REMH01-Understanding the Historic Environment

Module Provider: Real Estate and Planning
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Autumn term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2021/2

Module Convenor: Mr Henry Russell

Type of module:

Summary module description:

This module introduces students to the basic concepts of conservation philosophy, approaches and practice. It also introduces students to the principal national and international heritage agencies. Students also learn basic skills of researching historic buildings, mainly through the medium of places of worship, which are usually well documented.


The aim of this module is to provide the student with an understanding of the agencies involved in conservation, the role of the professions in conservation, and the issues of conservation philosophy, and to develop the student’s skills in recording buildings.  

Assessable learning outcomes:

Upon completion of this module, students should be able to: 

  • demonstrate a full and practical knowledge of the government agencies and specialist societies involved in conservation; 

  • explain the dynamic nature of the interrelationships of the different professions; 

  • demonstrate an awareness and understanding of the main principles underpinning buil ding conservation philosophy; 

  • produce a complete written record of a building, supported by photographs and drawings. 

Additional outcomes:

  • Enhance oral and communication skills through discussions and presentations in seminar sessions; 

  • Develop academic report writing skills through the module assignment. 

Outline content:

  • Conservation philosophy and approaches 

  • The principal UK and international heritage agencies 

  • The professions engaged in conservation 

  • Understanding historic buildings and sites through physical inspection and archive research  

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

The module is delivered in a block release format that involves a four-day face to face teaching block with pre-course preparation plus online post-teaching support. The module is taught in an interactive format through seminars and workshops. An assessed individual project is the consolidating and integrating vehicle for the taught material. Students are encouraged to share information via Blackboard in the extended online support period which follows the face to face element. An online discussion of the case studies between tutors and students supports the assessment in this module.  

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 12
Seminars 6
External visits 12
Guided independent study:      
    Wider reading (independent) 35
    Wider reading (directed) 35
    Essay preparation 100
Total hours by term 0 0
Total hours for module 200

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written assignment including essay 100

Summative assessment- Examinations:

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:


A major project which assesses all the learning outcomes of this module. Guide length 5,000 words. 

Assignment Submission Deadline: Week 13

Formative assessment methods:

Penalties for late submission:

The below information applies to students on taught programmes except those on Postgraduate Flexible programmes. Penalties for late submission, and the associated procedures, which apply to Postgraduate Flexible programmes are specified in the policy “Penalties for late submission for Postgraduate Flexible programmes”, which can be found here:
The Support Centres will apply the following penalties for work submitted late:

  • where the piece of work is submitted after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for that piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.
The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at:
You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

Assessment requirements for a pass:

50%. As this is a core Module of Special Significance, a mark of 40 must be achieved in order to be awarded the MSc. 

Reassessment arrangements:

Reassessment will be by the same method as for the module’s original assessment requirements, subject to variation by the Examination Board where appropriate. 

Additional Costs (specified where applicable):

Last updated: 8 April 2021


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