West Dean College

Degree level: Undergraduate
Awarded by: University of Sussex

Conservation Studies, specialising in Ceramics

Course options

Make sure you check on the university, college or conservatoire website for any updates about course changes as a result of COVID-19.

Course summary

Study at a specialist college with the assurance of a university qualification. Develop your passions and reach your potential in a small, welcoming environment within a community of like-minded people. Why choose West Dean? An international reputation for excellence in conservation and arts education 94% of students studying at the College* felt the programme had enhanced their skills and abilities (*2019 student survey) A rich arts environment and a focus on craft skills with vocational application Be inspired by the unique historic character and beautiful South Downs setting Located close to Chichester and the South Coast, with easy access to London The Course The Graduate Diploma is your opportunity to develop the skills and competences to work towards becoming a professional ceramics conservator. You will start with basic treatments while being introduced to a diverse range of objects, then undertake progressively more complex conservation projects, from archaeological finds to decorative arts objects from a range of cultures and stylistic periods. You can expect To acquire and practise both established and developing techniques To study ceramic technology, material culture and materials science To work on artefacts from historical and private collections Learning environment Low student: tutor ratio Interdisciplinary environment Well-equipped workshop Individual workspace for each student Workshop access 8.30am-9pm, 7 days a week Icon Professional Standards in Conservation Exceptional facilities You will work in our well-equipped workshop with specialist facilities for cleaning, retouching and finishing. Facilities include: Pottery studio for making, firing and finishing new work Areas for photography and microscopy Wet room for cleaning processes New analytical laboratory IT suite with specialist databases On-site Art and Conservation Library with thousands of specialist books and journals Teaching On the Graduate Diploma you typically have around 24 contact hours per week. Independent learning When not attending lectures, seminars and workshop or other timetabled sessions you will be expected to continue learning independently through self-study for approximately 13-14 hours per week. Typically, this will involve: Reading journal articles and books Working on individual and group projects Undertaking research in the library Preparing coursework assignments and presentations Overall workload Graduate Diploma: 60% of your time is spent in scheduled teaching and learning activity Scheduled teaching and learning: 720 hours Independent learning: 480 hours


Unit G1A Introducing Professional Practice, Unit G1B Introducing Conservation Science, Unit G1C Contextual and Professional Studies 1, Unit G2A Developing Professional Practice, Unit G2B Conservation Science: Development and Applications, Unit G2C Contextual and Professional Studies 2, Unit G3A Research Through Practice. Modules correct at October 2019, they may be subject to change.

How to apply

Application codes

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West Dean College
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Points of entry

The following entry points are available for this course:

  • Year 1

Entry requirements

Qualification requirements

The Graduate Diploma is accessible to students from both humanities and science backgrounds. You need to have a degree or qualification at equivalent level to a second year of undergraduate study, e.g. HND, FdA, DipHE. Alternatively, accreditation of prior experiential learning (APEL) will be considered for those who have been out of formal education for some years and are over 21, who do not meet the general (minimum) entrance requirements, but who can demonstrate their capacity for degree-level work in other ways.

Please click the following link to find out more about qualification requirements for this course


Additional entry requirements



Applicants should provide a digital portfolio.


Applicants are to participate in a practical test day.

English language requirements

International students will require English language CEFR (Common European Framework of Reference for Languages) level B2 or IELTS 6.5 or above.

Find out more about the English language requirements at West Dean College.


Unistats information

Operated by the Office for Students

There is no data available for this course. For further information visit the Discover Uni website.

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

Republic of Ireland £14640 Whole course
EU £14640 Whole course
International £14640 Whole course
England £14640 Whole course
Northern Ireland £14640 Whole course
Scotland £14640 Whole course
Wales £14640 Whole course
Channel Islands £14640 Whole course

Additional fee information

Course fees are the same for UK and international students. Included is mandatory study trip costs of £400, which typically includes tailored visits to collections/exhibitions of specific interest to the programme of study. Lunch, accommodation and other living expenses are additional. To find out more visit: https://www.westdean.ac.uk/degrees-and-diplomas/admissions#living-costs

Sponsorship information

Funding opportunities are available to students applying to study at West Dean and we encourage students to explore funding options. In 2019 up to 60% of students received bursary/scholarship support. For more information visit: https://www.westdean.ac.uk/degrees-and-diplomas/funding

Conservation Studies, specialising in Ceramics at West Dean College - UCAS