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Art History Graduate Programs with No GRE Requirement

There are a number of art history graduate programs that don't require students to take the GRE to gain admission. This article provides prospective students with information about a few of these schools, as well as general information about the structure and content of these programs.

Students who would like to obtain a graduate degree in art history may be interested in finding a program that doesn't require the GRE for admission. Below, we will examine art history graduate programs in greater detail by reviewing common course requirements and admission standards while also highlighting three art history schools that don't require the GRE.

Graduate Art History Degree Programs That Don't Require the GRE

Graduate degree programs in art history that don't require the GRE are available at both the master's degree and Ph.D. levels. Both programs typically combine coursework with independent research toward a master's thesis or dissertation, though some master's degree programs also have non-thesis options. Within these art history programs, you'll find many courses that are commonly offered, including the following.

Ancient Art and Archaeology

It is common to find one or more courses that focus on ancient art and archaeology within an art history graduate program. These courses may provide students with a broad overview of ancient art or focus on specific ancient societies, like the Greeks or Etruscans. In art and archaeology courses, students learn about different groups and cultures through the study of various archaeological discoveries as well as information about the discipline of archaeology as a whole.

Museum Studies

Students in art history programs may also be required to take a course that focuses on museum studies, which provides them with an overview of the history of museums, theoretical issues in museum studies, and the role of museums in society. This course could also cover practical issues in museum studies, like curation and collecting, conservation, and exhibit design. In addition, students learn about various programs that museums may plan, like educational programming or fundraising efforts.

Islamic Art

Art history programs often include courses that focus on the history of art from a particular region, culture, or religion, such as Islamic art. In such a course, students may learn about early Islamic architecture and how it developed throughout the centuries. The course may also focus on specific regions where Islamic culture was present and the art scene in those areas, like the art of the Islamic Mediterranean. Students can also learn about various methodological approaches to analyzing and evaluating this type of art.

Renaissance Art

Students in art history programs typically take courses that focus on the art of the Renaissance period. Topics of study can provide a broad perspective that covers the highlights and major developments of this period or focus on artists and artwork produced in various regions during the Renaissance. For example, a Renaissance-focused course may cover Renaissance art in Italy during the 15th and 16th centuries or art that was produced in Northern Europe during the Renaissance. Similar courses may focus more specifically on a particular artist, like Botticelli, and cover his life and development as an artist as well as his portfolio of artwork.

Art Theory, Criticism, and Connoisseurship

It is also common for students to be required to take at least one course that focuses on art history and art criticism and the connoisseurship of art. This course may focus on theories as they apply to various periods of art, like modern and contemporary art, and the theory underlying criticism and connoisseurship. A course focused on connoisseurship also trains students in the art of analyzing pieces of art and commenting on the piece's composition and overall aesthetic for the purposes of art collecting.

Schools with Art History Graduate Programs that Don't Require the GRE

  • The University of Arizona - The University of Arizona offers an accelerated Master of Arts in Art History program that does not require applicants to submit GRE results to be considered for admission. This program is designed for students who have completed an undergraduate art or art history degree at the same university, which allows them to complete the graduate curricula in 12 months.
  • The University of New Mexico - Offering a Master of Arts in Art History, the University of New Mexico does not require the GRE as part of its application process. Instead, students are required to include a writing sample, letters of recommendation, letter of intent, resume, transcripts, and application.
  • University of California, Berkeley - Students who apply to the school's art history PhD program do not have to take the GRE, as the admissions committee considers this to be an optional component for applicants who've earned a degree in the US.

Admission Standards for Graduate Programs Art History That Don't Require the GRE

Though some programs in art history do not require that students take the GRE, there are still a number of application components students will need to submit, in addition to making sure they fulfill the prerequisites. Generally, students are required to submit undergraduate transcripts, a completed application form, letters of recommendation, and a writing sample. While prerequisites vary by program, applicants are generally expected to have completed some courses in art, art history, or the humanities in general.

In summary, there are a number of programs available to students who are interested in studying art history at the graduate level but who don't want to take the GRE. These programs prepare students for a variety of career opportunities as well as further study.


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