About the undergraduate program
The study of art history is not simply about memorizing artists and artworks; rather, it is a lens through which we look to analyse the broader trends of history in general. Art History is the study of the objects (including architecture) built, or events performed or filmed, specifically to express visually a culture’s ideas, inspirations, aspirations and values. These objects include paintings, sculptures, architecture and landscape architecture, photographs, films, stage performances and mass media. Artworks are a unique medium through which artists, their patrons, their audiences, and their critics can communicate across time, allowing modern viewers to see the world through others’ eyes. What did people value? What did artists try to communicate through their work, both overtly and subliminally? How did they rationalize their world? The study of art history provides an avenue into exploring these questions.
As an art history major at Queens College, students will be exposed to art and artifacts across a broad array of time periods and geographic regions. The Art History major provides a general introduction: to the techniques, principles, and theory of art making; to the broader cultural significance of the arts in an increasingly global society; and to the history of human artistic expression across the globe and throughout time. Art History at QC is global and provides an opportunity to study the visual arts of Asia, Europe, Africa and the Americas, from the Stone Age to today. It is multi‐disciplinary and students explore art and history, archaeology, religion, philosophy, sociology, anthropology.
What to do with an Art History degree from Queens College?
The possibilities are endless and rewarding. Art History majors learn the importance of “attention to detail” so common in many job advertisements. The arts are visual and we look to learn. More specifically, students develop the critical thinking, visual analysis and writing skills necessary for today’s job market and our contemporary image‐saturated culture. A degree in art history prepares students for a variety of career options. Art History is the foundation for: teaching of the arts in K‐12 schools; local, state and federal arts administration; public and private art and cultural museums; libraries and community centers; publishing and journalism in the arts; and art conservation and historic building preservation. Art History prepares students for careers in architecture, landscape architecture, and advertising.
Art History Accelerated Program:
With the permission of the Graduate Advisor, undergraduate Art History majors may take as many as four (4) GRADUATE COURSES as part of the BA in Art History. These courses will contribute to the completion of the requirements for the undergraduate Art History major.
Applicants must have a 3.7 GPA in Art History and should have completed 75-78 credits before applying. Applicants are required to submit by email attachment to the Graduate Advisor (email@example.com): (i) a writing sample consisting of a scan/PDF of a complete and graded essay or paper by the student, which is at least two pages or more and demonstrates some of the student’s best work in a QC Art History course; (ii) the names of two Art History faculty members or instructors at QC who have agreed to serve as the student’s recommenders (no formal letters of recommendation are needed); and (iii) the student’s CUNY ID number. Students approved to begin the Accelerated MA in Art History may take any 700-level Art History course in lieu of necessary undergraduate electives.
*NOTE: If a student earned 12 graduate credits upon the completion of the BA in Art History, it is possible to complete the MA in Art History with an additional year of courses. However, the Art Department typically only offers two or three graduate courses per semester. Therefore, to complete the program on an accelerated basis, students might need to complete additional coursework at Hunter, City, or Brooklyn Colleges or the Graduate Center. Please discuss this with the Graduate Advisor.