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History of Art

An exciting and flexible course, concentrated on the study of art and visual culture in the broadest of terms - a degree to help you answer the question of how to see the world!
โŒ›๏ธLast updated: July 5, 2020, 6:28 p.m.

Course Resources

Here are some general resources related to History of Art.


Overview ๐Ÿ”— Summarises the course structure, general introduction, and then year by year break down. Easy to follow and clearly organised

Faculty website ๐Ÿ”— A very helpful introduction to Oxfordโ€™s unique approach to the subject, containing links to the departmentโ€™s social media channels (worth following), and gives you an idea of what tutors and students are up to. Further details of first-year paper options are available here ๐Ÿ”— ๐ŸŒŸ.

Alternative Prospectus ๐Ÿ”— This is an unofficial prospectus put together by the Oxford Student Union; itโ€™s written based on studentsโ€™ perspectives and gives a better sense of what the day-to-day experience as a History of Art student is like, compared to official materials.


Topics within the History of Art course are diverse, including lots of museum-based tutorials and classes. There is also lots of choice regarding what you study and focus on throughout the three years. Course options range from looking at the legacy of Classical Antiquity in art, history and culture; to 15th century culture and society in Flanders and Italy; to Pop Art in the Sixties;to Contemporary East Asian Art.

Course overview YouTube video ๐Ÿ”— ๐ŸŒŸ A useful video if you find yourself asking โ€œWhat is Art History?โ€ and also an indication of the sort of flexible approach Oxford takes to the subject.

Department-produced YouTube video ๐Ÿ”— Students and tutors discuss what its like to study History of Art at Oxford.

Application Resources

Guidance for applicants ๐Ÿ”— ๐ŸŒŸ Very helpful if youโ€™re looking for reading materials or interview preparation. The page breaks things down very clearly, from UCAS applications, to the written work you would need to submit, to information about the interview process, and different selection criteria.

Reading Lists ๐Ÿ”— These are the reading lists for the papers that first-years take. Donโ€™t be intimidated by how long they are; theyโ€™re intended to be worked through over the course of a full academic year, and honestly no one reads everything anyway.

FAQ ๐Ÿ”— ๐ŸŒŸ Some useful answers to common questions about the application process.

InsideUni History of Art interview experiences ๐Ÿ”— ๐ŸŒŸ Current students talk about their interview experience, as well as sharing some tips. Weโ€™re biased, but we think theyโ€™re useful!

Image credit: Gonville and Caius by Akil Hashmi