Requirements for a B.A. in Art History

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Students pose for a group photo in front of a cathedral in Spain

Because the history of art is engaged in problems of historical analysis and the interpretation of culture, it provides students with a broad background in the humanities consistent with a liberal arts and sciences education. The undergraduate degree program is designed to prepare students for competitive placement in graduate schools across the country. As students progress through the program, they become familiar with historical relationships between art objects and society, learn techniques of formal analysis, study patterns of patronage, and absorb methods for interpreting the meaning of paintings, sculptures, and buildings. In the course of their studies, art history majors develop their research abilities and writing skills.

The Bachelor of Arts with a major in art history requires a minimum of 120 s.h., including 39 s.h. of work for the major. Students must maintain a g.p.a. of at least 2.00 in all courses for the major and in all UI courses for the major. They also must complete the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences GE CLAS Core.

Students may count a maximum of 56 s.h. earned in art and art history courses toward the degree; they must earn at least 64 s.h. of credit in courses outside the School of Art and Art History in order to graduate.

B.A. students with a double major in the school (e.g., a major in art history and a major in art) or a major and a minor in the school (e.g., a major in art history and a minor in art) must earn at least 56 s.h. of credit in courses outside the School of Art and Art History in order to graduate.

The B.A. with a major in art history requires the following coursework.

Eleven Art History Courses 33
Two Studio Art Courses 6
Total Hours 39

1. All of the following courses must be completed:

  • ARTH:1050 From Cave Paintings to Cathedrals: Survey of Western Art I (3 s.h.)
  • ARTH:1060 From Mona Lisa to Modernism: Survey of Western Art II (3 s.h.)
  • ARTH:1080 Writing About the Visual Arts (3 s.h.)
  • ARTH:4999 History and Methods

2. At least two art history courses numbered ARTH:2000 through ARTH:2999.

3. At least four art history courses numbered ARTH:3000 through ARTH:4998.

4. At least two art history courses in non-Western areas (e.g. African, Asian, Islamic, Native American) from the following:

  • ARTH:1040    Arts of Africa (3 s.h.)
  • ARTH:1070    Asian Art and Culture (3 s.h.)
  • ARTH:1095    Native American Art (3 s.h.)
  • ARTH:2120    Art and Architecture of the Islamic World (3 s.h.)
  • ARTH:2220    Introduction to the Art of China (3 s.h.)
  • ARTH:2250    Introduction to the Art of Japan (3 s.h.)
  • ARTH:2330    Introduction to Egyptian and Ancient Near Eastern Art (3 s.h.)
  • ARTH:3103    Art of the Pacific Islands (3 s.h.)
  • ARTH:3120    The Art of Ancient Mexico (3 s.h.)
  • ARTH:3150    Art of West Africa (3 s.h.)
  • ARTH:3151    Art of Central Africa (3 s.h.)
  • ARTH:3160    Themes in African Art (3 s.h.)
  • ARTH:3220    Chinese Art and Culture (3 s.h.)
  • ARTH:3225    Contemporary Art and Culture in China (3 s.h.)
  • ARTH:3230    Chinese Painting I: Pagodas and Palaces (3 s.h.)
  • ARTH:3250    Brushwork in Chinese Art (3 s.h.)
  • ARTH:3255    Copy and Paste: Methods of Reproduction in Asian Art (3 s.h.)
  • ARTH:3260    Japanese Painting (3 s.h.)
  • ARTH:3270    Themes in Asian Art History (3 s.h.)
  • ARTH:3275    Garden Culture in East Asia (3 s.h.)
  • ARTH:3280    The Materialization of Sexuality in China and Beyond (3 s.h.)
  • ARTH:3325    Kings, Gods, and Heroes: Art of the Ancient Near East (3 s.h.)

5. Two studio courses:

These courses can be taken prior to completing the Art History coursework in sections 1-3 above.

  • ARTS:1510 Basic Drawing (required prior to second studio course; 3 s.h.)

Choose any additional studio course from the following:

  • ARTS:1520    Design Fundamentals (3 s.h.)
  • CERM:2010    Ceramics I: Handbuilding (3 s.h.)
  • DRAW:2310    Life Drawing I (3 s.h.)
  • DSGN:2500    Graphic Design I (3 s.h.)
  • INTM:2710    Introduction to Intermedia (3 s.h.)
  • MTLS:2910    Introduction to Jewelry and Metal Arts (3 s.h.)
  • PHTO:2600    Photography I (3 s.h.)
  • PNTG:2410    Painting I (3 s.h.)
  • PRNT:2610    Introduction to Printmaking (3 s.h.)
  • SCLP:2810    Undergraduate Sculpture I (3 s.h.)
  • TDSN:2210    Problems in 3D Design (3 s.h.)

Note that the requirements can and do change as deemed necessary by the School. However, once you have begun your program, your requirements will not change. Always refer to your degree audit as the official record of your requirements.