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Master of Arts in Art and Architectural History


Total Art and Architectural History Master’s Courses 36 Credits

Required Courses (12 credits)

AAH 500 The Study and Practice of Art and Architectural History (3 CR.)
AAH 505 Art and Architectural History Theory and Methods Seminar (3 CR.)
AAH 605 Research Methods (3 CR.)
AAH 650 Thesis (3 CR.)
AAH 569 Art and Architectural History Internship (0 CR.)

Elective Courses (24 credits)
Eight from the following options:

AAH 520 Themes in World Arts and Architecture (3 CR.)
AAH 521 Issues in Contemporary Art (3 CR.)
AAH 522 Sacred Spaces (3 CR.)
AAH 523 Nature and Art (3 CR.)
AAH 530 Special Topics/Travel Course: Arts and Architecture of Time and Place (3 CR.)
AAH 531 Topics in Art and Architecture of the Classical World (3 CR.)
AAH 532 Topics in Art and Architecture of the Medieval World (3 CR.)
AAH 533 Topics in Renaissance and Baroque Art and Architecture (3 CR.)
AAH 534 Topics in Modern Art and Architecture (3 CR.)
AAH 535 Topics in Art and Architecture of the Americas (3 CR.)
AAH 536 Topics in Art and Architecture of Africa (3 CR.)
AAH 537 Topics in Art and Architecture of Asia (3 CR.)
AAH 538 Topics in Art and Architecture of the Islamic World (3 CR.)
AAH 560 The Newport Seminar (3 CR.)
ARCH 573 Modernism in the Non-Western World (3 CR.)
ARCH 576 Theoretical Origins of Modernism (3 CR.)
ARCH 577 The American Skyscraper (3 CR.)

Students may elect to include in their program one or two winter or intersession seminars by enrolling in AAH 530 Arts and Architecture of Time and Place, a travel-based course designed to study arts and architecture on-site (examples of planned travel courses have included Egypt and Turkey with future possible locations in China and India).

The thesis represents the culminating intellectual experience in the Master’s program. This written essay of publishable quality is produced over two semesters of seminar work in the Research Methods and Thesis courses with an advisor in the area of the student’s research interest. The end product will be evaluated by at least two Graduate Faculty members. Detailed guidelines for this research paper will be provided. Master’s papers are presented at an end-of year, day-long public seminar and are accessioned by the University library to form an archive of collected student scholarly resources.

Course Distribution
In addition to the required introductory seminar (AAH 500), the theory and methods seminar (AAH 505), the internship (AAH 569), the research methods seminar (AAH 605) and the thesis (AAH 650), all students must fulfill a distribution requirement. At least one course must be taken in four of the following eight areas of study with a minimum of one of the four in a region beyond Europe and the Americas:

  • Ancient Greek and Roman Art and Architecture
  • Byzantine and Medieval Art and Architecture
  • Renaissance and Baroque Art and Architecture
  • Modern European Art and Architecture
  • Art and Architecture of the Americas
  • Art and Architecture of Africa
  • Art and Architecture of Asia
  • Islamic Art and Architecture

Concentration in Art History or Architectural History
For the optional Master’s degree concentration in art history or in architectural history, students may elect to focus on one of these two fields of study represented in the department. They must complete six of their twelve graduate courses in either Architectural History or Art History. The core course and thesis requirements are the same as the MA in the more integrated Master of Arts degree in Arts and Architecture.

Undergraduate Courses
With permission, up to two undergraduate courses at the 300 or 400 level may be taken for graduate credit, with the understanding that all assignments and research papers submitted in such courses would be expected to meet a standard commensurate with graduate status.

Complementary Coursework
With the approval of their advisor, students may take courses in the culture, literature, history, and philosophy of their areas of interest. These courses, as well as language courses and studio art courses do not count towards the degree. In the second year of full-time study, or final year of part-time study, students must register for one research methods thesis course and one thesis seminar in which they work under the close supervision of a faculty advisor, thus completing the 36 credit requirement.

Foreign Languages
In addition to completing the required course work, every student must achieve reading proficiency in one foreign language related to their research interests.

Student Internship and Employment
Through the graduate program every student is required to complete the Internship course AAH 569 which provides students with a supervised practical environment in which to practice professional skills at a governmental office or agency, nonprofit museum or gallery, or private arts institution. This experience may lead to future positions in the field.

4+1 Bachelor of Arts + Master of Arts Threshold Review: Junior Year Review
Students are required to have achieved and maintained a 2.67 cumulative GPA through the end of the sixth semester in order to enter directly into the 4+1 Bachelor of Arts/Master of Arts in Art and Architectural History Degree Program. All B.A. in Art and Architectural History students are reviewed for achievement of these standards at this time, and notified of their eligibility to continue with the 4+1 sequence. Students must notify the school of their intention to pursue this 4+1 track.

Students pursuing the 4+1 Bachelor of Arts/Master of Arts in Art and Architectural History degree sequence subsequently complete all 500-600 level coursework at graduate academic standards, which include achieving a minimum passing grade of B- in any 500-600 level course, and a 3.0 cumulative GPA in all 500-600 level courses. Students with Senior Standing and who have achieved a 2.67 cumulative GPA may register for graduate coursework with approval of the instructor and the dean.

Graduate Course Grading, GPA and Graduation Requirements
The minimum passing grade in graduate-level courses is a B- (2.67). The minimum GPA for M.A. in Art and Architectural History graduate students is 3.0.

Duration of Study
Full-time students are expected to complete all requirements for the MA degree in two years. Part-time completion of the MA is also possible; part-time students typically complete the degree in three to five years. With careful planning, undergraduate students or incoming graduate students with advanced standing, and in consultation with their advisor, can complete the degree requirements in an accelerated timeframe. For example, courses may be taken in winter sessions or as the program develops, in summer mini-mesters, or summer sessions. The program for all MA candidates is determined in discussion with the student’s advisor and is a mix of seminar and lecture courses.

After the M.A.

Upon graduating some students may choose to spend a further year or two in museum internship positions or seek curatorial or other professional positions in cultural institutions. Others will be well positioned to enter doctoral programs in Art and Architectural History.