Antiques (Distance Learning) MA

Antiques (Distance Learning) MA

School of Art, Design and Fashion


Post- graduate




Online Only

Contact UCLan

Course Enquiries
University of Central Lancashire
Preston, PR1 2HE, UK.

Tel: +44 (0)1772 892400

  • Duration:

    Two years

  • Level:


  • Mode:


  • Delivery:

    Distance without attendance, Part-time

  • Campus:

    Online Only

  • Start Date:


  • Award Type:


Why study this programme?

Since its inception in 2003, our distance learning MA Antiques course has been inspiring researchers and practitioners; individuals who want to develop a specialised interest in antiques without the necessity of on-campus attendance, and who wish to do so on a part-time basis.

Whether it’s a leisure activity, you wish to be an antique dealer or you want recognition of your professional status in antiques, our MA Antiques course appeals to a wide range of students. This postgraduate course has been specifically designed to accommodate the needs of part-time provision via distance learning. Students tend to be adults in employment who want to take the course on a part-time basis to fit around their other working commitments.


Entry Requirements

Applicants must demonstrate achievement of any one of the following:

  • Receipt of a 2.2 degree, or higher from a British university
  • A high level of achievement in undergraduate studies at a university elsewhere (e.g. for North American students a minimum overall GPA of 3.3 on a 4.0 scale)
  • Professional experience in the field or a related field in their home country

Part of the application procedures for entry to the course is to establish -through a written personal statement -why candidates want to do the course, and how this relates to their personal and career development plans.
International Students are required to show competence in written and spoken English in addition to meeting the course entry requirements: International English Language Testing Service (IELTS) - minimum 7.5

Programme at a Glance

With the first module you look at how to decipher antiques, interrogating an antique, value and valuing an antique, and attributing an antique. You also explore what design and styles can show us about antiques.

The second module is focused on collecting and collections of antiques rather than individual antique items. It reflects upon the history of collections, objective and subjective dimensions of a collection; the intent being to reveal the underlying principles that inform our thinking about collecting and collections. The module ends by addressing a collection of items that you have collected via the web.

The final group of modules develops your own specialized field and interest. This is the Dissertation Project in Antiques. Here you will have the opportunity to undertake a sustained investigation into a clearly identified area of interest relevant to antiques.

Year 1

  • Semester 1: AQ4021 Investigating Antiques (30 Credit)
  • Semester 2: AQ4022 Collection Practice (30 Credit)

Year 2

  • Semester 1: DD4921 Dissertation Project Research 1 and 2 (30 Credit)
  • Semester 2: DD4922 Dissertation Project Research 3 and Evaluation (30 Credit)

Year 3

  • Semester 1: DD4991 Dissertation Project (60 Credit)

Further Information

Weekly lessons are delivered electronically and the contents are discussed during video-based tutorials. Set exercises test the students understanding of each topic before moving on to the next.

Here are some of the topics covered during the first year of the course:


  • Aesthetic Movement
  • Art Deco
  • Art Nouveau
  • Arts and Craft Movement
  • Attribution
  • Bauhaus
  • Bottle Collecting
  • Calvinistic Design
  • Cabinets of Curiosity
  • Cataloguing
  • Ceramics
  • Cabinet and Chair Making
  • Chinoiserie
  • Clarice Cliff
  • Classical Style
  • Collecting and Collections
  • Dating and Antique
  • Design and Designers
  • Egyptian Style
  • English Decorative Arts
  • Empire Style

  • Festival of Britain
  • Fakes and Forgeries
  • Fordism
  • Furniture
  • George Hepplewhite
  • Glass and Glassmaking
  • Gothic and Gothic Revival Styles
  • Grand Tours
  • Great Exhibition
  • Hallmarks
  • Impressionism
  • Investigating Antiques
  • Investing in Antiques
  • Jasperware
  • Josiah Wedgwood
  • Makers’ Marks
  • Medievalism
  • Modernism
  • Museums
  • Neo-Classical Style
  • Ornamentalism

  • Palladianism
  • Patterns and Pattern Numbers
  • Pop Art
  • Pottery Marks
  • Provenance
  • Regency Style
  • Registration Marks
  • Robert Adam
  • Robert and Richard Gillow
  • Silver and Silverware
  • Tableware
  • Taste and Fashion
  • Thomas Chippendale
  • Thomas Sheraton
  • Utility Style
  • Valuing an Antique
  • Vernacular Furniture
  • Victorian Dining
  • Victoriana
  • William Morris
  • Willow Patter
  • WMF


Considering the huge interest in the area of antiques, the decorative arts and design there are surprisingly few courses that allow the student to continue onto MA level. As a mature student the well supported distance learning format is ideal, as is the chance to really get to know a fascinating subject. Of course it's a challenge, but one that leaves you with new skills and an appreciation of the ingenuity of the craftsperson and the manufacturer.


How to Apply

Our Postgraduate section has more information around applying including visiting UCLan and the support available.

If you want to continue and apply now, you can apply for many of the postgraduate UCLan courses using our Online Application System.

For other postgraduate courses you can apply directly to UCLan by downloading a Postgraduate Application Form (.pdf 190KB) please also see our Postgraduate Application Guidance Notes (.pdf 158KB).


For detailed information about studying this course at UCLan, please see the course handbook for your year of entry:

For information on possible changes to course information, see our Important Information.


Apply now or see further information about postgraduate study and research. International students should visit our international pages.

Contact Us

Tel: +44 (0)1772 892400


Fees 2020/21

Full-time: N/A
Part-time: £1,125 per 20 credits (DL) (All Domiciles)

Further information:

For 2019/20 fees please refer to our fees page.

UK Government Postgraduate Loans Scheme

If you're thinking of studying a master's or doctoral degree you could be eligible for a loan from the Government to help you study.

For additional help with financing your studies, UCLan offers a range of Postgraduate scholarships, studentships, bursaries and the Alumni loyalty discount.

View further information

Industry Links

Learning Environment and Assessment

The MA Antiques has been specifically designed to accommodate the needs of part-time provision via distance learning. Students tend to be adults in employment who want to take the course on a part-time basis to fit around their other working commitments. We accommodate such needs by offering a clear structure of progression, balanced by flexible personal tutorials: for which you can expect to have weekly one-to-one contact with academic staff via web based visual conferencing. It is this bespoke interaction with academic staff that our students tell us they find both supportive and inspirational. Our post graduate distance learning students come from a wide diversity of nationalities and locations: America, Canada, England, Germany, Greece, Scotland, and South Africa, to name a few.

Assessment is by 100 per cent coursework in the form of concise project reports or academic papers. For each of the 30 credit modules you undertake, you will have both a mid-module assignment and an end of module assignment to complete. Through weekly tutorials you will receive on-going formative feedback and guidance, but the final module mark and summative feedback is based on the end of module assignment only.


The course was both stimulating and challenging. Thoroughly recommend the course for anyone interested in Antiques. My tutor’s questions and suggestions were though provoking and provided an additional dimension to the investigations.

Course Outline

MA Antiques offers:

  1. A postgraduate qualification in antiques with a proven success rate
  2. Marketing advantages for your business, and/or your own career development
  3. The opportunity, after the first year, to specialise in a field of your choice
  4. Support for students who, after a long period away from formal education, may find postgraduate study daunting at first
  5. Encouragement for individuals who may not have formal entry qualifications - experience counts
  6. Assessment by 100% coursework in the form of concise project reports or academic papers. So, no examinations, summer school or on campus requirements


The course structure offers specific career progression through enabling individuals to apply themselves to one of three routes: academic publication, research funding, or exhibition/research project management. Previous topics from our graduates have included: 

  • The Hallmark System for English Silver: An Instrument of Enforcement or a Method to Identify Period Silver?
  • A Web site Exhibition of Chinese Jade from the GvS Collection
  • Regency Metamorphic Library Chairs (1790 -1840)
  • Imitation or Innovation in Bretby Art Pottery
  • Modern Art for the Table -The 1934 Harrods Exhibition
  • Panelled Furniture: A Survey of 17th and 18th Century
  • The contribution of Edmund Evans, Walter Crane, Randolph Caldecott and Kate Greenaway to the design of Victorian books for children