Conservation Studies MSc

The MSc in Conservation Studies at UCL Qatar aims to produce well-informed professionals for employment in the conservation of archaeological, historical and contemporary art objects and sites. The programme has a regional focus and includes extended placements in museums and heritage organisations, giving students the necessary theoretical and practical skills to pursue a career in conservation in the Gulf and beyond.

Key Information

Modes and duration

  • Full-time: 2 years

Programme start date

September 2016

Tuition Fees (2016/17)


Application dates

All applicants
Open: 5 October 2015
Close: 1 May 2016
Fees note: Fee available on request from the department.

Entry Requirements

A minimum of an upper second-class Bachelor's degree in a related discipline from a UK university, a GPA of 3.3 out of 4.0 (US system), or another overseas qualification of an equivalent standard. Degree class requirements can be waived for candidates with other exceptional qualifications, such as extensive professional experience in related fields.

English Language Requirements

If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency.

The English language level for this programme is: Good

Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.

International students

Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.

International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below.

Select your country:

Degree Information

The programme aims to educate future professionals in conservation, and takes a practice-orientated holistic approach to cultural heritage preservation. The Conservation Studies MSc offers opportunities to specialise in the conservation of different materials, with special focus on the cultural heritage of the Middle East region. Professional placements are organised to enable students to gain practical work experience in Qatar and the wider region.

This two-year MSc has a total value of 360 credits.

In year one students take seven compulsory modules (165 credits) and one option (15 credits). In year two students take three compulsory modules (75 credits), one option (15 credits) and a dissertation (90 credits).

Year One

  • Compulsory
  • Principles of Conservation
  • Investigating Objects (Technology and Deterioration)
  • Introduction to Conservation Practice
  • Technical Skills for Cultural Heritage
  • Collections Care and Management
  • Preventive Conservation
  • Placement I
  • Optional
  • Materials versus Culture
  • Interdisciplinary Methods for the Study of Cultural Heritage
  • Any 15-credit module from the Museum and Gallery Practice MA and the Archaeology of the Arab and Islamic World MA as agreed with the module co-ordinators.

Year Two

  • Compulsory
  • Applied Conservation Processes (option of different materials)
  • Material Science for Conservation
  • Placement II
  • Optional
  • Materials versus Culture
  • Interdisciplinary Methods for the Study of Cultural Heritage
  • Debates in Contemporary Art Curation
  • Any 15-credit module from the Museum and Gallery Practice MA and the Archaeology of the Arab and Islamic World MA as agreed with the module co-ordinators.
  • Urban Foundations of the Middle East
  • Islamic Papyri (needs Arabic)
  • Islamic Ceramics
  • Archaeology of the Ottoman Empire
  • GIS 1
  • Object-based Learning*
  • Interdisciplinary methods for the Study of Cultural Heritage*
  • (*If not taken in Year One)


All students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of 12,000 words.

Teaching and Learning

The programme is delivered through a combination of lectures, seminars, tutorials, practical demonstrations, supervised practice, workshops, site visits and structured reading. Students undertake two two-month placements, one at the end of each academic year. Assessment is through essays, presentations, project reports, portfolios, placement portfolios based on project work, and the dissertation.

Further information on modules and degree structure available on the department web site Conservation Studies MSc


Departmental funding and scholarship opportunities are available. All successful candidates are eligible.

Scholarships relevant to this department are displayed (where available) below. For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.


Graduates of this programme will gain key skills relevant to heritage sites and museums in the Gulf region and beyond. Training in conservation, collections care and management, together with research methods and advanced study skills, will enable our graduates to operate as heritage professionals or pursue further independent research in this field.


Graduates are expected to be in high demand locally as there is an increasing need for qualified conservators with the rapidly growing museum and heritage sector. We expect graduates to go on to assume leading roles within museums and galleries in Qatar, the region and beyond.

Why study this degree at UCL?

This programme suits students who are eager to gain a broad exposure to the conservation of a wide range of ancient and modern materials, including metals, glass, ceramics, organics, textiles and contemporary art, as well as the conservation of archaeological sites.

Students at UCL Qatar benefit from truly exceptional facilities, including the most advanced new conservation and materials science laboratories in the region.

Qatar’s position at the heart of the Arab and Islamic worlds, places students in close proximity to some of the greatest civilizations of the ancient world and its foremost archaeological sites. The region’s broad range of museums, both established and newly developed, offer unparalleled access to some of the world’s finest collections of art and antiquities.

Student / staff ratios › 24 staff › 80 taught students › 10 research students

Department: UCL Qatar

Degree reviews

Student review

"UCLQ made available for us the best high end equipment, needed for a field of study that is mostly practical. I also believe that the our tutors are a group of the best in the world in their fields. They all came from different backgrounds and different countries to deliver and share with us their knowledge and experience, which is something that makes me feel very lucky. Another different thing would be the fact that we were all students from different nationalities and backgrounds, which I believe I wouldn't have in Jordan. This was one of the important things during my years of study with UCL: I met a lot of people that I would not have the chance to meet if I studied in my country. I learned a lot from them not only about our studies, but about them, about their cultures and about their countries."

Fareed Alshishani

Conservation Studies MSc
Staff review

"As a UCL graduate myself I had experienced first-hand the university’s global outlook and its emphasis on research-led education. It is a fascinating place to return and work. UCL Qatar is a particularly stimulating working environment, as we are currently setting up a new department away from the home campus in a region that is placing culture and education at the forefront of its future development."

Dr Myrto Georgakopoulou

Conservation Studies MSc, Archaeology of the Arab and Islamic World MA.
Lecturer in Archaeological Materials Science

Application and next steps


Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.

Who can apply?

The programme is suitable for students with a first degree in archaeology, anthropology, history, history of art, fine arts, architecture, chemistry, natural sciences, engineering or related disciplines, who wish to gain the skills necessary to develop a career as a conservator with expertise in Arab and Islamic material culture, or pursue doctoral-level research in conservation and its allied fields.

Application deadlines

All applicants
1 May 2016
Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of specific funding application deadlines.

For more information see our Applications page.

Apply now

What are we looking for?

When we assess your application we would like to learn:
  • why you want to study Conservation Studies at graduate level
  • why you want to study Conservation Studies at UCL Qatar
  • what particularly attracts you to this programme
  • how your academic background meets the demands of this challenging programme
  • where you would like to go professionally with your degree

Contact Information


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  • Receive notice of graduate open days, events and more
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