This unique MA in French and British Decorative Arts and Interiors is taught by the University of Buckingham in collaboration with the Wallace Collection, home to one of the finest collections of French eighteenth-century fine and decorative arts in the world. Much of the teaching takes place in the Wallace Collection galleries, drawing upon the unrivalled resources of the Collection and the expertise of the museums curatorial staff. Outside experts from the Victoria and Albert Museum, the National Trust and other institutions also participate in the teaching. With its focus on first-hand study of the decorative arts within the historic interior, the programme provides a thorough practical and academic training, which has enabled students to pursue careers in museums, interior design, antique dealing, auctioneering and the National Trust (see What our students and alumni say). The MA is generously supported by the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation.
The MA focuses upon the development of interiors and decorative arts in England and France in the long eighteenth century (c.1660-1830) and their subsequent rediscovery and reinterpretation in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. A key element of the course is the emphasis on the first-hand study of furniture, silver and ceramics, where possible in the context of historic interiors. There are frequent trips to collections in and around London, and a study week at Buckingham exploring local country houses such as Woburn Abbey, Waddesdon Manor, Boughton and Blenheim Palace, with their important decorative arts collections. In the second term there is a study week in Paris, where students have an opportunity to explore some of the private apartments at Versailles not normally accessible to the public, as well as a number of very important eighteenth-century private houses in Paris, open by special permission.
The MA is designed to appeal principally to those wishing to make careers in The National Trust, English Heritage, antique-dealing and auctioneering, museums, interior design or university teaching and research. Those with a strong personal interest in the subject are also welcome.
The University would like to acknowledge the financial support of the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation for this MA programme.
The MA is taught by staff from the University of Buckingham, the Wallace Collection, and outside lecturers.
The course starts each September and finishes the following September. During the first term students study the development of the decorative arts and the interior in France and England between c.1660 and the end of the eighteenth century. In the second term students examine revivalism and the practical and historical problems of reinterpreting eighteenth-century interiors and objects. This is combined with a professional practice project designed to equip students with skills and experience applicable to careers in museums and built heritage. Teaching takes place two days a week (excluding class trips) over two terms, or one day a week for part-time students. During the third term, students research a dissertation under supervision, which is written up over the summer for submission at the end of September. Assessment is by means of coursework and the dissertation.
Subject to the agreement of the Programme Director, there are some options for part-time study, one day a week over two years, or by deferral of the dissertation. These are normally only for those working in the field.
Universities in the United Kingdom use a centralized system of undergraduate application: University and College Admissions Service (UCAS). It is used by both domestic and international students. Students have to register on the UCAS website before applying to the university. They will find all the necessary information about the application process on this website. Some graduate courses also require registration on this website, but in most cases students have to apply directly to the university. Some universities also accept undergraduate application through Common App (the information about it could be found on universities' websites).
Both undergraduate and graduate students may receive three types of responses from the university. The first one, “unconditional offer” means that you already reached all requirements and may be admitted to the university. The second one, “conditional offer” makes your admission possible if you fulfill some criteria – for example, have good grades on final exams. The third one, “unsuccessful application” means that you, unfortunately, could not be admitted to the university of you choice.
All universities require personal statement, which should include the reasons to study in the UK and the information about personal and professional goals of the student and a transcript, which includes grades received in high school or in the previous university.
Bursaries and scholarships can be a great way of financing your studies, and enabling you to achieve your potential. If you win a scholarship, you receive a discount on your fees and, most important, a scholarship on your CV will make you stand out to future employers.
How many bursaries and scholarships are available?
A number of scholarships and bursaries are awarded annually by the University which vary from partial fee to full-fee awards. These are thanks to the donations received from supporters of the University, including the Audrey Osborn Trust, The Headley Trust, Garfield Weston Foundation, Brunner Family Trust, RM & D Gregory, Eranda Foundation and John Desborough Memorial Bequest.
Applications are now closed for July and September 2012 applicants. We will be considering January and April 2013 applicants from Monday 17 September, the deadline for submission will be Friday 2 November.
The following Scholarships have specific entry criteria and / or deadlines:
* Sir Ray Tindle Scholarships
* The Paul E H Davis Awards Deadline for applications: 31 October 2012 for Exhibitions & flexible for Research Scholarship.
Entry requirements & procedure
It is the Universitys policy to ensure that bursaries and scholarships are awarded to those who might not otherwise have the opportunity to benefit from a University education. In the case of some scholarships, at the request of the donor, academic merit will also be taken into consideration.
All awards are subject to your meeting the Universitys academic entry requirements and abiding by the rules and regulations. To be eligible to apply for a scholarship you will need to have been offered a place to study at Buckingham. In the case of UCAS applications, if you are made an award you will need to select Buckingham as your firm acceptance choice.
Please note: these awards are made to new students only, current students are not eligible to apply.