
- A combination of qualifications and experiential learning, which can be demonstrated to be equivalent to the qualifications required
- Applicants should ideally have experience of working or volunteering in a conservation setting
- Personal statement
- A reference
- A transcript (translated into English if you are an international student)
If English isn t your first language
All classes are taught in English. If English isn’t your first language you must provide evidence at enrolment of the following:
- IELTS level 6.5 or above, with at least 5.5 in reading, writing, listening and speaking (please check our English Language requirements )
This should be no more than 500 words, outlining your previous experience and reasons for wanting to study MA Conservation.
- One reference is required
- Your referee should be able to comment on your ability to succeed on the course
- Applicants must upload their reference, personal statement and transcript using UAL s online portfolio tool
If you are invited for interview you should bring your portfolio.
Portfolios should demonstrate the following:
- Intricate handcraft skills or work related to conservation
- Evidence of good manual dexterity and a high level of aesthetic understanding of the media you are presenting
- An idea of the above skills. This can include drawing, painting, photography, ceramics, or other craft / fine art skills
At interview and portfolio review
- A strong interest in conservation and preferably some conservation related experience
- A good level of manual dexterity as could be demonstrated by art and craft skills or industry experience
- An ability to self-direct and evaluate your own work
- An ability to communicate and discuss ideas verbally and in writing
- An ability to gather, research and use information to support your studies
- A high level of ambition and motivation to study on the course
Successful applicants will be invited to attend an interview and should bring their portfolio.
Use UAL s scholarship search to find out what funding may be available to you.
Postgraduate loans of up to 10,000 are now available for eligible UK and EU students. A full list of eligibility criteria and information on applying can be found on the postgraduate loans webpage .
How to apply
Home / EU deadline is Monday 31 July 2017.
There is no deadline for international applications, but students are advised to apply as early as possible.
You can apply for this course using our online application form.
Required information for all postgraduate course applications
You will need to enter the following information in the online application form:
- Personal details
- Current and/or previous education and qualification details
- Employment history
Extra information required for applications to this course
Once you have submitted the form, you will receive a confirmation email.
You will be emailed a link to our online application tool, where you should submit the extra information we require for the selection process:
- Personal statement
- Transcript (translated into English if you are an international students)
The course leader will review your work, may invite you to interview, and will then make a decision on your application.
We will send you emails throughout the application process that will contain important information about your application. Please check your inbox.
We will contact you separately to ask for copies of certain documents. For example, your English language certificate and copies of any previous UK study visas.
Enquire about this course
If you haven’t found the information you’re looking for or want to ask us a question about this course, please fill out our enquiry form.