School of Humanities and Sciences

Department of Art History

Bachelor of Arts

Stephen Clancy, Professor and Chair

Visual knowledge and visual experience are important paths to historical awareness and cultural literacy. Courses in art history and architectural studies will sharpen students' ability to perceive and understand visual images and the built environment in a world where ideas and information are increasingly communicated through visual media. It will also deepen students' understanding of history in general. Because visual artifacts eloquently express cultural values, students will learn to analyze works of art and architecture as carriers of political, social, and religious meanings. Our courses also enrich students' lives by opening the door to a lifetime of aesthetic enjoyment, intellectual stimulation, and creative inspiration.

The department offers three major programs:

  1. The B.A. in art history. This degree prepares students interested in pursuing careers in the arts or further study at the graduate level in the humanities. This major will also appeal to students who wish to study visual culture, human expression, or ideas through history.
  2. The B.A. in art history with concentration in architecture. In addition to fulfilling core requirements for the B.A. in art history, students with a particular interest in the history of architecture may elect to complete a concentration in architecture. The concentration complements the broad coverage of the major requirements by providing interested students with in-depth exposure to architectural history and theory.
  3. The B.A. in architectural studies. This curriculum provides training for students interested in careers and master's-level study in the design professions. This program combines coursework in architectural history and theory, sustainability studies, math, and physics with studio experiences in both art and architectural design to lay the groundwork for professional training and practice in architectural design, landscape architecture, historic preservation, urban design, and city planning. Note that the B.A. in architectural studies is a degree that does not qualify students to practice architecture. Students who want to practice architecture and become licensed architects may pursue an NAAB accredited master of architecture program after completion of the B.A. in architectural studies, or the student may submit experience to the New York State Education Department that is acceptable to the New York State Board for Architecture totaling nine years after completion of the B.A. in architectural studies. Graduates of the B.A. in architectural studies would most likely need to pursue a three- to three-and-a-half-year master of architecture program in order to receive a master of architecture degree from an NAAB accredited program.

The minor in art history complements studies in a wide variety of majors, among them studio art, cinema and photography, communications, literature, cultures, and languages.

Requirements for Honors in Art History

The honors program in art history offers stimulating, advanced undergraduate training for art history majors who show particular promise in the field. Students interested in entering the program should apply to the chair of the department during their junior year. After consultation with other faculty members and evaluation of the student's ability to meet the requirements outlined below, the chair will give written notification of acceptance to the program.

Upon acceptance, the student agrees to do a 3-credit honors tutorial or honors independent study course during the fall semester of the senior year, under the guidance of one or more art history faculty members. (The honors course must be completed during the fall semester so that the decision regarding honors can be made in time to be included in graduation announcements.) Research done in this course culminates in an honors thesis, which is evaluated and graded by the faculty members who have agreed to work with the student. Honors are granted only to those students who receive a B or better on this project.

Students interested in applying for honors in art history must meet the following requirements:

  1. An overall GPA of 3.00 and a 3.50 average in art history courses.
  2. Approval by the department faculty. The decision is based on the faculty's judgment of the student's preparation and motivation to do independent research, and on the availability of two or more members of the faculty to work with the student.

Art History, B.A.
Art History, B.A. with architecture concentration
Architectural Studies, B.A.
Minor in Art History


Requirements for the Major in Art History -- B.A.

Core requirements

The core requirements consist of four courses (12 credits):

Select two level-1 courses from the following:

ARTH 16000

Art across Cultures or 

 

ARTH 11400 Architecture across Cultures 3
ARTH 13500 Introduction to Visual Culture 3
ARTH 11100 Episodes in Western Art 3
  Total, level-1 courses 6

 And

ARTH 20100 Practicing Art History 3
 

One course in architectural history at level 1 or level 2.

  • ARTH 11400 can count as either 3 credits at level 1 or as the architecture requirement, but not both.
3
  Total, core requirement 12

 Art history electives

Students are required to complete an additional 27 credits of electives in the Department of Art History.

 

At least three courses at level 2, including:

  • One course focusing on art, visual culture, or architecture before 1400.
  • One course focusing on art, visual culture, or architecture from 1400 to 1750, and
  • One course focusing on art, visual culture, or architecture after 1750.
 9
  If a course satisfies one of these chronological requirements, it will be indicated in the course description.  
  A minimum of two courses at level 3
  At least 6 additional credits at level 3 or level 4, including the level-4 Senior Experience, described below
 

Other art history electives at any level

  • A maximum of 9 credits at level 1 may count toward the major, whether taken to satisfy the core requirements or an art history elective
  • CNPH 24000 History of Photography may be substituted for one of the art history electives
 6
  Total, art history electives 27 
  Total, credits in art history 39

Senior experience

Select one of the following, to be completed in the senior year or during the summer preceding the senior year (or as approved by the department chair):

ARTH 49000

Seminar (3)

 

ARTH 49200

Tutorial (3)

 

ARTH 49600

Senior Internship (3)

 

ARTH 49700

Independent Study (for department honors thesis only) (3)

3

Majors who meet the prerequisite may take a seminar, tutorial, internship, or independent study before the summer preceding their senior year, but it will not count toward the "senior experience requirement." Majors must indicate their senior-year activities before the end of the second semester of their junior year by submitting a "senior experience plan form" (available from the department chair).

Courses outside the department

Art

Any course in the art department
(CNPH 14100 Introduction to Photography may be used as a substitute for a course in the art department.)


3

Language

All art history majors are required to complete a foreign language with a letter grade through level 2 in the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures, or demonstrate equivalent proficiency as part of their major requirements.

0-12

 

Total, courses outside the department

3-15

 

Electives

66-78

 

Total, B.A. in art history

120

 

Requirements for the Major in Art History with a Concentration in Architecture -- B.A.

Levels in the major

  • No more than four courses at level 1

  • A minimum of two courses at level 3, and at least 6 additional credits at level 3 or above

Foundational courses

ARTH 11300

Elements of Architecture

3

ARTH 11400

Architecture across Cultures

3

ARTH 20100

Practicing Art History

3

ARTH 11100

Episodes in Western Art or

 

ARTH 13500

Introduction to Visual Culture or

 

ARTH 16000

Art across Cultures

3

 

Total, foundational courses

12

Art history restricted electives

Select at least 12 credits from the following:

ARTH 20900

Introduction to the Roman World (3)

 

ARTH 22200

Architecture from Catacombs to Cathedrals (3)

 

ARTH 23200

Architecture from Renaissance to Revolution (3)

 

ARTH 23300

Great Spaces: An Introduction to Urban Design (3)

 

ARTH 24000

Nineteenth- and Twentieth-Century Architecture (3)

 

ARTH 31800

Memorable Cities (3)

 

ARTH 35800

Form, Function, and Fantasy: Architecture since 1945 (3)

 

ARTH 38000

Studies in Architectural History and Theory (3)

12

 

Total, art history restricted electives

12

Art history free electives

Students are required to complete an additional 12 credits of free electives in the Department of Art History.

Total, art history free electives

12

These 24 art history elective credits must include the following:

  • a minimum of one course focusing on art, visual culture, or architecture before the year 1400,

  • a minimum of one course focusing on art, visual culture, or architecture from the years 1400 to 1750, and

  • a minimum of one course focusing on art, visual culture, or architecture after the year 1750.

If a course satisfies one of these chronological requirements, it will be indicated in the course description. CNPH 24000 History of Photography may be substituted for one of the art history electives.

Senior experience

Select one of the following, to be completed in the senior year or during the summer preceding the senior year (or as approved by the department chair):

ARTH 49000

Seminar: Architecture Topic (3)

 

ARTH 49200

Tutorial: Architecture Topic (3)

 

ARTH 49600

Senior Internship: Architecture Focus (3)

 

ARTH 49700

Independent Study (architecture topic -- for department honors thesis only) (3)

 
 

Total, senior experience

3

Courses within the concentration may be used to satisfy the "senior experience" requirements of the major and may also count toward the electives required within the major. Majors who meet the prerequisites may take a seminar, tutorial, internship, or independent study before the summer preceding the senior year, but it will not count toward the "senior experience" requirement. Majors must indicate the senior-year activities before the end of the second semester of their junior year by submitting a "senior experience plan form" (available from the department chair).

Total, credits in art history

39

Courses outside the department

Art

Any course in the art department (CNPH 14100 Introduction to Photography may be used as a substitute for a course in the art department.)

3

Language

All art history majors are required to complete a foreign language with a letter grade through level 2 in the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures, or demonstrate equivalent proficiency as part of their major requirements.

0-12

 

Total, courses outside the department

3-15

 

Electives

66-78

 

Total, B.A. in art history with architecture concentration

120

Requirements for the Major in Architectural Studies -- B.A.

Courses within the department

Required courses
ARTH 11300 Elements of Architecture 3
ARTH 11400 Architecture across Cultures 3
ARTH 23300 Great Spaces: An Introduction to Urban Design 3
ARTH 30100 Architectural Studio I: Fundamentals of Architectural Design and Drawing 4
ARTH 30200 Architectural Studio II: Environmental Design and Digital Representation 4
ARTH 48000 Portfolio in Architectural Studies 1
Architectural history restricted electives

Select 12 credits from the following, two courses from each category:

Category I
ARTH 20900 Introduction to the Roman World 3
ARTH 22200 Architecture from Catacombs to Cathedrals 3
ARTH 23200 Architecture from Renaissance to Revolution 3
ARTH 24000 Nineteenth- and 20th-Century Architecture 3
Category II
ARTH 31800 Memorable Cities 3
ARTH 33100-33199 Studies in Art from Ancient to Renaissance (topic to include substantial architecture content) 3
ARTH 35800 Form, Function, and Fantasy 3
ARTH 38000-38099 Studies in Architectural History and Theory 3
Senior capstone

Select 3 credits from the following:

ARTH 49000 Seminar in Art History (architecture topic) 3
ARTH 49200 Tutorial in Art History (architecture topic) 3
ARTH 49400 Internship: Art History (architecture placement) 3
Art history electives
Minimum of two level-1 or level-2 nonarchitecture courses in art history, with at least one at level 2 6
Credits within the department
Total, department courses 39

Courses outside the department

Required courses
PHYS 11700 Principles of Physics I 4
MATH 10800 Calculus for Decision Making or  
MATH 11100 Calculus I 4
Building sustainable societies

Select a minimum of 6 credits total, one course from each category below:

Category I
ENVS 12000 Environmental Sentinels 4
ENVS 12100 Environmental Science and Technology 4
ENVS 20200 Topics in Sustainability 3-4
CHEM 10500 Energy and the Environment 3
PHYS 11800 Principles of Physics II 4
Category II
POLT 36600 Environmental Politics 3
HIST 27000 History of American Environmental Thought 3
HIST 24300 The City in U.S. History 3
PHIL 25000 Environmental Ethics 3
SOCI 20600 Urban Sociology 3
Art
ART 13000 Introduction to Drawing 3
ART 12000 Two-Dimensional Design or  
ART 12100 Three-Dimensional Design 3
Credits outside the department
Total, credits outside the department 20

Summary

Total, credits within the department 39
Total, credits outside the department 20
Electives 61
Total, B.A. in architectural studies 120

Minor in Art History

Eighteen credits in art history courses, with no more than 6 credits in level 1 courses and at least 3 credits in courses at level 3 or above. Internships or independent studies may not count toward the requirement of at least 3 credits in courses at level 3 or above. Three credits of one of the following may be substituted for 3 credits of art history: any course in the art department (except in the case of art majors), and CNPH 24000 History of Photography or CNPH 14100 Introduction to Photography (except for majors in the Department of Cinema, Photography, and Media Arts).