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Art History Courses & the Major


With the exception of the Capston Seminar in Art History 082:491/492, all Art History courses are designed for both majors and non-majors.  There are introductory surveys at the 100-level, and advanced courses at the 200/400-level.  Since Art History is seldom taught in secondary schools, few students begin their university careers with knowledge of this discipline.  Therefore, the 100-level introductory courses (082:105 Egyptian through Gothic, 082:106 Renaissance through Contemporary) are usually a prerequisite for any of the advanced 300/400 level courses dealing with western art history, but special written permission of the instructor for admission into advanced courses is usually granted.  Similarly, the 100-level introductory courses (082:107 African, Oceanic and Pre-Columbian and 082:109 East Asian Art) are usually the prerequisites for higher-level courses in their respective areas.

As you will see on the appended course list, the offerings are diverse, especially in the histories of European and North American Art, but you will also find courses in almost every other major culture including Egyptian, Islamic, Chinese, Japanese, Indian, Pre-Columbian, North American Indian, Sub-Saharan African, and Oceanic.  Look through the entire list and then feel free to make an appointment with the departmental secretary to see the instructor.

The requirements for the major are designed to be simple, clear, and flexible.  We urge you to create a logical and coherent selection of courses by consulting the department undergraduate advisor.  A major in Art History must complete at least eleven one-term courses for a total of thirty-three (33) credits, including: the two introductory courses 082:105 and 082:106.

If  a student has taken Art History survey courses in secondary school and received a grade of 4 or 5 on the Art History Advanced Placement Test, credit is granted for either 082:105 or 082:106, depending on what the student and the departmental advisor perceive to be the student's strengths and weaknesses in the discipline.

There are honors seminars for the Introduction to Art History courses, 082:105 and 082:106.  These honors seminars are numbered 082:111 and 082:112 and consist of extra meetings averaging one hour per week with one or both of the principal faculty lecturers in the course.  These meetings take the form of group discussions or visits to museums in the area.  082:111 and 082:112 are open to honors students in the various collegiate units and, on application, to other students who have demonstrated a particular talent in the discipline.  One credit is given for each of these honors seminars.  Thus, the student simultaneously enrolled in 082:105 and 082:111 would spend four hours per week in classes pertaining to 082:105 and would accordingly receive four credits.

Of the nine advanced level courses, at least one must be taken in four of the following five areas: Ancient, Medieval, Renaissance/Baroque, Modern, and Study Abroad.  In the appended course list, the area distribution satisfied by each course is clearly listed.  Students must also take one course in African, Asian, Islamic, South America, or Native American Art.  Of these nine advanced courses, one must be the Capston Seminar in Art History 082:491/492.  This course is  usually taken during a major's junior year. It should be noted that the mandatory Capstone Seminar in Art History cannot be used to satisfy any of the area distribution requirements.  This rule also applies to any Independent Study course, including the Departmental Honors Program.  Art History Majors may also choose and are strongly encouraged to take a second one-term Capstone seminar in Art History 082:491/492.  This second capstone seminar can be used to fulfill an area requierment related to the topic of the seminar. It should also be noted that graduation credit in the major is based on grades of "C" or better.

Majors with a GPA of 3.0 and an Art History GPA of 3.5 or better are eligible to apply for admission to the Honors Program in Art History

A minor in Art History must complete at least six one-term courses for a total of eighteen (18) credits, including 082:105 and 082:106.  For credit towards graduation, students must earn a grade of "C" or better.


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