Becoming and remaining a successful conservator requires knowledge and skills which develop over time
By identifying your strengths and weaknesses and creating your own personal and professional goals it is possible to plan a long and rewarding career in conservation. Continuing Professional Development (CPD) is an essential part of becoming and remaining Accredited.
These route map sections (Record, Goal, Plan, Reflect) contain guidance and resources to help you plan your career.
When you are doing this you should bear in mind the Professional Standards of conservation, which can be found here. It is also helpful to use the Novice to Expert Scale to assess where you feel you are against each criteria.
The formation of UNESCO in 1945 set the framework and drive for the development of national and international legislation including the International Charter for the Conservation and Restoration of Monuments and Sites (The Venice Charter 1964).
These codes of practice cover all aspects of conservation and are key to supporting the work of organisations including Icon, the International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) and the International Institute for Conservation (IIC).
The description "conservator-restorer" is now internationally understood and helps communication across many different specialist fields.
The standards provide a clear set of principles which all professional conservators should adhere to and can use to evaluate their levels of understanding and skill:
PACR Professional Standards
The Scale helps you assess your own strengths and weaknesses against the Professional Standards. Use it to rate yourself from 'Novice' to 'Expert' in five essential skills: Knowledge, Standard of Work, Autonomy, Coping with Complexity and Perception of Context.
It is also a useful way to assess less tangible skills essential to all conservators, such as experience and intuition when making critical decisions.Novice to Expert scale
How to use the scale
This process should be ongoing and can be used to record your progress after each development opportunity. Bear in mind that some of your goals are likely to be long-term plans while others might be more attainable in a shorter space of time.
Points to consider:
Your targets need to be SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time-bound). This is also where you will want to revisit your skills audit to help you identify what training or development opportunity will enable you to achieve your goal.
Points to consider:
There are endless possibilities for you to continue your development as a conservator. These can be formal or informal and are certainly not restricted to attending courses and conferences. Your practical experience on projects, self-directed reading and discussions with colleagues are just as valuable.
The following list of CPD activities may give you some inspiration - and if an opportunity doesn't seem to exist, create it!
Make sure to check the course content closely to ensure it is going to help you develop the right skills to meet your goals. Icon does not endorse any particular conservation course. However, we do advise which academic courses teach our Professional Standards in Conservation - please see our up-to-date Directory.
It is particularly helpful to summarise your thoughts after events such as a training programme, work project, research or other relevant activities outside of your conservation work.
Questions to ask:
Accredited conservators (ACRs) have a responsibility to maintain professional standards by adhering to the Code of Conduct and keeping up-to-date through ongoing career development.
A mandatory CPD process applies to all ACRs to ensure a high standard of conservation across the profession. All ACRs are periodically recalled by Icon to submit a CPD review.
Recall notifications are sent to a sample of ACRS each year between February and March. If on the recall candidates will have until May / June of that year to submit the recall documentation.
For further information please click here.
Planning, assessing and evaluating the effectiveness of activities you have undertaken is essential. The CPD Log sheet can be used for each activity you undertake and can help you keep on top of what it is that you have done, what you have learned and what you should do next.CPD Review Form