B.A. Art History & Visual Studies
The Art History & Visual Studies program offers three distinct tracks for undergraduate majors and minors. These tracks are designed to help students prepare for the many career choices available to students pursuing a degree in one of the richest and most diverse fields in the humanities.
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Art History & Visual Studies: Art History
This option focuses on the development of the visual arts, particularly on the histories of “high” or “fine” art within a broad liberal arts tradition. Students study artistic images, objects, and events representing diverse cultures within a global context. The program puts strong emphasis on the acquisition of skills in written and oral communication, foreign language comprehension, critical reading, and problem solving, all leading to the pursuit of independent scholarship in art history. These are skills useful for virtually any career path, but specifically, this option prepares majors to pursue post-graduate studies in art history and related humanistic disciplines, leading to careers in academia, arts administration, visual resources management, museum professions, and similar fields.
Art History & Visual Studies: Museum Studies
This option introduces majors to museology and the variety of careers available within or related to the museum profession. Majors examine the processes by which objects or events are interpreted within the context of museums and the roles that museums, broadly defined, play in society. Museum Studies also establishes a bridge between theory and practice by requiring an experiential education component. Students who choose this option are interested in working with the art object and often pursue further training leading to careers in galleries, museums of all kinds, auction houses or other institutions which present images, objects or events.
Art History & Visual Studies: Visual Studies
Ours is a visual culture. Workplaces today are visually saturated environments, our dominant pastimes are visual media (films, television, video, the internet, etc.); knowledge is commonly communicated visually. Visual Studies teach critical viewing to prepare us for the visually complex milieu of the 21st Century. This option offers majors a broad interdisciplinary selection of courses and methodologies from the arts, design, humanities, social sciences, and sciences to study the uses to which people put the visual and the place of the visual within the context of diverse cultures and within a global context. Students who choose this option could pursue further training leading to careers in visual resource management, law, journalism, or may pursue graduate work in visual studies, cultural studies, film studies, and art history.
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