BA in Art History Program By University of Chicago |Top Universities

BA in Art History

BA in Art History

  • QS World University Rankings
    10
  • Degree BA
  • Study Level Bachelors
  • Duration 48 months
  • Start date Jan-2000
The study of art history encompasses the visual art, architecture, and material culture of a wide range of regions and historical periods. Art history courses develop students' skills in visual analysis, interpretation of images and texts, use of historical sources, and engagement with scholarly debates. Within the department, survey classes provide a chronological overview of an extended period in Western or non-Western art, while Art in Context courses focus on a particular artist or artists, medium or theme, artistic problem, movement, or period. Upper-level classes may be similarly focused but at a more advanced level, or may deal with theoretical questions. After taking an introduction to art historical methods in their third year, fourth-year students who are majoring in art history conduct independent research on a topic of their own devising, producing a BA paper with the guidance of a faculty member and a graduate preceptor. The major in art history thus introduces students to a variety of cultures and approaches while providing analytical skills to enable students to focus their attention productively on specific questions in the study of art. In combination with a broad general education, art history provides excellent preparation for professions as well as graduate school in art history and careers in the arts. The BA in art history is intended to furnish students with a broad knowledge of Western and non-Western art, including architecture. It also provides an opportunity for the complementary, intensive study of an area of special interest. It is recommended for students who wish to develop their abilities in visual analysis and criticism; to acquire some sense of the major developments in the arts from ancient times to the present; and to understand the visual arts as aspects of social, cultural, and intellectual history. So conceived, the study of art is an element of a general, liberal arts education; the skills of analytical thinking, logical argument, and clear verbal expression necessary to the program are basic to most fields. Thus, the major in art history can be viewed as training for a wide range of professions. The program in art history also prepares interested students for advanced study at the graduate level and, eventually, for work in academia, museums, galleries, and other organizations.