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Art: Art History

Art History

What is Art History?

Art History majors are passionate about looking and thinking critically about art, visual culture, and their histories. Students in OU’s Art History program study the art of different cultures, past and present, in the OU School of Visual Arts surrounded by other students pursuing degrees in art and design, which makes for a dynamic environment that bridges the study of art to the making of art. The adjoining Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art has a large collection of art from around the world with especially strong holdings in Native American art, art of the American West, and French Impressionist and Postimpressionist paintings.  Classes are often taught in the museum to bring students into direct contact with the art they are studying.

In conjunction with the art history courses, undergraduate students also take humanities courses in areas such as history, literature, anthropology, philosophy, or histories of dance, music, or drama. A minimum of four classes in a language are required, as well as nine hours of studio art. Thus, the art history degree is truly interdisciplinary, allowing for many elective courses. Courses in museum studies are offered regularly, and there are many opportunities for museum internships both on and off campus.

Students listen to a lecture

So, what's my degree?

Bachelor of Arts- Art History

Do my interests fit?

Art History majors typically have interests in:

  • Art
  • Visual Culture
  • Looking
  • Writing
  • History
  • Humanities

What courses will I take?

Art history courses include:

  • Introduction to Art History
  • Art History, Theory & Practice
  • Introductions to Early Modern Art, Modern Art, Contemporary Art, and Native American Art
  • Introduction to Museum Studies
  • Upper-division courses on the art of the world from prehistory to the present

Wait, I can have a minor?

Visual Art students may want to explore minors in:

How can I get involved?

  • Museum Ambassadors - Fred Jones Jr. Museuam of Art
  • Red Clay Faction—Ceramics
  • Print Club
  • VASA Visual Arts Student Association
  • Graphic Design Association

How can I study abroad?

  • OU in Arezzo offers great opportunities for students to study art, especially the art of Ancient Rome and the art of the Italian Renaissance and Baroque period, while abroad at the University’s campus in Tuscany, Italy.
  • Students can also participate in one of OU’s other Summer Study Abroad programs to earn general education course credit.

What kind of career could I pursue?

  • Museums
  • Art galleries and auction houses
  • Libraries
  • State and regional historical societies
  • Graduate School
  • Colleges and universities

How much will I make?

Visit the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ website to explore the median pay for jobs you can pursue with this degree. 

Contact Us

Weitzenhoffer Family College of Fine Arts The University of Oklahoma

OU School of Visual Arts
Phone: (405) 325-2691