Requirements for the Major in Art History
The Art History Major provides an effective focus for a general education, encouraging students to range broadly in their undergraduate curricula. It guides students as they interpret visual imagery critically and historically, providing them with: 1) knowledge of the theories, histories and philosophies of art; 2) knowledge of a large set of art objects from cultures and periods stretching from the present to the distant past; 3) instruction on how to communicate effectively about art works in both written and oral forms; 4) the skills to carry on effective research in art history; and 5) the general skills and knowledge to pursue a productive career or further education in art history. During their senior year, art history students write a sustained research paper on a subject of their choice that has disciplinary interest, which will demonstrate their attainment of the relevant departmental learning objectives stated above.
The major can provide pre-professional training for those who seek advanced degrees in the subject and plan careers as professors or teachers or as gallery and museum administrators and curators. The study of art history can also directly underpin careers in studio art, city planning, architecture and landscape design.
Courses in art history taken outside The Claremont Colleges for credit must be approved by the department in advance. All courses for the major must be taken for a letter grade.
In order to ensure exposure to a wide range of art works, practices and theories, across both time and place, art history majors will take:
- Two introductory courses: ARHI 051A PO and ARHI 051C PO .
- One course in the art of Asia, Africa or the African Diaspora.
- One course in the art of the Americas.
- One course in the art of Europe before 1840.
- One course in art since 1840.
- Two additional art history courses.
- One studio art course.
- Senior seminar in the fall semester (ARHI 190 PO ).
- Senior Thesis in the spring semester (ARHI 191 PO ).
Majors who intend to pursue graduate work should study at least two foreign languages appropriate to their areas of interest. Students are strongly encouraged to apply for internships in museums, galleries and conservation labs, and to study abroad during their junior year.