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Core Courses

AMST 645  Historic Preservation

Course Description: Historic and cultural resources are now covered by a raft of federal and local historic preservation laws. The intent of these laws is to protect and to encourage the wise management and preservation of these significant resources. In the first part of the seminar, the various laws and associated regulations together with their combined impact on historic properties will be presented and discussed. In the second half of the course, we assess and critique the various components of historic preservation, including concepts and ethics as they apply to historic preservation.

 Course Requirements: Students are expected to actively participate in each class meeting. There is a midterm exam following the first part of the course; students undertake a written research project pertaining to historic preservation during the latter half of the class.

AMST 675  Preservation: Theory and Practice

(Cross-listed as ARCH 628 and PLAN 675)

Course Description: This course serves as a basic introduction to the field of historic preservation. Students will be introduced to the language of the field, will come to understand key concepts and assumptions and will become familiar with the overall background of the subject. Emphasis will be placed on the history of historic preservation in the U.S. and in other countries, on basic theoretical precepts and on current practice. Subjects include the role of house museums in historic preservation, historic districts and their regulation, architectural and other resource surveys, the National Register program, historic preservation law, the relationship of preservation to planning, the economics of preservation and landscape and rural preservation. Historic preservation, as students will come to realize, is a many faceted subject, touching upon art, social values, economics and law. However, the discipline remains strongly tied to architecture and planning; and these core interests will continue to take priority in the course.

Course Requirements: The course combines lectures and in-class discussions, together with short field exercises and a research project. Students will be expected to attend class sessions and participate in discussions and question periods. Weekly reading assignments will serve as a basis for classroom discussions; so students are expected to come to class prepared. The course includes a mid-term exam, submission of the results of the field exercise and preparation of a National Register nomination, which will substitute for a term paper, and a Final Exam.

AMST 695 Historic Preservation Practicum/Internship

Course Description: The Practicum/Internship is the final requirement for the Certificate in Historic Preservation. It is restricted to students enrolled in the Historic Preservation Certificate Program and is generally taken as the last course in the sequence of required courses for the certificate, although students may be enrolled simultaneously for the Practicum/Internship and other courses in the program. Students not enrolled in the program may take the Practicum/Internship as part of their other studies, with the permission of the Director, although this is not encouraged.

To enroll in AmSt 695, you must submit a practicum/internship topic and proposal to the Director for approval. Upon receipt of approval, the student will be given a special approval code for registration.

The Practicum/Internship is intended to advance the student’s knowledge of the field and to research areas of special interest. Since the project is meant to be of a practical character, students are encouraged especially to take advantage of work-related opportunities in the field. Past Practica/Internships, for example, have included research reports carried out for Cultural Resource Management firms, studies conducted for non-profit organizations, research and exhibits undertaken for museums, and results of on-going advocacy projects. Students should view the Practicum/Internship as an opportunity to explore areas they have never had an opportunity to consider, and to build on and consolidate projects in which they have had prior involvement.

Course Requirements:

Course Options: 
The course offers two principal options: one, a formal internship with an approved preservation-related organization; or two, a research project, determined in consultation with the Director of the Historic Preservation Program. Briefly, Option One [internship] requires at least 320 hours (eight weeks) of work, either paid or volunteer, for an approved preservation-related organization and a written report of approximately 10 pages (2,500 words) and formal presentation on activities. Option Two can be considered as a “mini-thesis,” requiring approximately the same expenditure of time and effort. Those taking Option Two [research project] are encouraged to pick a topic of a practical or “applied” character and are also required to make a formal presentation of their work, along with a substantially longer written report. Typically, an Option Two [research project] would require a paper of approximately 50 pages (12,000-15,000 words).

It must be emphasized that American Studies 695, Practicum/Internship, is intended to represent a substantial contribution to the historic preservation field. Students are expected to carry out the work in a timely and professional manner and to view the process as a rigorous and formal one. In essence, Option One candidates are expected to present the results of an intensive internship in the field. Option Two candidates will complete what might be considered as a short thesis. Students are expected to use slides, overhead transparencies and other visual aids to present their work in a professional manner. All written material submitted shall be neatly typed and illustrated as deemed necessary to the project chosen. Students should consult the Chicago Manual of Style (and various research aids) for this work. All footnotes, endnotes and bibliographic entries shall be completed in accordance with the Chicago Manual.