Loyola University Maryland

Department of Fine Arts

Art History


The art history curriculum at Loyola offers a broad range of courses. Survey courses are designed to furnish students with a thorough overview of the history of art and architecture, while upper division classes (for which there are usually no prerequisites) provide comprehensive coverage of the Western tradition from classical to contemporary. Courses on Michelangelo, Islamic art, the history of prints, art in the Age of Exploration, African-American art, the Crusades, African art, East Asian Art, and methodology are also offered.

Experiential learning is an important part of the art history program. The instructors use the museums in the area in their courses. Students too take advantage of the rich holdings in museums and galleries in the Baltimore/Washington area and have participated in internships at the Baltimore Museum of Art, Carroll Mansion, Corcoran Gallery of Art,  Evergreen Museum and Library, John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the Walters Art Museum, the Jewish Historical Society, the Maryland Historical Society, and the Smithsonian Institution. Additionally, Loyola’s many study abroad programs allow students to experience works of art and architecture in their original settings.

An art history major is offered. Minors and interdisciplinary majors are also available. Many of our graduates go on to graduate school in art history or museum studies, while others pursue careers in the law, business, arts management, and other fields. Please see our news page for student, alumni, and faculty achievements.

Why Study Art History

What art historians do, primarily, is to explain why a work of art looks as it does. We use both the evidence of the work itself and information from many other disciplines to answer this question. As a result our students learn to be visually attentive, think critically and creatively (across disciplines), research effectively, argue forcefully, and write well. All of these are skills that transfer directly to any professional endeavor.

The other great thing about art history is that a work of art may be approached from many different perspectives. Thus, it is possible for an undergraduate to do original and meaningful scholarship. And our students frequently do.