Students who major in art history will develop a broad knowledge of the major monuments of art and their historical and cultural contexts. They will acquire and demonstrate the ability to look closely at works of art, provide precise and accurate descriptions, and analyze form and content. Through their studies, they will gain a detailed and sophisticated knowledge of a small group of works of art (selected by artist, period, medium, iconography, function, or some other organizing principle), and they will interpret and evaluate works of art in their historical and cultural context using appropriate art historical vocabulary. Through the course of the major, they will acquire a familiarity with differing theories and methods of art historical practice and show the ability to apply such theories appropriately. At the conclusion of the major, they will demonstrate proficiency in conducting art historical research and presenting the results of such research in both written and oral forms. 

Students planning to major in art history should take the introductory 100-level course required for the major in their freshman or sophomore years. 

Required for the major in art history

The major in art history has the following requirements:

  1. A minimum of nine art history courses (54 units) to include:
    1. ARHI 101: Introduction to Art History
    2. One 200- or 300-level course (6 units each) in each of the following periods or areas:
      • East Asian
      • Ancient/Medieval/Renaissance
      • Modern and Contemporary
    3. One 400-level seminar course (6 units)
    4. ARHI 680: Senior Seminar
    5. Three additional art history courses (18 units)
  2. One course in studio art (6 units)

Senior Experience in art history

The art history Senior Experience consists of ARHI 680: Senior Seminar, taken during the senior year. Students pursuing double majors and double degrees are encouraged to consult in advance with the art history faculty if they are interested in pursuing a research topic in ARHI 680 that integrates their interests in both majors.

Required for the minor in art history

  1. A minimum of six art history courses (36 units) to include:
    1. ARHI 101: Introduction to Art History
    2. Three courses at the 200 or 300 level (6 units each) to be taken from at least two of the following periods or areas:
      • Modern and Contemporary
      • Ancient/Medieval/Renaissance
      • East Asian
    3. One 400-level seminar course (6 units)
    4. One additional Art History course at any level.

Off-campus study

Art history majors are encouraged to participate in one of Lawrence’s international off-campus programs or the program at the Newberry Library in Chicago.