The horology courses at West Dean College of Arts and Conservation give you the opportunity to develop the skills and competences to work towards becoming a professional horologist or horological conservator, or to undertake further professional development in horology.
Perhaps you have previously studied engineering, maths or chemistry or are looking for a career change and would like to pursue a subject with a more specific application. Our courses offer the chance to gain practical experience of clock making, conserving and repair.
Take a Virtual Tour of the clocks facilities and college.
Depending on the level you wish to study, there are a range of courses to choose from.
Levels 4 & 5: Foundation Degree (FdA) specialising in Horology
The foundation degree in horology starts with the basics of clockmaking skills and over the course of two years prepares you, no matter what your starting ability, to begin a horological career or to continue on to further study on our professional development or graduate programmes.
Level 6: Graduate Diploma in Conservation Studies
The Graduate Diploma introduces horologists to complex technical repairs and decision-making. Through a grounding in contemporary methodology and conservation science, this course prepares students for a career within the heritage sector. Graduates of the programme usually transition to the MA Conservation Studies.
Level 7: MA Conservation Studies
The global industry standard for conservation which continues to introduce more challenging practical proficiencies and a supplementary in-depth view of materials science relevant to the conservation of historic objects.
Objects from historical and private collections are provided for you to work on, to acquire and practise both established and developing techniques. Recent examples include a wide range of projects from longcase clocks to clocks with balance wheel escapements such as carriage clocks and chronometers as well as antique watch repair. In keeping with professional standards, treatments are discussed and agreed with stakeholders, with reference to the current and historical context of the item, its technical makeup, and a scientific understanding of its materials.
Professional Development Diploma
For those looking to improve their new-making skills, or concentrate on more esoteric and specialised repairs and restoration, the PDD in horology is the ideal pathway. This course is not accredited by the University of Sussex, so makes few academic demands of the student. Instead, the format allows for a great deal of customisation, giving early- or late-career horologists the opportunity to develop the skills they are most interested in. Students are supported by the College’s well-equipped workshop and the 25+ years of horological experience brought by the team of tutors.