Our master of science in historic preservation (MSHP) program gives a solid foundation for a career in modern preservation. This two-year course of study prepares students from varied undergraduate backgrounds to deal with the complex challenges of rejuvenating the historic main streets of cities and towns, revitalizing neighborhoods, preserving rural areas, and finding new uses for historic landmarks and landscapes.
Our MS in historic preservation meets the academic standards of the National Council for Preservation Education.
Founded in 1979, our program was one of the first of its kind in the Midwest. As part of Ball State's Department of Architecture, it is an interdisciplinary degree drawing from a variety of fields, including history, architectural history, law, economics, landscape architecture, and urban planning.
Classroom instruction and applied experiences cover all the major aspects of preservation practice. You’ll study architectural history while also learning the details of preservation law and funding. The preservation laboratory supports class projects in preservation technology, which is vital to a preservation professional’s work. Both our campus and the city of Muncie provide tremendous historic resources, including a campus historic architecture tour developed by preservation students.
Many classes in this program include hands-on components to produce drawings, reports, plans, and government applications for preservation.
In the preservation design studio, students engage in a consultant experience working with an actual community client organization and produce a needed service, summarized in a report. Such classes provide experience and a professional product to take into job interviews.
Other projects emerge from graduate assistantships and internships with the Center for Historic Preservation. Professional experiences with the center complement classroom work. Past projects have included historic structure reports, Main Street preservation and design recommendations, a pictorial history of the gas boom in east central Indiana, an architectural heritage education program for schoolchildren, and meticulously researched walking-tour brochures of local historic architecture.
Writing and Research
Writing is an important aspect of success in historic preservation, and we offer opportunities to improve this skill through writing research papers and preparing a master’s thesis or creative project.
Experience is Everywhere
Noted professionals in the historic preservation field share their expertise with students as lecturers in the College Guest Lecture Series, guest speakers in classes, and adjunct professors. There are also regular gallery exhibits on preservation-related topics. See what’s coming up in our calendar of events.
Preservation students also learn outside the classroom, taking trips to significant historic communities and places, attending conferences, and participating in field study programs.
Students in the preservation program get involved in preservation-related community and state activities and organize social events during the school year. The Associated Students for Historic Preservation (ASHP) offers many relevant and fun opportunities.
For more information regarding the MSHP Graduate Program, please contact Mary Ann Heidemann, Graduate Program Director.
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