Postgraduate Studies on Historic Building Conservation

12 april 2012

Initiated and co-organised by the Transylvania Trust the Postgraduate Course in Historic Building Conservation was launched in October 1998, within the Faculty of History and Philosophy of the Babes-Bolyai University, Cluj, on the basis of the Decree no. 4223/1998 of the Ministry for Education.

The curriculum approved by the Ministry for Education has been developed by staff members of the Trust, taking into consideration recommendations of specialists from the country and from abroad, as well as those of the ICOMOS International Training Committee (Guidelines on Education and Training in the Conservation of Monuments, Ensembles and Sites – Fifth Revised Draft, May 11, 1992.)   

The main objective of the course is the training of specialists with university degrees in historic building conservation, considering the richness and present state of the Transylvanian built heritage. The training is located in the Built Heritage Research and Training Centre in the Breaza street, Cluj-Napoca, established with the support of the Apáczai Foundation. The building offers classrooms, catering facilities and accommodation for students.   

The course’s duration is two years, meaning four semesters. The training consists of 600 classes (480 theoretical and 120 practical lessons).   

The courses are organised in Romanian and Hungarian language for architects, structural engineers, art historians, archaeologists and other experts with a university degree. The curriculum of the course contains joint subjects on general issues and particular courses corresponding to the professional training background of the students.   

In order to assimilate specialist terms in Romanian and English, 5% of the courses for the Romanian and Hungarian group are held in English, while 15% of the Hungarian group’s courses are lectured in Romanian.    
The practical classes consist of visiting local restoration sites and participating in field-trips in Romania and abroad.    
The course had 62 registered students between 1998 and 2000 (28 on the architecture section, 34 on the structural engineering section), 63 students between 2000 and 2002 (34 on the architecture section, 29 on the structural engineering section), 31 students between 2004 and 2006 (23 on the architecture section, 8 on the structural engineering section), 54 students between 2006-2008 (34 on the architecture section, 20 on the structural engineering section ), 52 students between 2008-2010 (34 on the architecture section, 18 on the structural engineering section) respectively 70 students between 2010-2012 (49 on the architecture section, 21 on the structural engineering section). Art historians, Catholic and Calvinist priests, and geologists also participated in the course, as well as the architects and structural engineers. 
Graduating students are awarded with a certificate on historic building conservation, after sustaining their thesis. This certificate is recognised by the Ministry of Culture under Law no. 422/2001. Since the programme’s launch a total of 127 students have obtained their degree in this field.

The programme can function as a result of sponsorship from the Romanian and Hungarian Governments and civil organisations, but a smaller part of the expenses are covered by tuition fees paid by the students. 
Since 2004, thanks to a donation of the Sóvágó family, a scholarship named after the architect János Sóvágó originating from Cluj makes possible the training in each year of a student who is willing to work in the field of research of endangered heritage or heritage containing wall paintings and painted panel ceilings.

Project Director: Berki Tímea

Built heritage

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