Oct 23, 2021  
Graduate Catalog 2009-2011 
Graduate Catalog 2009-2011 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Art History - MA

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The MA in art history, granted by Hunter College since 1952, is a comprehensive program of study intended to give the student a broad background in the history of art as well as an in-depth concentration in a particular area. It leads to enrollment in PhD programs throughout the country and serves as a terminal degree for professional work in museums, galleries, arts organizations and art publishing.

Admission Requirements

Applicants are admitted in both fall and spring semesters. The applicant must have completed 12 credits of undergraduate courses in art history. Reading knowledge of a foreign language (French, German, or Italian) is required. All supporting material requested by the college’s Graduate Admissions Office (GRE score, official transcript, two to three letters of recommendation) as well as the completed on-line application form must be supplied by the application deadlines. Application Deadlines: for fall admission, February 1; for spring admission, October 1.

Requirements for the MA in Art History (30 cr)

1. Course distribution:

Students are required to take

  (Research Methods in Art History), as early as possible in their course of study. At least one course must be taken in art historical theory or historiography, such as ARTH 73400 , or a special topics course directly related to one of these areas. In addition, at least one course must be taken in each of three of the following areas, a, b, c, and d:

  1. Ancient and Medieval Art
  2. Renaissance, Baroque, and 18th-century Art
  3. Modern (19th- or 20th-century) and American Art
  4. Non-Western Art

2. Permission of the graduate adviser:

With the permission of the graduate adviser, candidates for the MA in art history may take up to 6 credits in studio courses or in courses in related areas.

3. Transfer students:

Students may apply for transfer of up to, but no more than, 9 credits from another institution (including the Graduate Center of the City University of New York). Permission to transfer credits is not guaranteed and is considered on a case by case basis.

4. Examinations:

Students must take and pass two examinations before they are permitted to proceed beyond 15 credits. It is recommended that they take these examinations as early in their careers as possible. Both examinations are given once each semester.

Language Examination:

Students must demonstrate their ability to use at least one foreign language as a research tool by passing a written examination in French, German or Italian.

Comprehensive Examination:

Passing a written examination in the history of art is required of all candidates.

5. Mid-program evaluation:

The progress of each student will be reviewed upon the completion of 15 credits. Students will be permitted to proceed if they have demonstrated proficiency in writing and research skills and have passed the comprehensive and foreign language examinations.

6. Incomplete credit:

Students with 6 credits of IN (“Incomplete’’) will not be permitted to register for courses.

7. Master’s thesis:

A thesis is required. The following (Thesis Research) (3 cr) is an elective.

Additional Information

For further information write the Graduate Adviser, Art History Program.


The department functions in two main locations, the main campus at 68th Street and Lexington Avenue and the MFA Studio Building at 450 West 41st Street. The North Building at 68th Street houses the administration and the library and has fully equipped, newly renovated workshops on the 11th floor in photography, graphics, metal, wood, plaster, computer graphics and general painting studios. The basement of Thomas Hunter Hall, the adjacent building, houses the clay workshop. The MFA Building houses the graduate studios, the MFA Gallery, and the graduate photo, wood, metal and ceramics studios.


The Bertha and Karl Leubsdorf Art Gallery, located at the main campus, houses professionally organized exhibits that support the educational programs of the Art Department of Hunter College.

The MFA Gallery at 450 West 41st Street is a 12,000-sq. ft. space renovated by graduate students and faculty. 

The entire exhibition program maximizes student and faculty participation to expand the parameters of the graduate programs in both fine arts and art history.

Scholarships and Travel Grants

The Esther Fish Perry Award for outstanding students is given each year to an MFA student in the final year of study. Enrolled students are encouraged to apply for the William Graf Travel Grant: approximately two awards of up to $1,200 each are given every semester to an MA and MFA student. Tony Smith Awards are given to students at the discretion of faculty.

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