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Professional Doctorate in Heritage (ProfDoc)

The Professional Doctorate in Heritage aims to address the demand for strategic and managerial positions and specific skills in the cultural heritage sector.

The programme offers insight in and strategic thinking for professional roles throughout the sector by covering a wide range of exciting opportunities in museums, local authorities, heritage agencies, organisations and consultancies.

Through a combination of academic studies, practical training and the final doctoral research project, graduates build up a thorough overview as well as specialisation in a wide range of aspects of the cultural heritage sector in both theory and practice. 


You can apply directly to the University using the Apply Now button at the top of the page. 

Request Information
Contact Email: k.zinn@uwtsd.ac.uk
Contact Name: Dr Katharina Zinn

Full-time (three years): £6, 950 per year
Part-time (six years): £3,475 per year
Annual continuation fees apply after three/six years.

Full-time (three years): £15000 per year
Part-time (six years): £7500 per year
Annual continuation fees apply after three/six years.

Why choose this course?

  • Gaining overarching knowledge of the heritage sector connected with a critical theoretical approach
  • Acquiring transferrable and practical skills identified as skills gap in the heritage sector
  • Conduct independent academic research on doctoral level
  • Strong links to heritage organisations
  • Flexibility in delivery: full- and part-time; distance/ blended

What you will learn

Course Overview

This Professional Doctorate consists of a taught (year 1) and a research part (year 2 and 3 with an additional year for writing up if needed). The taught section at MA level (180 credits) prepares the student directly for their intensive, independent study on doctoral level that demonstrates an original and significant contribution to knowledge in the 60,000 word research dissertation supported by a supervisory team.

In addition to providing an overview of the sector and introduce the student to theoretical debates in heritage, the taught part will help the student to develop skills which are valuable to, and identified as, skills gaps within and adjacent to the heritage sector. This is enabled by not only offering more targeted shorter heritage specific skills modules and knowledge, but also transferrable skills built into all modules (analyse complex information critically; present clear and coherent arguments).

The programme is aimed at students who are looking to take up future opportunities, or are already in employment in the heritage sector in diverse roles. We offer flexibility by delivering this programme online (distance students) or blended (a mix of on-campus and online provision), both full- or part-time.

Module Topics

Part I – Level 7

  • Unravelling Heritage: History, Theory, Methods (30 credits; compulsory)
  • Heritage in the Political World: Communities and Comparative Aspects (30 credits; compulsory)
  • Welsh History and Heritage (30 credits; optional)
  • Introduction to Digital Humanities (30 credits; optional)
  • Environmental Philosophy (30 credits; optional)
  • Writing the History of Power: From Democracy to Dictatorship (30 credits; optional)
  • Heritage and the Media / Treftadaeth a’r Cyfryngau (taught through the medium of Welsh and English; 15 credits; optional)
  • Skills in the Museum (15 credits; optional)
  • Writing for Heritage (15 credits; optional).
  • Heritage Education (15 credits; optional)
  • Preparing the Project (15 credits; compulsory)

Part II – Level 8

  • Research Project: Heritage (360 credits; compulsory).

Module assessments are designed with a view to the practical requirements needed in the sector by equally ensuring students acquire an overview of the sector and theories needed to develop future projects and think strategically. In particular, this involves a problem-based approach to assignment tasks where students are asked to transfer and/or apply academic knowledge and skills to problems they will encounter in the sector and also respond very clearly to skills gaps identified.

The assessment strategy consists of formative and summative assessments. Formative assessments aim to use the form of ‘spiral assessment’, encouraging students to revisit and implement standards that have been covered in previous modules. For example, in the skills modules as well optional modules students will revisit and actively apply concepts presented in compulsory modules such as Unravelling Heritage, transforming them into applied skills complementing their knowledge. Writing for Heritage corresponds in many ways to Introduction to Digital Humanities and the other skills modules. The interconnectivity of the modules and their assessments aims to develop self-reflexivity as a professional attitude urgently needed in the heritage sector.

Module assessment is designed to prepare students for Part 2 and the inherent level 8 research thesis based on professional topics. Some modules therefore use a more traditional assessment pattern consisting of essays, critical analysis, reports, discussion papers and presentations. Especially in the shorter skills-based modules, progress will be assessed by using the portfolio format which offers greater flexibility in the assessment of professional skills, both collaborative and personalised, and also allows for incorporation of practice-based heritage professionals. Portfolios may include label writing, catalogue entries, marketing material, reviews, websites, funding applications, posters, creation/maintenance of databases, media production, creation of teaching resources.

Students can only progress into part 2 (research) if they achieve an overall mark of 60 and higher in part 1. Achieving a Pass mark (50-59) on average in the 180 taught credits will lead to an exit award (MA).

Scholarships, Bursaries and Events

Humanities | The Lampeter Difference

Key Information

Entry Criteria

The normal minimum entry requirement for applicants for the degree of Professional Doctorate is an upper second class honours degree or a Master’s degree relevant to the proposed programme awarded by a UK or other recognised University or higher education institution, or by the Council for National Academic Awards (CNAA). Recent and relevant work experience is desirable. Every application will be assessed on its own merits through the submitted paperwork and interview.

English Language Requirements for International Students:

In addition to the Welsh and UK heritage sector, we will also market this programme for international heritage professionals. Such applicants will be required to evidence English language proficiency equivalent to IELTS 6.0 to be admitted to Part 1 (Level 7) of the programme. However, at the start of Part 2 their English language proficiency must be equivalent to 6.5 to fulfil the requirement for research degrees. This means that the programme needs to include language elements that are specifically designed to improve and evidence that a student fulfils the English language requirements for research degrees in all four elements (reading, listening, speaking and writing).

Career Opportunities

The programme will help the student to develop skills which are valuable to, and have been identified as, skills gaps by a wide range of employers within and adjacent to the heritage sector.

This is enabled by not only offering heritage-specific skills modules and knowledge, but also transferrable skills built into all modules such as the ability to analyse complex information critically; the ability to present clear and coherent arguments and the ability to present complex information in a clear manner.

More particularly, the programme will attract students who are looking to take up future employment opportunities, or are already in employment, in the heritage sector in very diverse role profiles. Module assessments are therefore designed with a view to the practical requirements needed.

Digital skills are an integral part of the programme.

Graduates of this programme have a wide range of career opportunities within the heritage sector as well as adjacent specialist firms, including:

  • Heritage organisations including museums, archives, conservation charities
  • Education / outreach
  • Cultural tourism
  • Media and communications, journalism
  • Publishing
  • Academia
  • Heritage specialist in firms working in the heritage sector (architects, manufacturers, events companies, marketers, consultancies, printers, insurers, trainers, recruiters)
Additional Costs

As an institution, we seek to continually enhance the student experience and as a result, additional costs may be incurred by the student on activities that will add value to their education. Where possible these costs will be kept to a minimum with additional activities being optional.

Field trips and placement costs

Field trips may be offered to students, which are optional. Costs for UK trips will be provided at the beginning of the academic year. Students undertaking placements will incur travel, living and possibly accommodation costs.

Research costs

Costs related to the research thesis in Part 2 of the programme are borne by the student. The University operates several scholarships and bursary schemes to help cover research costs.

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Bursary / Scholarship Information

You may be eligible for funding to help support your study. To find out about scholarships, bursaries and other funding opportunities that are available please visit our Bursaries and Scholarships section.

Study Abroad Opportunities

Student mobility during the taught and research sections is possible as part of Taith or Turing schemes. For more information, please contact the programme director: k.zinn@uwtsd.ac.uk