Master's degree in Architectural Heritage

The Master in Architectural Heritage of the Polytechnic University of Cartagena aims to train high-level specialists in the research and conservation of immovable Historical Heritage; that is to say, not only the Architectural Heritage, but also that linked to some branches of engineering, such as the military, hydraulic, industrial, mining, road and rail heritage, which we could include under the rubric, increasingly used in recent years, of Built Heritage.

To achieve this objective, the Master includes teachings on the history of architecture and construction, documentation and representation of heritage, traditional construction techniques, heritage theory and management, and techniques for heritage conservation and revitalization of historical sites.

Thematic Library


In the last decades, our society has reached an increasing degree of awareness about the need to adequately conserve the historical heritage that has been bequeathed to us and the obligation to deliver it in adequate conditions to future generations. This awareness has several far-reaching consequences. On the one hand, the funds that the company is willing to invest in acting on historical heritage have grown greatly in recent decades, and have remained in recent years despite the situation of economic crisis. If a few decades ago only the scarce budgetary allocations of the competent administration in the field of culture were available for these purposes, lately the public and private institutions that are exercising their patronage work in this field are very numerous. On the other hand, the concern for intervention in the historical heritage is not new, but until a few years ago it focused primarily on the figurative arts and religious architecture. On the contrary, in recent decades there has been a notable degree of interest in military, industrial and ethno-anthropological heritage, which has led to talk of an explosion of the concept of historical heritage.

As a consequence, the preservation of the historical heritage is facing major problems; And if we do not know how to face them correctly, the consequences for him can be very serious. In the first place, to intervene in the historical heritage with the minimum required responsibility, it is necessary to thoroughly understand the element on which it operates, and precisely in our time there is an exceptional arsenal of instruments for this. Secondly, and precisely because of the complexity of these diagnostic instruments and the techniques used in the intervention on historical heritage, it is absolutely essential to tackle these problems with the intervention of technicians with specific training in historical heritage. Interventions are being carried out in the heritage built by technicians who have achieved renown in the field of newly built architecture, but who do not have an adequate specialization in historical heritage. As a consequence, the conservation problem is tackled by means of the theoretical and technical tools typical of modern architecture, using a strategy that has been discarded many decades ago in the closest countries, and which would be unacceptable in the conservation of the figurative arts or in other fields of historical heritage.

All this makes it essential to have professionals specialized in the conservation techniques of architectural and engineering works, which present very different characteristics from other fields of historical heritage.


The following are considered as general objectives of the Master:

  • Train specialists in architectural heritage, enhancing the knowledge acquired in the undergraduate phase, and providing students with knowledge about the history of architecture and construction, documentation of historical buildings, theory and management of heritage, as well as the ability to intervene in architectural heritage conservation operations, joining a multidisciplinary team to draft an architectural heritage conservation project, within the framework of the powers of the undergraduate degree with which they access the Master.
  • Provide students with knowledge about research methods and opportunities in the history of architecture and construction, representation of architecture, theory of historical heritage and techniques for preserving historical heritage and the ability to carry out research on these fields of knowledge and present this information and conclusions, either orally or in writing, in accordance with the usual conventions in scientific meetings and publications.
  • Additionally allow students to pursue personal interests in specific fields of architectural heritage or other fields related to it, such as military architecture, industrial and mining heritage, the history of space representation, archeology, museology, cultural landscape and the historical gardens, the vernacular architecture and the structural reinforcement of historical constructions.
  • At the same time, inculcate or enhance in students a series of transversal competences such as analysis and synthesis skills, organization and planning skills, oral and written communication in the native language and, eventually, in other languages, computer skills related to the field. study, motivation for quality, sensitivity towards environmental issues related to urban planning and landscape, autonomous learning, ability to adapt to new situations, initiative and entrepreneurial spirit, and above all, ethical commitment to the social responsibility of their work, with the value of authenticity in the field of Historical Heritage and with scientific ethics and creativity, understood from the respect of the values of the construction on which it is acted or the object that is studied.

In accordance with these objectives, three types of competencies are set out in the following section: transversal competences; specific common competences, to be acquired by all students through compulsory subjects; and specific sectorial competences, which students must acquire based on their personal interests, through optional subjects.