Art History Major

mary and april in times square Anna Goodloe placing objects in caseIf you are interested primarily in the study of visual expression of the past, rather than the creation of new and innovative artworks, then the Art History major or minor is for you. Choose from:


Broad Liberal Arts Focus

You will learn about the monuments and principal artists of major art periods of the past, as well as gain a broad understanding of the art of the twentieth and twenty-first century. Art History focuses not only on the material aspects of cultural expression, but also how art reflects other aspects of society, including history, politics, religion, science, and technology.

You’ll gain experience looking at art and thinking about the broader issues of the interaction between art and society, and the intersection of economics, religion, and science with visual expression and the built environment.


Learn by doing

All courses are taught through lecture and discussion with full professors (no grad students) and course assignments include exams, research writing, analytical and critical essays, presentations, and discussions.

But you’ll also get your hands dirty in studio courses as well. This combination of historical study and practical application gets you “inside” the art process to develop a deeper understanding of art in all its aspects.


Preparing for Lives That Matter

Under the guidance of your mentors, you will be required to gain practical experience outside of the classroom, such as art conservation, gallery work, museum or gallery internships, archaeological work, or study abroad. Students graduating with this degree have pursued careers in many areas, such as public relations, museum administration, teaching, and a variety of jobs in the corporate and business worlds.

If graduate study is your goal, our graduates pursue work in Art History, Education, Library Studies, Art Conservation, and Arts Administration, to name a few.

See the Art Major & Minor FAQ for more info about the program. You may also be interested in our Visual Communication, Studio Art, or other art minor programs.

For information on events, alumni, faculty creative work and scholarship, and lots more, please visit the Art Department blog.

Incoming Student, Art Department Scholarship information and application

Art History Activities

Welcome to Truman (and Welcome Back!)Welcome to Truman (and Welcome Back!)

August 16, 2017

This week saw the first year students move in, and start their classes.  Sunday is the day of return for sophomores, juniors, and seniors. Classes start on Monday, but several faculty are incorporating the total eclipse into their assignments* and many classes will not actually meet until Wednesday.  Whenever your classes start, Monday, Tuesday, or…Read more Welcome to Truman (and Welcome Back!)

Professor Lindsey Dunnagan’s Collaborative Art ProjectProfessor Lindsey Dunnagan’s Collaborative Art Project

July 26, 2017

Painting professor Lindsey Dunnagan invites people to participate in her new artwork at Paul Artspace Residency in Saint Louis, on August 6th.  She writes: Carrying resentment, anger, or regret can negatively affect mental health and the body.  International Forgiveness Day (August 6th, 2017) provides an opportunity to shed these feelings.  In this interactive project, visitors are invited to Paul…Read more Professor Lindsey Dunnagan’s Collaborative Art Project