Major Requirements


HAVC GENERAL MAJOR (Major Advising Sheet)

The history of art and visual culture major requires four lower-division and nine upper-division courses including the satisfactory completion of the senior comprehensive requirement. Students must take courses in each of the different cultural settings to ensure methodological and disciplinary breadth.


Lower-Division Requirements

Four courses, each from a different geographical region listed below.  Two of the four must be completed prior to declaring the major.

10s Africa and its Diaspora

20s Asia and its Diaspora

30s-40s Europe and the Americas

50s Mediterranean

60s Native Americas

70s Oceania and its Diaspora

Note: HAVC 80 may be used to fulfill the lower-division regional breadth requirement for one the following geographical regions: 10 (Africa), 60 (Native Americas), or 70 (Oceania).


Upper-Division Requirements

Nine courses, as follows:

  • HAVC 100A: recommended during the sophomore year.  Because 100A is a prerequisite for other courses, if it is not completed by the end of the junior year, students may have difficulty enrolling in required courses and graduation may be delayed.
  • Courses numbered HAVC 101-191: eight courses required, including a seminar (190s and 191s) to satisfy the senior comprehensive requirement.
  • In completing upper-division coursework, students must complete three upper-division courses (courses 101-191) from three different regions.  Two of those courses must cover the geographical areas not studied at the lower-division level.


Disciplinary Communication (DC) Requirement

Students of every major must satisfy that major's upper-division Disciplinary Communication (DC) requirement. Students in history of art and visual culture meet the DC requirement by completing course 100A.  


Senior Comprehensive Requirement

All seniors must complete one seminar, 190–191, as their “senior exit” course to satisfy the senior comprehensive requirement. Seminars can be taken for senior exit credit only by permission of the instructor. Within the context of this advanced seminar, students will work under the close supervision of their professor to produce a written project that demonstrates a high level of achievement in research, writing, and critical thinking. Students whose performance is outstanding are eligible for honors in the senior comprehensive.


Nine courses, as follows:

• Lower-division: three courses from three different geographical regions;

• Upper-division: six courses (HAVC 100-191) planned in consultation with a faculty adviser.


CONCENTRATION IN RELIGION AND VISUAL CULTURE (Religion and Visual Culture Advising Sheet)

This program is for students who wish to pursue the study of religion in conjunction with studies of visual culture. A student enters the concentration by proposing, in consultation with their faculty adviser, a sequence of upper-division courses to fulfill the religion and visual culture requirements. The declaration of major requirements for the religion and visual culture concentration are the same as those listed in the Declaration of Major section. The faculty adviser for the religion and visual culture concentration is Raoul Birnbaum.

For more information on the Concentration in Religion and Visual Culture, please visit the concentration's page



Beginning Fall 2010, the HAVC major, minor, and concentration requirements changed.  Students declared after Fall 2010 will be following the new requirements.  Students enrolled prior to Fall 2010 can choose to change to the new requirements or remain with the previous requirements.


HAVC requirements (prior to Fall 2010)

Lower-Division Requirements 

 Five courses as follows:

20 (formerly 10D)

  • 80 (formerly 10E)
  • 30 (formerly 10F)
  • Two courses selected from the following: additional lower-division courses; Art 20-40, 70; Theater Art 14, 17, 18; or approved transfer courses

Upper-Division Requirements

Ten 5-credit courses, as follows:

  • 100A Approaches to Visual Culture
  • Numbered 101-189: six courses required
  • Numbered 190-191: two courses required, one of which must satisfy the senior comprehensive requirement (see below).
  • One upper-division course from another discipline, approved by a faculty adviser. This course should complement a student's art history program focus. Courses from the following departments are especially relevant: American Studies, Anthropology, Film and Digital Media, History, Philosophy, Latin American and Latino studies, Literature, Theater Arts, and Feminist Studies. Courses from other departments will also be considered.


  • Breadth: While completing your upper division coursework, you must have covered two different historical eras, two cultural settings, and take classes from at least 4 different HAVC faculty.
  • Senior comprehensive requirement: One of the two seminars (numbered 190-191) taken to meet the requirements for the major must be taken in the senior year to fulfill the senior comprehensive requirement. Within the context of an advanced seminar, this course provides supervised, culminatory work leading to the completion of a major coherent project that meets the standards of the senior level of achievement in art history. A signed petition indicating which course will be used to fulfill this requirement must be on file in the History of Art and Visual Culture office at the beginning of the quarter in which the seminar is taken


Minor Requirements (prior to Fall 2010)

Lower division: three courses

20 (formerly 10D)

80 (formerly 10E)

30 (formerly 10F)

Upper division

Six courses numbered 100-191. Students are encouraged to develop a comprehensive course selection and are advised to meet with the department adviser or a faculty adviser for more information.