Historic Preservation, MS
Pratt’s Historic Preservation program prepares students for leadership in a rapidly changing preservation field.
The 47-credit Master of Science in Historic Preservation, offered at Pratt’s School of Architecture on the Brooklyn campus, is designed to meet today’s increasing demand for preservation professionals. Students learn the interdisciplinary skills needed to assess contemporary preservation issues and contribute greatly to an ever-expanding field.
The Historic Preservation program aims to train preservationists who are highly knowledgeable in the field, as well as critical enough to push the boundaries of the discipline. Rather than focusing on the preservation of the past, the program focuses on diverse strategies to manage change in the present. Preservation is a truly forward-looking profession, fueled by the opportunity and the need to find creative solutions that protect cultural resources by ensuring their use and continuity through time.
Pratt Institute’s MS degree in Historic Preservation offers a unique approach to preservation education, striving to go beyond the physical aspects of preservation in order to understand what role our discipline plays within a larger context of sustainable practices.
After an intense year of core courses that provide a solid foundation in the critical areas of historic preservation practice, students are encouraged to develop their particular interests. They spend their second year on a thesis project and elective courses within their chosen area of focus, specializing in a particular aspect of urban preservation and built environment management. We seek to help students develop their own passions and expertise while they are in school, so that they graduate with a body of knowledge that can inform and contribute to the profession. Upon the successful completion of their theses, students become qualified historic preservation practitioners with a focus that at once broadens their knowledge base and deepens their expertise—thus enhancing their skills and the range of work that they are equipped to handle as they enter this transdisciplinary field.
In addition, students have the option to explore international studios and practice on offer from other programs. An internship in the field of historic preservation rounds out the program and ensures that students leave Pratt with relevant real-world work experience, as well as a network of professionals in preservation.
The academic areas of focus not only offer students the possibility of honing their knowledge and skills to prepare for a preservation career, but also enrich historic preservation as a discipline by broadening its reach and allowing for continuity and innovation.
There are three areas of focus within the program: Design, Conservation, and Sustainability; Historic Resource Management; and Community Preservation and Planning. We believe that these three areas cover many crucial aspects of preservation in order to better protect our historic resources while fostering innovation in the field.
Design, Conservation, and Sustainability addresses the issues that arise during the process of designing a new structure in a historic context and offers skills and training in the conservation of historic structures. In addition, the focus area enables students to explore the nexus between historic preservation and environmental sustainability.
Historic Resource Management addresses the issues surrounding the stewardship of historic buildings and sites, providing students with a deeper understanding of the theories and practices of historic building and site conservation, interpretation, and management.
Community Preservation and Planning explores the relationship between urban planning and preservation practice, including the challenges of integrating place-based history into community planning efforts and managing change in historic neighborhoods.
The Historic Preservation program resides within the Graduate Center for Planning and the Environment (GCPE) in the School of Architecture. GCPE’s mission is to create and sustain a learning community of students, faculty, and alumni that is characterized by innovative professional practice and that emphasizes planning and preservation approaches rooted in the principles of sustainability, equity, and public participation.
The program takes a values-based approach to historic preservation. This means that rather than just looking at preservation through a curatorial lens, the program recognizes the need to take a more holistic approach. The values-based approach proposes that cultural issues are critical to the understanding and conservation of the built environment. Moreover, it establishes that social memory is a critical aspect of dealing with historical value, because it can help bridge spaces and times by focusing on the users and not just the objects.
|PR-640||History and Theory of Preservation||3|
|PR-643B||Architecture & Urban History: Europe Middle East, Asia||3|
|PR-661||Preservation Law & Policy||3|
|PR-839||Historic Preservation Studio I: Heritage Documentation||5|
|PR-600||Current Issues in Historic Preservation||1|
|PR-642A||Concepts of Heritage||3|
|PR-643A||Architecture & Urban History: U.S. States||3|
|Select one of the following:||5|
|Historic Preservation Studio II: Preservation, Economic Development|
|Green Infrastructure Design/Build Principles/Best Practices|
|Studio: Sustainable Communities|
|Studio: Land Use & Urban Design|
|Studio: Sustainable Development|