Urban Conservation URBAN5118

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Social and Political Sciences
  • Credits: 10
  • Level: Level 5 (SCQF level 11)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

This course will introduce and evaluate the principles, philosophies and methodology for integrated urban conservation, and evaluate the legislative and policy framework to protect historical buildings and facilitate place-making.


The course will be delivered in 3 hourly blocks in semester 2, once per week, over 5 consecutive weeks with a tutorial in the last week.

Requirements of Entry

Mandatory Entry Requirements:


Excluded Courses






A 2,500 words project report on a specific aspect of conservation, heritage and planning..

Course Aims

The course seeks to explore the conservation of historic building by integrating background knowledge of conservation practice and spatial planning policies with an understanding of architecture, and the financial and institutional frameworks underpinning the heritage value. It aims to:

■ develop understanding of heritage value and the principles and philosophies historically and currently employed to protect and conserve historic buildings;

■ evaluate the complex interaction of factors that impact on heritage value and urban conservation decision;

■ discuss the role of spatial planning in protecting heritage;

■ investigate the different methodologies used in urban conservation; and

■ employ case studies to critically assess the outcomes of urban conservation decisions.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

■ understand the principles and philosophies of conservation, including its role within society, and the use of spatial planning policies employed to protect and conserve historical buildings and facilitate place-making;

■ recognise and critically discuss how the historic environment has evolved, the financial context and the legislative and policy framework within which apply to it, and the complex interaction of these factors;

■ display in-depth knowledge of urban conservation methodologies for characterising an area with reference to its historical development, physical fabric and function as a community;

■ understand the requirements of urban conservation management in general, and the strength of the social and economic components in particular;

■ research, record and analyse various elements of the historic environment;

■ formulate and coherently articulate responses to conservation problems at the individual building, site or wider spatial area level; and

■ organise and present information specific to Urban Conservation using a variety of media.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.


Minimum requirement for award of credit for students on MSc City Planning and MSc Real Estate is D3 or above.


University standard regulations apply for students on all other qualifications.