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School of Art History

"Art is not what you see, but what you make others see."
~ Edgar Degas


Art historians have the power to create the context in which future generations view art. Great art historians possess the unique ability to bring the artist of the past alive and make their work relevant in today’s world. Academy of Art University’s Art History program is a one-of-a-kind experience, blending academic inquiry and practice with one of the most extensive studio art and design programs in the world. Throughout this comprehensive program, you will discover the power of art and be able to make a lasting contribution to the cultural landscape.

Academy of Art University celebrates the artistic traditions of the past and encourages emerging artists and scholars to situate themselves in this cultural continuum. Students completing their Art History degree at Academy of Art University will have the opportunity to develop their studio practice while gaining an in-depth knowledge of art history. Studio classes make up approximately half of the major’s curriculum and students will produce a portfolio of work within a specialized area of fine art as well as a written senior thesis.


The School of Art History courses cover a broad range of periods in art history including Greek, Roman, Byzantine, Early Christian, Medieval, Renaissance, Baroque, 18th and 19th Century, American, Modern, and Non-Western art and architecture, and many others. See more.

Schedule of Classes

View Art History course offerings, read course descriptions and plan your schedule. See All Classes »

Study Abroad: Seminar in Europe

The Liberal Arts department offers an exciting opportunity for graduate and undergraduate students to complete Liberal Arts requirements overseas. Study Abroad: Seminar in Europe exposes students to the art of featured regions within the broader context of European history and artistic culture. Students explore the extraordinary architecture of the chosen locality as well as visit the extensive collections of paintings, sculptures, and decorative objects housed in Europe’s world-renowned museums. Countries visited in the past have included France, Spain, Great Britain, Italy, the Netherlands, and the Czech Republic with spotlights on Paris, Rome, London, Prague, Barcelona, and Amsterdam, to name just a few. Learn more


The School of Art History offers an accredited BFA degree and MA degree. Learn More.


Study Art History through our undergraduate programs, continuing art education and pre-college scholarship programs.

Featured Faculty

Learn from top industry professionals in Fine Art and Art History who work to inspire you and develop your individual talents as you pursue your Art History degree. Learn More.


This isn’t your typical Liberal Arts degree. This program allows art history school students access to extensive hands-on art courses and facilities that can’t be found at a Liberal Arts school. Our unique library provides an inspirational place for art history school students to conduct research and engage in collaboration. Learn More.

News & Success Stories

Find your motivation in the successes Academy alumni and faculty members have had. See what took them to the top of the industry and earned the acclaim of their peers. Learn More.

Spring Show Portfolio

See the student work that can truly be called the best of the best from this year's Spring Show. Learn More.

Career Opportunities

Graduates of our Art History degree program can embark on careers such as Gallery Curator, Art Appraiser and many others. See more.

Professional Opportunities

As an Art History student, you will begin your professional career day one. Your Art History degree opens the door to countless opportunities. Learn more.

Program Learning Outcomes

To learn more about the skills you will acquire in this program, view BFA Program Learning Outcomes and MA Program Learning Outcomes.

Contact us at 800.544.2787 (U.S. Only) or 415.274.2200.

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