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Prospective students with a BA in Art History (or related field) may apply to the MA program, the dual MA/MSLS, the dual MA/MSIS, or directly to the PhD program. For those who already have an MA in Art History, you may apply to our PhD program. Please contact the Director of Graduate Studies for Art History if you have questions about the application.

Faculty Currently Accepting Grad Students

Bauer – Modern Decorative Art/Design; Modern Architecture; Film History (MA, MA/MSLS or MA/MSIS only)
Bowles –  African American Art (including Contemporary)
Brachmann – Northern Renaissance; Medieval Art & Architecture (topics from 1100 AC on)
Cao – American Art
Desplanque – 18th and early 19th century Europe, especially France; Visual and Material culture studies; Art Worlds and Art Markets; Digital Humanities and data-driven research
Levine – Contemporary Art
Rovine – African art, especially African dress, textiles, and historical art of the colonial era
Sherman – Modern Europe (mid 19th-mid 20th century, especially France); Critical Museum Studies (MA, MA/MSLS or MA/MSIS only)
String – Northern and Italian Renaissance Art: Portraiture, Gender Studies; Tudor Visual Culture (MA, MA/MSLS or MA/MSIS only)
Williams – Early 20th c. Latin America (Spanish-speaking nations); Critical Museum Studies; African Diaspora Studies



When do I apply?

The deadline for applications is available on The Graduate School’s Graduate Degree Programs web page.

How do I apply?

Applications for admission are completed through The Graduate School’s online application system. Please use the links below to find additional information and to access the online application.

After the admissions deadline, all applications will be reviewed for completeness. Any outstanding documentation will be requested from you at that time and should be submitted promptly.

Required Application Materials

The Department of Art and Art History requires applicants to the Graduate Programs in Art History to submit a Statement of Purpose and an Example of Written Work. Both of these items should be electronically submitted in the Supplemental Documents section of the online Graduate School application.

In a statement of purpose of no more than 500 words, please describe concisely your reasons for wishing to undertake professional training in the history of art. At this time, what area(s) of study do you plan to pursue? If you are undecided, please feel free to say so and, instead explain why you consider this program to be a suitable match for your interests. Alternatively, you may describe issues or approaches from previous coursework that you found stimulating and would like to pursue further.

Applicants to the graduate programs in art history must submit an example of written work demonstrating their research and writing skills, with a maximum length of 15 pages. Images (as a pdf) and/or bibliography may be submitted as a third component in the Supplemental Documents section of the online Graduate School application. Suggested submissions are an academic paper, or excerpts from an honors thesis, or a Master’s thesis. If you choose to mail your submission, the submitted copy will be returned only if a self-addressed envelope with sufficient return postage is included with the submission.

International Applicants

In addition to the required application materials, international applicants must also submit:

Preparation for Admission to the Graduate Program

An undergraduate degree in art history is highly recommended, but not required, for admission to the graduate program. Students who do not have an undergraduate degree in art history should have 24 credit hours of coursework in art history, archaeology, cultural anthropology, and/or aesthetics. Only students who do not have an undergraduate degree in art history need to list these pre-requisite courses on the online Graduate School application. The online application does not have a way to require this information only if an applicant does not have an Art History degree.

Financial Aid for Art History Students

All applicants for admission who have completed their applications by the Graduate School deadline are automatically considered by the department for nomination for Graduate School awards.  Applicants and students in residence are also eligible for teaching and research assistantships, which are awarded by the department. There are also annual service and non-service awards. Students desiring financial aid should consult as early as possible the Office of Scholarships and Student Aid for more information.