Art History Department

Programs

GRADUATE ART HISTORY

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Master of Arts

The MA program is a course-based and research-intensive degree designed to prepare students for curatorial work, art consultation, heritage programs, cultural journalism, secondary school teaching, and doctoral research.

Art Gallery of Ontario © 2014. Bequest of Frank P. Wood, 1955

Art Gallery of Ontario © 2014. Bequest of Frank P. Wood, 1955

Admission Requirements
Candidates are admitted under the general regulations listed by the School of Graduate Studies. Applicants should have a strong overall grade average in the history of art and closely related subjects, with at least a B+ average in recent senior art history and/or humanities courses. The Department also welcomes applications from outstanding candidates with a background other than art history (with at least 5 art history courses in their academic background). In addition to transcripts, a CV and three letters of reference, applicants must include a statement of intent and a sample research paper. Details on the Admissions page.

Program Requirements
Students will take six seminars (or three full-course equivalent [3.0 FCE]). Full-time students should be able to complete the program within one year (or two terms) by taking three seminars (1.5 FCE) in each of the two terms. For a three-term year, please discuss with the Director of Graduate Studies.

  • Distribution. Course work should be chosen from at least three of the four areas designated as Ancient, Medieval, Early Modern, and Modern and Contemporary. No more than 2.0 FCEs may be taken in any one of these fields. Students must also take coursework in at least two geographical areas (Western, East Asian, South Asian, African, or pre-approval from the Director of Graduate Studies). Up to one credit (two half year courses or 1.0 FCE) may be taken in another graduate department upon approval from the Director of Graduate Studies. If a course cuts across boundaries between two areas, it shall count as one field only.
  • Language Requirements. The MA degree requires demonstrated reading knowledge of a language other than English for graduation (normally French, German, Italian, or Chinese); This will be tested in the first session of the program. Language exams are administered by the Department and consist solely of a two-hour translation exercise of two art history passages from two areas of study; only hard copy print dictionaries may be used.
  • Orientation to Art Historical Research Methods. New students should attend Orientation to Art Historical Research Methods: a workshop designed to familiarize new students with research resources, led by the Department Librarian.

Part-Time MA
We have a limited number of places for students who wish to complete the MA part-time.  Part-time students have 6 years to complete the degree. A Balance of Degree Fee is calculated at the end of the part-time studies to equal the cost of the full-time MA. If you wish to apply for the part-time MA, you must indicate this on the application form.

Doctor of Philosophy

The PhD program is designed to prepare students for college and university teaching, museum work, and other research positions. Students admitted to the PhD program with a MA will be guaranteed minimum five-years of funding (see section on Fellowships) and will be given teaching experience as a teaching assistant and/or as a course instructor.

Art Gallery of Ontario © 2014. Purchase, Frank P. Wood Endowment, 1956

Art Gallery of Ontario © 2014. Purchase, Frank P. Wood Endowment, 1956

Admission Requirements
Candidates are admitted under the general regulations listed by the School of Graduate Studies. Applicants should have an exceptionally strong academic record with a grade average in the history of art and closely related subjects of at least an A- average in recent senior art history and/or humanities courses. Those applying with a MA in art history should have at least an A- average in their graduate courses. The Department also welcomes applications from outstanding candidates with a background other than art history (with at least 5 art history courses in their academic background). In addition to transcripts, a CV and three letters of reference, applicants must include a statement of intent and a sample research paper. 

Program Requirements:

  • Distribution. All PhD students are required to take courses in three of the following four fields: Ancient, Medieval, Early Modern, Modern and Contemporary. Students must also take coursework in at least two geographical areas (Western, East Asian, South Asian, or African). If a course cuts across boundaries between two areas, it shall count as one field only.
  • Language Requirements. PhD students are required to pass examinations in two languages (normally German, French or Italian) if they have not already done so in the MA program. This requirement must be completed before taking the comprehensive exams. The appropriate languages will be set by the interim supervisor in consultation with the Director of Graduate Studies.
  • PhD Comprehensive Examinations. Candidates are required to take the comprehensive examination (one component of which is chosen from the four areas designated above and one chosen from the dissertation area) within one and a half years (or two and a half years in the case of “direct-entry PhD candidates”).
  • Orientation to Art Historical Research Methods: a workshop designed to familiarize new students with research resources, led by the Department Librarian.

PhD Program Entering with an MA

Program Requirements
The basic requirements include a minimum of four seminars (2.0 FCE), two language exams (unless already completed with the MA), comprehensive examinations and dissertation reading course (1.0 FCE; credit/no credit), a comprehensive and dissertation-area exam, a colloquium presentation and a dissertation. One of these seminars must be FAH1001H: Methods in Art History (unless an exception has been made by the Director of Graduate Studies). You will be expected to maintain an A- average in your course work and complete your language exams in a timely fashion and before sitting the comprehensive exams; in addition, your progress will be reviewed annually to assure that you have met expectations. Students who fail to make satisfactory progress during the first two years may have their registration terminated. Here is a typical itinerary through the PhD program for a fully-funded student (as we expect all PhD students to be):

  • Year 1: course work; complete all language requirements; study for comprehensive exams.
    All students must complete FAH5000Y: Mandatory Comprehensive Examinations and Dissertation Topic Reading Course (1.0 FCE; credit/no credit) with the student’s interim supervisor to prepare for the comprehensive examinations.
  • Year 2 (Qualifying Year): complete comprehensive exams during fall term; submit dissertation proposal; start dissertation research.
  • Years 3, 4 and 5: dissertation research, writing and a colloquium.

Direct Entry PhD Program

Camille Pissarro, Pont Boieldieu in Rouen, Rainy Weather, 1896, Art Gallery Ontario

Camille Pissarro, Pont Boieldieu in Rouen, Rainy Weather, 1896, Art Gallery Ontario

Program Requirements
This six-year program is designed for students who have graduated with a B.A. in art history or a related humanities major. The basic requirements include a minimum of nine seminars (4.5 Full Course Equivalents [FCE]), two language exams,  a comprehensive examinations and dissertation reading course (1.0 FCE; credit/no credit), a comprehensive and dissertation-area exam, a colloquium presentation, and a dissertation. One of these seminars must be FAH1001H: Methods in Art History (unless an exception has been made by the Director of Graduate Studies). You will be expected to maintain an A- average in your course work and complete your language exams in a timely fashion and before the comprehensive exams. New students should attend Orientation to Art Historical Research Methods: a workshop designed to familiarize new students with research resources, led by the Department Librarian. Your progress will be reviewed annually to assure that you have met expectations. Students who fail to make satisfactory progress during the first three years may have their registration terminated or transferred to the MA program. Here is a typical itinerary through the Direct Entry PhD program:

  • Year 1: course work, completing either 2.5 or 3.0 FCEs; pass the first language exam. All students must complete FAH5000Y: Mandatory Comprehensive Examinations and Dissertation Topic Reading Course (1.0 FCE; credit/no credit) with the student’s interim supervisor to prepare for the comprehensive examinations.
  • Year 2: Complete course work to a total of 4.5 FCEs; pass the second language exam.
  • Year 3: Qualifying Year: complete comprehensive exams; submit dissertation proposal; start dissertation research.
  • Years 4 to 6: dissertation research, writing and a colloquium.

 

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