About Art History

In art history the introductory course, Art 201, introduces students to the extended, firsthand study of original works of art and to a wide range of art from various cultures and historical periods. Advanced courses acquaint students with selected periods and movements in art and in the various methods of art historical research. Students learn to refine their powers of critical observation by looking, talking, and writing at length about individual works of art. Currently six to eight advanced art history courses are offered each year. Normally the advanced art history courses are offered in a two- or three-year sequence. The pattern is occasionally altered to suit the special interests of visiting faculty.

The art history junior qualifying exam is written in an advanced art history course the student takes during the junior year.  It consists of a research paper of about 20 pages, written in close consultation with the faculty member teaching the course.  The qual paper typically replaces some or all of the other written work in the class.  At the end of the semester the student is examined orally by a panel of department faculty.