B.A. in Art History

Students of art history learn about works of art and architecture from around the world and from all historical periods. What is more important, they learn the visual skills to interpret these works, develop the historical, social and political understanding to place these works in context, and the research and writing skills to make their own independent research into the visual world around them. 

Art history majors graduate with an understanding of the key periods and artists of the Western tradition, visual literacy, and skills in research and writing.  These abilities are valued by many employers, including museums, galleries, antique dealers, corporations with art collections, historic sites such as Plimoth Plantations, the Newport Mansions, and arts organizations. Some art history majors choose to go to graduate school for a Master’s degree, which gives them increased access to the above jobs, as well as teaching art history at the secondary level (usually in private schools).  Having a Ph.D. makes it possible to teach at the college or university level and opens up many opportunities in museums. (Students who are considering graduate school should take a second language as one of their cognate requirements.)

Admission Requirements

  1. Completion of a plan of study approved by assigned advisor.
  2. Completion of a Declaration of Major Form.

Course Requirements

Course No. Course Title Credits
ART 231Prehistoric to Renaissance Art4
ART 232Renaissance to Modern Art4
ART 331Greek and Roman Art3
ART 332Renaissance Art3
ART 333Baroque Art3
ART 334American Art and Architecture3
ART 336Nineteenth-Century European Art3
ART 337Twentieth-Century Art3
ART 461Seminar in Art History3
ART 493Reading and Research in Art History3

Six Additional Credit Hours of Courses from:

ART 461Seminar in Art History (*)3
ART 493Reading and Research in Art History (*)3

Two courses from:

ART 101Drawing I: General Drawing (**)4
ART 104Design I (**)4
ART 105Drawing II (**)3
* may be repeated for credit, with change in topic.
**Substitutions may be made with consent of advisor and instructor of the substituted course.


Twelve credit hours of courses

in related disciplines, such 12 as history, music, literature, or languages, chosen with consent of advisor. Note: Connections courses cannot be used to satisfy these requirements.


Total Credit Hours


Useful links for art history students at RIC

Page last updated: August 13, 2013