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Art History Graduate in Four Years

The Art History Major/Minor:  A How-to Guide

Are you a sophomore, or even a junior, and considering an art history major or minor?      It can be done in four years (or less) --- in fact most of our students do not come to UMM intending to major in art history, but become interested in doing so after some new exposure to this fascinating field of study. The Art History major can easily be added onto other majors such as Studio Art, History, Psychology, Medieval Studies, German Studies (or other world languages), GWSS, and even majors like Biology, Mathematics, Computer Science, etc.

Here are the guidelines, and some additional advice (please talk to an art history faculty member for further guidance):

Requirements for the ArtH Major:

  • ArtH 1111  Ancient to Medieval Art (offered fall semester)

  • ArtH 1121  Renaissance to Modern Art (offered spring semester; sometimes fall)

  • ArtH 1101  Interpreting the Visual World OR ArtH 1131 Art Beyond the West (at least one of these is offered each year)

  • Six elective courses of four credits each in ArtH (note:  no more than three 2000-level ArtH courses can be taken for the major)

  • ArtH 4901 Capstone Assessment in Art History (1 credit; must take in spring semester of graduation year)

  • Studio Art component: there are various options for doing this; you can:       
○     take both semesters of the Basic Studio sequence (ArtS 1101/1103/1105 in fall semester; ArtS 1102/1104/1106 in spring semester);  OR
○     take two studio art courses in two different media (such as photography and ceramics);  OR
○     take the Basic Studio sequence in the fall; and then one other studio course

Requirements for the ArtH Minor:

  • ArtH 1111  Ancient to Medieval Art (offered fall semester)

  • ArtH 1121  Renaissance to Modern Art (offered spring semester; sometimes fall)

  • ArtH 1101  Interpreting the Visual World OR ArtH 1131 Art Beyond the West (at least one of these is offered each year)

  • Three elective courses of four credits each in ArtH (note:  no more than two 2000-level ArtH courses can be taken for the minor)   

  • [there is no studio art requirement for the ArtH minor]

General Advice:

  • Although we do not require that the intro courses necessarily be taken first, or in any order, it is to your advantage to take them as early as possible in the major.

  • We also recommend that you try to fulfill the studio requirement for the major as soon as possible;  the Basic Studio sequence will help you practice the fundamentals of art-making, and you’ll also gain more exposure to contemporary art issues in the discussion component of that sequence. But if you cannot fit in the Basic Studio sequence, consider taking studio courses that align with your art history interests so that you can better understand various art media.

As you take your art history elective courses, combine exploration and concentration. As you explore, be 

  • sure to take at least one elective class from each of the art history faculty.
    Again note that ArtH majors are limited to three 2000-level electives (or 12 credits); ArtH minors are limited to two 2000-level electives (or 8 credits).
  • We also offer ArtH 4810 Practicum in Art History Pedagogy (2 credits) for upper-level students, in which you will get first-hand experience TAing for an intro-level course.  Please contact the faculty member teaching the intro-course you are interested in to see if that may be an option.
  • We strongly advise students to take more than the minimum requirement of a foreign language --- this will help you with graduate school applications and job employment options.  Art history is an international field of study, and you will want to be able to join in on the conversations!
  • We also strongly encourage study abroad, whether short-term or longer;  the best way to study art is to be able to see it in person!  This experience, too, can help with graduate school and job applications.

Links to the UMM Catalog: