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The Department offers programs leading to the degrees of Bachelor of Arts, Master of Arts, and Doctor of Philosophy. The goal of the Department is to develop the student's critical understanding of visual culture in both art historical and archaeological contexts.
The faculty is dedicated to providing the undergraduate a rich learning experience in the humanities through an integrated process of engaged looking, critical thinking and writing, effective and clear communication, and active learning. Undergraduates are offered a diverse selection of courses in the art and archaeology of Africa, the Americas, Asia, and Europe. Students are encouraged to supplement their art historical and archaeological studies with courses in other fields, to participate in internships at local museums and galleries, and to take advantage of Maryland's study abroad programs.
The Department offers two graduate degrees: the Master of Arts and the Doctor of Philosophy. The M.A. program is designed to provide a sound knowledge of art history, essential bibliography, and basic methods of research. The Ph.D. program trains scholars to pursue advanced research in more specific areas of study.
In order to enhance the graduate student's curricular choices, the Department maintains an arrangement for course exchange with the Art History Department of The Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore. Advanced students may also participate in seminars given by the prestigious Folger Institute at the Folger Shakespeare Library. To similar effect, the Department is a member of the Washington Area Art History Consortium, uniting the graduate art history departments in the greater Washington area.