Please note: The information displayed here is current as of Sunday, June 20, 2021, but the official Course Catalog should be used for all official planning.
This catalog was created on Sunday, June 20, 2021.
As centers of research and education, and as repositories for cultural heritage, museums play an important role in our society. The museum studies interdisciplinary area provides students with a structure through which to learn about museums as a complement to both their major and the liberal arts as a whole. In addition, museums and related institutions provide career opportunities that take full advantage of a liberal arts degree. Museum professionals must be able to gain expertise in diverse areas, they must enjoy both independent research and interaction with the public, they must be both creative and analytical, and they must be able to operate within complex and diverse organizations.
The museum studies interdisciplinary area is designed to introduce students to the historical and theoretical foundations of museums and other preservation and research institutions, as well as to provide them with the practical skills and knowledge needed to work in such institutions. It is intended to be a supplement to a major in any area. This IA will have a clear use for students in such fields as anthropology, art, art history, natural sciences, and history, but students across the divisions will find the interdisciplinary area useful if they have an interest in pursuing a career in the museum field.
Required for the interdisciplinary area in museum studies
- One core course: ARHI 315: Introduction to the Art Museum (offered every other year)
- Four additional six-unit courses with significant museum studies content, selected in consultation with museum studies faculty. See the list of courses on the Museum Studies IA page for suggested courses that could fulfill this requirement.
- At least one of the following:
- Six units of ANTH 422: Archaeological Collections Management
- Six units of independent study in the Wriston Art Gallery or the University Archives
- A six-unit academic internship at a museum, historic site, or similar institution, from an appropriate academic department
Courses - Museum Studies
HIST 101: Introduction to Historical MethodsAn introduction to the practical skills of doing history aimed at freshmen and sophomores planning to major in history and others seriously interested in learning how to navigate the waters of historical study. Emphasis is on acquiring the techniques current historians use to research into the past, making sense of their findings, and presenting them to others in a variety of media. Using materials appropriate to a theme that changes from year to year, students will discover how to do a thorough bibliographical search of all major genres of historical works, to find and interpret primary sources, and master the basic historical essay.
BIOL 103: Biotechnology and SocietyAn examination of basic biological principles underlying current biotechnology in the fields of human genetics and genetic engineering. Discussion of methods of basic scientific research, the impact of technology on society, and ethical problems in human and agricultural genetics. Credit not applicable to biology major. Weekly laboratories will introduce basic experimental methodology and procedures.
PHYS 107: Physics of MusicExplores the relationship between physics and music, covering such topics as vibrations, waves, interference, resonance, wave forms, scales and temperament, physics of musical instruments, characteristics of auditoriums, impact of electronics. Weekly laboratory.
CHEM 108: The Chemistry of ArtA study of the chemistry underlying topics of interest to artists and art historians. Topics may include: papermaking; pigments, dyes, and binders; photography; glass and ceramics; metals; and printmaking. The course is designed for all students. Combined lecture and laboratory.
PHYS 112: Energy Technology, Society, and the EnvironmentExplores energy production, storage, and usage as they are currently practiced. Certain emerging technologies will also be addressed. Environmental and socio-economic impact will be discussed in the context of limitations imposed by the laws of physics.
DECM 126: Digital Curatorial PracticeThis course will introduce students to the intellectual and practical elements of curatorial work and incorporate tools drawn from the digital liberal arts. Participants will research and curate their own online exhibition drawn from the university’s interdisciplinary digital collections on the Omeka open-access platform. Course work will include readings on contemporary curatorial practice, research into digital collections, and the production of metadata for their exhibition.
DECM 135: Archival DiscoveryAn in-depth exploration of archives and archival research. The course will address the theory and practice of locating, contextualizing, interpreting, and using archival primary sources. Students will work directly with collections in the University Archives and produce a digital project based on their research.
EDST 180: Psychology of LearningAn introduction to brain structure and development in childhood and adolescence, memory systems and types of learning, and approaches to building knowledge, improving skills, and deepening understanding. Culminating topics include motivation, the nature and development of expertise, and instructional design.
ARHI 204: Roman ArtA study of the art and architecture of the Etruscans and the Romans to the end of the Roman empire. Topics include the funerary arts of the Etruscans, the art and archaeology of Pompeii and Herculaneum, developments in imperial portraiture and historical relief, technological innovations in architecture, and the beginnings of Christian art.
CHEM 210: Analytical ChemistryA course in the quantitative description of chemical equilibria in solution (acid-base, complexation, redox, solubility) using classical, separation, electrochemical, and spectrochemical methods of analysis. This course covers methods of quantification, statistics, and data analysis as applied to modern chemistry. Students will have the opportunity to individually design projects. Three lectures and two laboratory periods per week.
ARHI 211: Splendor & Power: Byzantine ArtSurveys the art and architecture of the Byzantine Empire, including mosaics, metalwork, icons, manuscripts, textiles, and other arts. Emphasizes the transition from classical Roman society, the patronage of Byzantine political figures, the profound importance of religion for the arts, and international contacts, especially with western Europe and the Islamic world.
ANTH 220: Research Methods in ArchaeologyPresents the research process in archaeology and offers an overview of essential data-collection and analysis techniques, including site survey and excavation, settlement pattern analysis, lithic analysis, and ceramic analysis. Students will take part in field research. When this course is scheduled at 8-noon TR, class will dismiss early for scheduled convocations.
ANTH 222: Historic Preservation Theory and PracticeHistoric preservation endeavors to identify and conserve historic objects, properties, and landscapes. It has become a focal task for many anthropologists today. This course introduces students to the basic theory of historic preservation, the laws guiding practice, and the techniques used by historic preservation professionals.
ART 222: Artist BooksArtist books are explored in a variety of forms including accordions, exposed and non-adhesive bindings, pop-ups, box making and alternative structures. Letterpress along with other forms of printmaking and surface treatments will be used. Techniques of cutting, folding, sewing, gluing, printing and working in dimension are examined in detail. Unique content is expected for each project.
DECM 223: Adobe Creative SuiteThis workshop is an introduction to the Adobe Creative Suite programs including Photoshop, InDesign, and Illustrator. The class is project centered, allowing each student to explore the multi-faceted and contemporary nature of each program. Methods in image construction, graphic design, typography, application, and output will be explored in detail.
BIOL 230: General EcologyAn introduction to the interactions between organisms and the environment. Explores the role of physical, chemical and biotic processes--including human activities--in determining the structure and function of populations, communities, and ecosystems. Topics include resource availability, competition, predation, symbiosis and natural and anthropogenic disturbances such as disease, biological invasions, pollution and climate change. Lecture and laboratory.
ARHI 240: From Romanticism to Post-Impressionism: Art of the 19th CenturyA study of the development of 19th-century European art that traces the emergence of movements such as Romanticism, Realism, and Impressionism. Readings and class discussion consider how political instability, industrialization, imperialism, and the growth of popular culture influenced production, style, and presentation of painting and sculpture.
ART 240: New Media in ArtAn introduction to new media within a fine art context. Digital photography, experimental video, sound, photo book design, and blogging are covered as students use the Internet as a venue for presenting projects. The evolution of technology, new media theory, contemporary art discourse, and visual culture are examined through projects, readings, lectures, demonstrations, discussions, critiques, and visiting artist presentations. Mac-based. When scheduled on Tuesday-Thursday, class will dismiss early for University Convocations.
ARHI 244: Representing Identity in American ArtAn examination of American art, 1776-1940. This course considers the growth of landscape, genre, and history painting, as well as portraiture, in the context of changing ideas about nationalism, class, race, and gender. Architecture and sculpture are also discussed in terms of how visual culture shaped early ideas about nationhood.
ART 245: InterArts: installationsA class where students make projects that engage the outside world via digital media. Lectures, discussions, readings, and critiques will investigate contemporary interdisciplinary practices and the nature of creativity. Students will be taught the basics of design thinking, leading to conceptual-development, planning, and production. Students work individually or collaboratively on documentary, video, performance, installation, graphic novels, podcasts and web projects. Mac-based.
GEOL 245: Mineralogical AnalysisThis course serves as an introduction to mineralogical analyses. Students will utilize a variety of analytical techniques including Polarized Light Microscopy, X-ray diffraction, and Scanning Electron Microscopy to study crystallography and mineral chemistry. Students will use these tools to analyze a variety of geological samples including rocks, soils, and sediments. Intended to be taken simultaneously with GEOL 240.
ARHI 246: 19th-Century Art, Design, and Society in BritainIn the 19th century, Britain was at the height of her imperial and industrial powers, with a burgeoning middle class with increased spending power. Against this background, this course examines the painting (including Turner, Constable, the Pre-Raphaelites, the High Victorians), architecture, furniture, and interiors of the period, utilizing the wealth of examples in London’s museums, galleries, and buildings. Offered at the London Centre.
ARHI 275: Latin American Visual ArtThe course introduces the cultures of Latin America through a survey of its major movements and artists from the early 19th century to the present. Image-based lectures will be accompanied by discussion of visual and thematically related texts (i.e., biographies, letters, scholarly articles) and carefully selected fragments of videos.
ENST 300: Symposium on Environmental TopicsThe heart of this course is an annual symposium organized around a well-defined topic with both scientific and policy components — e.g., nuclear waste disposal, global warming. Each year, two or three nationally recognized experts on the selected topic are brought to campus. In the weeks before a visit by one of the major speakers, students, together with environmental studies faculty, read and discuss papers suggested by the speaker. The speakers meet with students in the seminar following their public lecture, providing students with an opportunity to interact directly with scientists and policy makers at the forefront of environmental issues.
ARHI 315: Introduction to the Art Museum: History, Issues, and PracticesIntroduction to art museums and exhibitions as objects of critical inquiry, and to issues and practices in the art museum field. Topics will include: history and evolution of collecting and display; museum exhibitions and knowledge formation; collection practices and ethics; exhibition theory and design; controversies, institutional critique, and the artist-as-curator.
ARHI 320: Contemporary Art: Critical Questions in Art TodayA study of art since 1960. Students will examine a diverse range of art works and the theories and strategies that have informed their production and exhibition. Students will learn about how artists today respond to such issues as gender, racial and ethnic identity, globalization, market capitalism, and new media and technology.
ANTH 322: Archaeology of North AmericaAn introduction to the ancient peoples of North America from the initial colonists to the peoples who encountered European colonists some 13,000 years later. Special emphasis is given to the ancient inhabitants of the Great Lakes region.
ART 322: Intermediate Artist BooksA continuation of ART 222, exploring historical and contemporary bindings, and letterpress printing with an emphasis on conceptual ties between structure, process, and function. Additional surface treatments and printing techniques are used in conjunction with altered, collaborative, dimensional, movable books, and historical binding. More advanced techniques of binding, printing, and working in dimension are examined in detail to enhance the conceptual and visual narrative inherent to this sequential medium.
ANTH 326: BizarrchaeologyMuch of the public’s interest in archaeology focuses on “mysteries” of the past or allegedly “unexplainable” phenomena. Since the past is largely impossible to know, it is easy to uncritically fill it with products of the imagination rather than products of ancient peoples. This course examines some of these “imaginary” pasts and the practice of creating them.
ANTH 328: Public ArchaeologyAn exploration of ethical and legal concerns surrounding archaeology: the ownership and treatment of archaeological remains and relations between archaeologists and descendent communities. Topics include the ethics and legality of collecting looting, and the antiquities market; archaeology and nationalism; repatriation of skeletons and artifacts; and professional responsibilities of archaeologists.
HIST 385: History of the BookTo provide an introduction to the interdisciplinary field of Book History, which should help students think more critically about the impact of material culture on intellectual activity. The course will be taught as a speaking intensive seminar, which means that students will frequently be responsible for presenting reading material and leading discussion in the first half of class.
ARHI 400: Topics in Ancient ArtAn examination of a particular topic in ancient art history. Students are expected to carry out independent research. The topic will change periodically. Course may be repeated when the topic is different. Not open to students who have previously received or need to receive credit for ARHI 301 with the same topic.
ARHI 420: Topics in Medieval and Renaissance ArtAn examination of a particular topic in medieval or Renaissance art history. The topic will change periodically. Course may be repeated when the topic is different. Not open to students who have previously received or need to receive credit for ARHI 420 with the same topic.
Topic for Fall 2020: Medieval Selves and Others
This class examines how a variety of people and cultures in the Middle Ages understood themselves, other religions and cultures, and the relationships that existed among them. Identities based on religion, gender, language, geography, and class, among other categories, were constructed and applied for a variety of purposes. Using a broad selection of art works, primary sources, and scholarly readings, will we explore how medieval people understood and represented themselves and others.
ARHI 440: Topics in Modern and Contemporary ArtAn examination of a particular topic in modern or contemporary art history. Students are expected to carry out independent research, culminating in a research paper. The topic will change periodically. Course may be repeated when topic is different. Not open to students who have previous received credit for ARHI 341.
ECON 450: Economics of the FirmEven in a “market” economy, the preponderance of economic activity is carried out through firms and other organizations. The course examines economic theories of the firm, and explores some of the canonical questions, such as why are there firms, how the separation of ownership and control of a firm shapes decision making, what determines the boundary between organizations and markets (e.g., make-or-buy decisions), what types of firms are most innovative, and how new technologies affect organizational structure.
EDST 450: Topics in Education StudiesThis seminar explores issues in contemporary education. Topics vary by term and focus on controversies or innovations in educational systems, practices, and policy or in the relations between school and society. May be repeated when topic is different.
ARHI 480: Topics in Art HistoryAn examination of a particular topic in art history that does not fit the chronological format of the other 400-level topics seminars in art history. Course may be repeated when topic is different. Not open to students who have previously received credit or need to receive credit for ARHI 381.
ANTH 500: Topics in AnthropologyAn examination of a particular topic in contemporary anthropology. The specific topic investigated changes each year. Students are expected to carry out independent research on the topic, either through a review of relevant literature or through field or laboratory work.
Topic for Fall 2020: Anthropology of Migrants and Refugees
This course considers the global processes of displacement while focusing on social groups of migrants and refugees who voluntarily or involuntarily leave their country and cultures of origin.
ANTH 520: Topics in ArchaeologyAn examination of a particular topic in contemporary archaeological research. The specific topic investigated changes each year. Students are expected to carry out independent research on the topic, either through a review of relevant literature or through field or laboratory work. Topic for