Prospective students holding a master’s degree in art history from VCU or any other accredited institution may apply directly to the doctoral program. In addition to all required VCU graduate application materials, applicants should submit either a completed master’s thesis or two writing samples. A personal interview with the director of graduate studies and the prospective adviser is strongly encouraged prior to submitting an application. Prospective students with master’s degrees in other fields may also apply, although additional course work may be required.
Prospective students who hold only a B.A. in art history or related field also may apply directly to the Ph.D. program but, if admitted, will need to complete the equivalent of the M.A. degree, including the thesis, before beginning Ph.D. course work. In addition to the School of the Arts requirements, applicants should have completed a minimum of 21 undergraduate semester credits in art history with additional work in relevant humanities and social science courses, such as English, philosophy, foreign language and history. Applicants should include with their application an undergraduate research paper in art history to serve as a writing sample. Students whose undergraduate training is less extensive may be admitted provisionally and subsequently attain full graduate status. Upon completion of M.A. course work (generally the beginning of the fourth semester), students wishing to continue in the Ph.D. program must secure the support of the prospective dissertation adviser and submit a formal request to the Graduate Committee. To continue students must maintain a minimum GPA of 3.8. If approved by the Graduate Committee, students will commence their Ph.D. course work the next semester, pending successful completion of the master’s thesis.
Upon completion of the first nine credits of course work (first semester), the student will choose a program adviser, who, together with the departmental chair of the Graduate Committee, will advise the student in establishing a program of study.
For application materials, write to: Director of Graduate Studies, Department of Art History, 922 W. Franklin St., Richmond, VA 23284-3046.