History and Art History
College of Humanities and Social Sciences

BA in Art History

As an art history major at Mason, you'll investigate works of art to learn about how and why they were made, and about the people who made them. You'll study art as a form of personal expression and a record of its historical moment by understanding not only the artwork's aesthetic qualities, but also the way art influences and is influenced by culture, technology, and economics.

The expertise of our faculty extends to many world regions – the United States, Latin America, Europe, the Mediterranean, South and Southeast Asia, China, and the Islamic world – and over all historical periods. This major has flexible requirements and you will receive individualized attention to help you adapt your art history studies to your interests.

But perhaps the best reason to study art history at George Mason is that the world famous collections of the National Gallery of Art and the Smithsonian Institutions are just 20 miles away. Dedicated teachers and scholars are eager to introduce you to the rich resources of the Washington, DC metropolitan region. We help you find internships at museums and cultural institutions such as the Freer and Sackler Galleries, the Phillips Collection, the Library of Congress and National Archives, and community arts programs, auction houses and commercial art galleries. You can enrich your major by studying abroad in places such as Florence, Rome, and London.

Our students go on to work in museums, arts institutions, and galleries, as well as in government and managerial positions. They also pursue further studies in fields including art history, library science, design technology, historic preservation and fashion.

Want to learn more about life after an art history degree? Take a look at some of our alumni profiles, and, for the broader view, national and regional data on career paths for art history majors.

Opportunities

All students have opportunities to

  • conduct independent research
  • engage in globally-related activities through coursework and language study at Mason and abroad
  • participate in many forms of public service
  • prepare for their future careers through internships, career-focused minors and other college-to-career activities

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art history
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