Art History

Programs of Study

Bachelor of Liberal Arts

The Bachelor of Liberal Arts is a baccalaureate degree program offered only to humanities and social sciences students in the College of Arts and Sciences. A Bachelor of Liberal Arts with an Art History Concentration consists of the following:

  • A selection of two disciplines or concentrations within the BLA list of concentrations. One of the concentrations must be Art History (24 to 30 credits)
  • A second concentration is selected according to the student's interest (24 to 30 credits)
  • A completion of the competency requirement (12 credits)
  • An overall GPA of 2.5 is required
  • No minor is permitted
  • The course "Values and Creative Thinking" is not accepted in the BLA program

Objectives in Art History Courses

The aim of any art history course is to increase the student's ability to perceive and interpret the visual content presented in the lectures and required readings. In conjunction with this goal, art history courses seek to stimulate and strengthen independent analytical thinking and observation, critical reading, aesthetic awareness, cultural diversity and the preparation of written and oral presentations.

The aims of specific courses may be the following:

  • To help students understand the history of architecture, drawing, photography, painting, prints, and sculpture in its social and cultural contexts of western and non-western art.
  • To examine the relationships between the development of style in architecture, drawing, photography, painting, prints, and sculpture and the invention of scientific and technical processes.
  • To understand the historical development of conventions, meanings, and symbols in architecture, drawing, photography, painting, prints, and sculpture and to interpret these conventions in their cultural context of western and non-western art.
  • To study the contributions of individual artists to the history of architecture, drawing, photography, painting, and sculpture and to examine with historical and actual trends in western and non-western art.
  • To familiarize student with art historical research methods and bibliographic material, including art journals and magazines.
  • To encourage student to develop analytical and critical thinking about works of art and express their ideas through writing about art.
  • To familiarize students with cultural institutions in the Boston and New England area that collect and exhibit art.
  • To give students experience with solving problems in preparing reports through a collaborative process and oral or written presentation.

Art History Concentration

Art History is a humanistic discipline that is philosophically related to the liberal arts. It aims to study the arts in relation to the life and time out of which they spring from western and non-western cultures. It includes a comprehensive study of the historical periods, cultural expressions, aesthetic judgments and artistic choices manifested in architecture, painting, sculpture, graphics and related processes, and artifacts from Ancient to the present. By examining the intellectual and scientific events that have shaped the creation of art and civilization, students are able to assess aesthetically and critically the artistic products of past and present cultures. Art History assist students to develop aesthetic, analytical and critical judgments as well as writing and verbal skills.

By pursuing a concentration in art history students can prepare for a variety of careers in art history and related liberal art majors, such as museum research, museum, gallery or corporate curator, museum conservator or slide librarian, art editor and director in publishing companies, teaching, graduate studies as well as community oriented cultural programs.


  • Two Foundations Art History courses (6 credits): History of Art I and History of Art II (58-203 and 58-204)
  • Elective Art History courses (15 to 18 credits)
  • Directed study or practical experience (3 to 6 credits)
  • Four or five Art History courses must be at the 300 or above level.