The mechanical watch bridges science and art, and understanding the development of the watch requires insight into both the engineering challenges that have been overcome, and the artistry seen in the design of mechanism and case. This course provides a historical introduction to the development of the watch and how it functions, and discusses in detail the brands and designers who have made the mechanical wristwatch the object of desire that it is today.
This course is written and presented by Dr Andrew Hildreth, independent watch consultant. Andrew has written about watches for GQ, Hodinkee, Watch Journal, QP Magazine, Calibre, and others. He is a Liveryman at the Worshipful Company of Clockmakers.
Including exclusive special features filmed with: Emmanuel Breguet of Breguet, Pascale Lepeu of Cartier, Stephen Forsey of Greubel Forsey, Richard Mille, and more. Interviews give students the opportunity to hear from designers and historians as they elaborate on their brands’ inspirations, philosophies and achievements.
What you will learn:
- You will understand the function and working of the watch mechanism, including the balance, escapement types and automatic winding, as well as complications.
- You will know the major watchmakers, inventors and scientists who contributed to the development of the watch from 1700 to today.
- You will learn how the timepiece evolved from pocket watch to wristwatch, and how the design of the wristwatch changed over the twentieth century.
- You will have been introduced to important watch brands of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries
- You will have an understanding of the significant changes that the development of quartz watches provoked in the landscape of mechanical watches, and how craftspeople-watchmakers have brought a new focus to the design and manufacture of mechanical watches.
- You will have gained insight into the considerations of collecting mechanical watches, and seen how the market for vintage watches has grown.
Registration is open for this course, you can register today by clicking on Enrol Now against your preferred course dates in the Course Dates tab.
This course has been CPD certified.
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Watch our trailer video for an overview of the course
Session 1 – Understanding the development and function of the watch mechanism
Session 2 – The design of the wristwatch across the twentieth century
Session 3 – Significant watch brands
Session 4 – The Quartz Crisis and the rise of craft
Session 5 – The market for vintage watches
20 April 2021 - 24 May 2021
Online Orientation opens on 13 April 2021
20 July 2021 - 23 August 2021
Online Orientation opens on 13 July 2021
Enrol on this course for $1,350 if registering before 8 June 2021
21 September 2021 - 25 October 2021
Online Orientation opens on 14 September 2021
Enrol on this course for $1,350 if registering before 10 August 2021
02 November 2021 – 06 December 2021
Online Orientation opens on 26 October 2021
Enrol on this course for $1,350 if registering before 21 September 2021
The course will require approx. 2.5 hours of study time per week. There will be weekly assignments with set texts and optional further reading. The course content will remain available for six months after the course ends. Students who complete the course within nine weeks will receive a certificate of completion.
Read our Frequently Asked Questions to find out more information about online courses.
The course is facilitated through an online learning environment that is compatible with most modern browsers. It is the responsibility of students to have the proper hardware and software required to participate, along with access to Wifi. The basic technical requirements can be found in the FAQs.
Terms and Conditions
Please ensure you read carefully through our terms and conditions before enrolling on a course.
'Everything from the beginning to the end was perfect. I enjoyed every class and the teacher really managed to transmit his passion in the best of ways. Really loved all the information that was given to me during this course.'
'I would recommend anyone to do it! I have learnt so much new information that I didn't have before and in a lot of different watch fields.'
'I liked the detailed information, clarity of the slides and clear explanations.'
‘This was the first online course I had and I was positively impressed.’
‘The course, overall, was really good and interesting.’
‘I enjoyed seeing the beautiful watches and it was enjoyable listening to the collector speak at the end.’
‘The modules had good focus on each topic and that is really helpful.’
‘I would recommend to take it in order to gain more knowledge about watches world/market.’
‘I think it was a great course.’
‘Dr Hildreth's videos were well presented and he came over as knowledgeable and engaging.’
For any queries about this course please contact
Sarah Buccarelli, Online Courses Department
Telephone: +1 212 355 1501