The study of the visual arts in their historical contexts enriches our understanding of human creativity and the human condition. The undergraduate curriculum introduces the student to the visual arts of the past and the present. Courses cover the arts of ancient and medieval Europe, modern Europe, the United States, Africa, and East Asia, including China, Japan, Korea, and the art of Buddhism. Courses are offered in the history of architecture, photography, prints, and drawings.
Three degrees can be earned with majors in the history of art, the B.A. and B.G.S. in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and the B.F.A. in the School of the Arts. Students may also choose to minor in art history.
Qualified KU undergraduates may earn both a B.A. and M.A. in art history in 5 years through the Accelerated M.A. program.
KU offers graduate art history courses in European, American, and East Asian art. Students may pursue graduate degrees in European and American art or East Asian art. Students who are interested in pursuing graduate degrees that emphasize international or transnational modern and contemporary art should follow the concentration (European and American or East Asian) that best aligns with their areas of interest.
The M.A. provides students with a broad and deep knowledge of the visual arts, as well as study of the basic concepts, theories, and methods of the discipline. The M.A. may be pursued as a terminal degree or as preparation for doctoral studies at KU or to apply elsewhere.
The Combined M.A./Ph.D. is a streamlined degree track intended for students who want to pursue the Ph.D. in art history at KU, but who do not yet hold the M.A. degree in art history.
The Ph.D. is intended for students who hold the M.A. degree in art history.