Ph.D. in Art History & Visual Culture

The Ph.D. Program in Art History & Visual Culture is committed to preparing you for advanced research in the global visual cultures of the past and present. The Department recognizes that visual literacy plays an increasingly important role in contemporary society. Art, architecture, mass media (television, video, film, internet), and urbanism all work through reference to visual and spatial conventions. We strive to provide you with the necessary tools to understand objects and archives and with the skills to interpret visual and material culture for the benefit of the broader community. We invite applications from highly qualified students interested in careers in research, teaching, and criticism.

Requirements for a Ph.D.

  • 12 to 15 courses (excluding language courses), of which at least 10 are taken from the Art, Art History & Visual Studies department
  • 2 to 4 courses taken from other departments at Duke
  • Language proficiency in at least two foreign languages
  • Preliminary exam
  • Note the former Ph.D. track in Visual & Media Studies has now been replaced by a new Ph.D. program in Computational Media, Arts & Cultures (CMAC)
  • Also review Ph.D. Program Guidelines attached below