The University of Buckingham is introducing as part of its London Programme a new research MA in Garden History which offers a unique opportunity to study the subject.
Interest in British gardens and their history has never been greater than now. Historic gardens and designed landscapes are a major part of the nations heritage, appreciated by more visitors than ever before. Culturally as well as economically they are important national assets that need to be understood for what they are: works of art that document changing ideas and fashions, and which express the social, intellectual and aesthetic values of those who created them, and for whom they were created. They are also constantly changing, something that makes them especially rewarding to study as over the course of time they may have been refashioned and reinterpreted by successive generations, and are constantly evolving. Garden history is not only about the past. British designers lead the world in contemporary landscaping and gardening, while magazines and television programmes continuously remind us of how important gardens are to us, and of the part they a play in our modern society. Historians of gardens and landscape architecture draw on different kinds of evidence visual, literary and intellectual, as well as on what there is on the ground to explore the ideas, attitudes and approaches which any design contains within it.
This is a unique and innovative MA by Research which combines original research with training in the methods, materials and approaches garden history involves. The Course Director is Professor Timothy Mowl FSA, who is internationally renowned as a leading scholar and writer on the history of gardens, designed landscapes and architecture. He is supported by Dr Katie Campbell, Michael Liversidge FSA and Marion Mako who have each published original research in the subject, as well as by a panel of tutors and, for special research seminars, invited guest lecturers who represent at its best the vitality and vigour of current scholarship and thinking in garden history and related areas.
Independent research for a dissertation which a student prepares and writes in a close working relationship with a supervisor is at the heart of the Buckingham MA. The degree is awarded on the basis of the dissertation, which should be not less than 20,000 words. The supervisor provides advice in identifying and defining a research topic, locating sources and developing approaches to the chosen topic. Supervisors and students meet regularly, and the supervisor is the students primary contact for academic advice and support
Lectures and Seminars
The MA in Garden History provides a thorough preparation in research techniques and to the background to the history of British gardens and designed landscapes from the sixteenth century to the modern period. In the Autumn Term (October to December) there are eight intensive one-day sessions held on Tuesdays in which research training and historical background seminars are led by specialist tutors covering key aspects of the subject. These seminars take place from 11.00 to 16.00 in London, with a two-week break in the schedule which coincides with schools half-term to accommodate the needs of students who may have family commitments. There is also a residential weekend for visiting major masterpieces of landscape design to introduce students to practices involved in reading physical evidence.
In the Winter and Spring Terms, from January to May, there will be a series of evening guest Research Seminars, also held on Tuesdays between 18.30 and 19.45, at which an internationally eminent authority will speak, followed by dinner (20.00 to 22.00) over which discussion can continue more informally. The dates are from January to May, with breaks at half-terms and public holidays. Guest speakers will be internationally renowned leading garden historians, practitioners and writers who are among the most eminent authorities in the field: in 2012-13 they will include:
* Sir Roy Strong FSA, FRSL (President, The Garden History Society; author of The Renaissance Garden in England, The Artist and the Garden, Visions of England, creator of The Laskett garden in Herefordshire)
* Anna Pavord (Gardening Correspondent of The Independent, National Trust Gardens Panel and English Heritage Parks and Gardens Panel, Veitch Memorial Gold Medal of the Royal Horticultural Society, author of numerous books on gardens and garden history including The Tulip, The Curious Gardener, Hidcote)
* Professor Stephen Bann CBE, FBA, FSA (Emeritus Professor of History of Art, University of Bristol, Past President Comité International de lHistoire de lArt, Trustee Little Sparta Trust, Beatrix Farrand Distinguished Fellow at Dumbarton Oaks, Washington, noted authority on land art and garden and landscape theory)
* Robert Adam DIPL ARCH (PCL), RIBA, FRSA (of Robert Adam Architects, a leading practice in current urban and country house design drawing on and responding to historical precedents)
* Professor Mark Horton FSA (archaeologist and a regular contributor to Coast, Time Team and numerous television and radio programmes, specialist in the archaeology of landscape and medieval gardens)
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.