Online Art History Degrees

Learn about your options for earning an art history degree online, including program format and availability. Read on for information on degree levels, requirements, and course topics in these programs. Schools offering Art degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Can I Earn an Art History Degree Online?

Most art history degrees are only attainable through traditional, on-campus programs. However, a handful of schools now offer certain degrees in art history fully online. Bear in mind that online programs offered by accredited schools are hard to find, and not all programs are designed the same way. In certain instances, online bachelor's degrees in art history are offered as degree completion programs by the school. This means that enrolling students need to earn a certain number of transferable college credits through another school.

Online Degrees Associate, bachelor's and master's degrees available online
Program Requirements Computer, internet access, e-mail, scheduled class times
Other Requirements High school diploma and minimum GPA for associate's, art related degree and minimum GRE scores for master's
Common Courses Medieval art, history of modern art, history of women in art, teaching art history

How Does Online Learning Work?

Instead of attending class every week, you'll review lessons, submit assignments and take exams via the distance learning site administered by your school. Naturally, you'll need a computer with Internet access to take online courses. You could communicate with your teacher and fellow classmates online utilizing e-mail, chat rooms or message boards. In an online program, there are few scheduled class times; however, there are usually due dates for homework and projects.

What Levels of Education are Offered?

You can earn an associate's or bachelor's degree in art history online or through a campus-based program. Master's degree programs in art history are usually available on-campus. Depending on your level of education, you should expect to spend 1-2 full-time years studying for an associate's, 3-4 years for a bachelor's and 2-3 years for a master's degree.

You'll need a high school diploma or its equivalent to apply for admission to either an associate's or bachelor's degree program. Many schools may require a minimum high school GPA and acceptable scores on the SAT Reasoning Test. Master's degree programs typically require a bachelor's degree, often in art history or a closely related major, and submission of Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores.

What Will I Learn?

The curricula of most art history degree programs are usually designed to not only present historical studies of art produced by various cultures, but also to encourage critical analysis of social, ethical and aesthetic implications made through art. Specific skills taught often include visual observation and research, persuasive writing, critical reasoning and analytical insight.

You should be aware that associate's and bachelor's degree programs typically include a large portion of general education requirements. These classes may have little or nothing to do with art history; examples might include mathematics, English, psychology or chemistry. Core classes are typically taken towards the end of your program, though your schedule may vary depending on the school and degree program you select. Master's degree programs don't usually have general education requirements. Some common core classes offered in an associate's degree program might include:

  • Introduction to art
  • History of women in art
  • African, Oceanic and Native American art
  • Introduction to Islamic art
  • Asian art
  • Contemporary art

Examples of core coursework found in a bachelor's program include:

  • Medieval art
  • Art of the Renaissance
  • African-American art
  • History of modern art
  • Arts of America
  • History of architecture

Some classes often featured in a master's degree program are:

  • Ancient Greek temple art
  • Teaching art history
  • The conservation of art and cultural property
  • Romanesque and Gothic art
  • Ancient Egyptian wall painting

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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