Art History Degree Programs, Schools and Requirements

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The Exciting Field and Career in Art History

The Exciting Field and Career in Art History

If you’ve gone through one college brochure after another and still have yet to discover your major, perhaps you should consider a degree in Art History. If you’re looking for an exciting and rewarding career where your artistic interests can be fed and one that will that concentrates on subjects you’re passionate about, a degree in Art History may be just what you need.

Contrary to popular belief, Art History is about far more than just studying the past of a piece of art, or a certain form of artwork. Art History involves learning how different cultures throughout world used art to express themselves socially, politically, economically, and architecturally. The study of these past cultures’ art also helps us gain knowledge about these cultures and their people. So what can you expect to learn in an Art History program? Students who are just starting out in this field will "learn the language" so to speak. You’ll be exposed to the vocabulary of cultures past; the meanings of words used in Art History and the words used to describe different pieces of art, will offer you a very valuable foundation on which to build your career in the Art History field. The study of Art History will also give you the extraordinary chance to see actual pieces of history and will allow you to study different works of art, their medium, culture, and background. You’ll study pieces of art from past cultures and will begin to understand how each piece of art tells its own story about the styles, religions, economy, literature, social, and political aspirations of its maker(s). Not only can you learn about different cultures throughout history and their forms of artwork, but when you study for your Art History degree, you’ll actually have the chance to examine some of these priceless pieces yourself! Now that you’re excited about earning a degree in Art History, you’re probably wondering about the graduation requirements for this particular field of study. For those who major in Art History, most colleges and universities will require completion of at least ten to twelve courses or about thirty credit hours. The subjects will be taken from classes such as the following:

Two Classes on Art History as a prerequisite, and ten courses from these choices:

  • Six courses of Art History, each one in a different field of study, such as Ancient Art, Medieval Art, Renaissance Art, Baroque, Neoclassical, Christian, etc.
  • One or two of these courses: Art Interpretation, Ancient Art, Visual Arts, especially early American to present day American, Modern Art, Modern Architecture, Contemporary Art, History of Artists such as Rembrandt, Berndidni, etc.
  • You’ll probably also get to study at least one of these: Introduction to Art, Basic Watercolor, Basic Drawing, Basic Oil Painting, Art Restoration, and Printmaking.

Most schools will even offer the chance to intern at museums, historical sites, estate appraisals, auction houses, and many other locations near the school. This can be an exciting way to learn more about your field of study, and a great way to get hands-on experience in the field of Art History. It’s a very good idea, if you have a hunger and a passion for the arts and plan to have a career in this field, to have an Art History degree under your belt. You will not only be prepared for jobs such as an Art Teacher, Museum Curator, Art Exhibitionist, or Art and Estate Appraiser, but you’ll also be prepared for any career which involves researching, visual comprehension, creative writing, and critical analysis. Art History is a fascinating subject that tells us about past cultures, about their history, their struggles, their successes, and about their lives in general. A career in this field is an exciting and rewarding one that can feed the hunger of anyone longing to earn their living by exploring, or teaching others about, art.