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Undergraduate Certificate in the History of Art

‘The Conted Certificate in Art History was my re-introduction to academia following a substantial gap. Having enjoyed a career in advertising, latterly as CEO then Chairman of one of the UK’s largest advertising agencies, I had a future planned as a non-executive director (NED) on a number of Boards.  As my time was no longer structured, I was able to take on a number of new projects, which included looking again at studying. I chose the Conted Certificate in the History of Art as the course gave me a broad introduction to the subject.  I was also keen to take on a long-term commitment and the structure of the Certificate leading to the Diploma gave me the continuous study opportunity I was looking for. I am currently in my second and final year of the Diploma and plan to continue my academic journey with an MSt in a related field.

With the exception of the obvious delight in gaining a greater understanding of the history of art, the enthusiasm of the tutors and the satisfaction of achieving something new, there are two benefits I had not anticipated. The first is the pleasure in meeting a group of like-minded individuals, both tutors and fellow students, each with the shared enjoyment of art history. The second is that it has given me an interest to enjoy beyond the confines of the lecture theatre. Visits to exhibitions have become more vital.

Regarding the specifics, the course is as challenging as an individual would like to make it. There will always be more to learn, another book to read or an exhibition to visit. However, I have felt no pressure from the tutors to perform, only experienced their support to progress at my own pace. Much to my initial surprise, the essays have become a way to immerse myself into a subject, rather than a task to endure. I have become an advocate of artists I had previously misunderstood, I have found myself momentarily obsessed with a particular work of art and I have developed the beginnings of what I hope will become a life-long interest in the history of art and architecture. In addition, these qualifications may well lead me in a new direction with a NED role, which utilizes both my background and my newly acquired art historical knowledge.

I would not hesitate to suggest the course to anyone looking to gain a broad insight into a brilliant and fascinating subject. The course covers an introduction into the techniques of art and looks at an art, sculpture and architecture across an extremely expansive period from Greek and Roman sculpture, Medieval art and to the art and architecture of the 20th Century.  The tutors will support your learning; they will make the experience fun as well as fulfilling and you will leave the course richer for the experience. 

Please take this as an unequivocally positive recommendation!’