The Ph.D. in Art History program at Rice University trains students for academic research and teaching, curatorial positions, and other careers in the visual arts. Students have the opportunity to learn not only from the faculty members in the Department of Art History, but also from affiliated professors in other disciplines and from the collections and curators of Houston’s museums, who are our educational partners. Working from a range of theoretical positions, our faculty includes specialists in the art of the Americas, Europe, Middle East, and Asia, whose research and teaching covers periods from antiquity to the present. As members of a department defined by a vitally important subject rather than a single methodology, our faculty brings a disciplinary breadth and depth to the study of art.
The Department of Art History’s selective program encourages interdisciplinary coursework and research through collaborative links between the department and its seventeen affiliated faculty who serve as curators in Houston or who teach visual and material culture in other departments at Rice. Our program also benefits from the rich visual culture of Houston. The Menil Collection has exceptional holdings in ancient, Byzantine, African, and modern and contemporary art. The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston has an encyclopedic collection of global art that includes Bayou Bend, with its collection of American decorative art and painting; the Blaffer Collection of Old Master paintings and prints; the Latin American collections and the affiliated International Center for the Art of the Americas; and an outstanding collection of modern and contemporary works.
The Fondren Library at Rice University has over five million books, including more than 150,000 titles in art history. The library contains an additional 275 art and art history journals, plus access to online journals. Furthermore, the nearby Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, houses another 85,000 titles, and the Menil Collection several thousand more. The Department's Visual Resources Center has a legacy collection of over 450,000 slides, an ever growing collection of digital images, and offers access to ARTSTOR and Archivision licensed digital image collections.
Generous funding for students is available. The Department of Art History offers tuition waivers and stipends, as well as funding for travel to libraries, archives, museums, and conferences in the U.S. or abroad.
Fellowships are also available to enable students to work closely with curators at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston and the Menil Collection. Graduate students at Rice also have the opportunity to gain experience as teaching assistants.
In addition to departmental, university and local research and teaching opportunities, our graduate students are successful in gaining major national and international fellowships and positions, including dissertation research and writing fellowships from the Fulbright-Hayes Program, the Social Sciences Research Council, the American Council of Learned Societies, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the Terra Foundation for American Art; internships and fellowships at, for example, the Museo Nacional del Prado, the Harvard Art Museums, and the Museum of Fine Arts-Houston (Mellon Director's Initiative Fellowship); and regular participation on panels at national and international conferences.
Rice University offers an exciting intellectual community with outstanding music recitals at the Shepherd School of Music, lectures by world-renowned scholars, and innovative research centers including the Humanities Research Center, the Center for the Study of Women, Gender, and Sexuality, and the Chao Center for Asian Studies. The highly acclaimed Rice University Art Gallery offers several contemporary installations each year. The Department of Art History maintains significant links with the museums of Houston, including a shared lecture series with the Menil Collection and a joint postdoctoral program with the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston.
Advising and Administration
Graduate Program Administrator
firstname.lastname@example.org | 713-348-2078 | 110 Rayzor Hall (MS-36)
Contact Ms. Galley with general questions regarding admission to the program, completion and documentation of program requirements, and financial matters concerning graduate students.
Director of Graduate Studies
Nina J. Cullinan Professor of Art and Art History, Professor of Art History
email@example.com | 713-348-3464 | 113 Herring Hall
Contact Prof. Manca for advice on Art History courses, information about major requirements, transfer credits, etc.
All prospective applicants should note that the Department of Art History offers a Ph.D. program only and does not consider applicants pursuing a terminal Master’s degree.
If you have any questions or need more information regarding the application, please contact Humanities Graduate Admissions at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Department of Art History's application deadline for the Fall semester is January 16th. Late applications will not be considered.
NOTE: Many transcripts, recommendation letters and GRE/TOEFL scores arrive after our deadline of January 16th; this results in incomplete applications. Incomplete applications will not be considered for admission. It is the applicant’s obligation to check with our office to ensure all materials have been received and that the application file is complete.
We admit only once a year, in the fall semester. To be considered for admission to the upcoming academic year, we must have the applicant's completed file in our office by January 16th.
- APPLICATION FORM: You may apply online. There is an $85 non-refundable application fee (check or money order, US currency only).
- CURRICULUM VITAE (CV): A CV, which includes a comprehensive listing of professional history including employment, academic credentials, publications, and contribution or significant achievements, as well as contact information should be uploaded to the online application.
STATEMENT OF PURPOSE: A Statement of Purpose (1-2 pages), indicating objectives in undertaking graduate study, designs in achieving the Art History Ph.D., and strengths and weaknesses in the applicant’s chosen field should be uploaded to the online application. The statement should briefly describe any research projects or independent research which influenced the applicant’s career choice and desire to pursue graduate studies, as well as discuss any reasons for applying to Rice and/or the department specifically, such as interest in a particular faculty member’s work.
TRANSCRIPTS: Transcripts from previous colleges and universities attended should be uploaded to the online application. Initially, unofficial transcripts may be uploaded, but official transcripts will be requested upon admission to our program and can be mailed to the address below.
RECOMMENDATION LETTERS: Four letters of recommendation addressing the applicant’s personal and scholastic qualities are required, preferably from professors in the applicant’s major field. When filling out the application, applicants will list recommenders’ names and email addresses; upon submission of the application, recommenders will receive an automated email with instructions on how to log into the application system and upload their letters of recommendation. We advise applicants to make sure their recommenders know to expect this email and give them sufficient notice to write the letter.
- GRE/TOEFL – OFFICIAL: GRE/TOEFL scores should be sent by the Educational Testing Service to the address listed below. The subject test is not required, only the general portion of the GRE. When taking the GRE, please indicate the School Code: 6609 and Department Code: 2301. Photocopies are not acceptable.
- RESEARCH PAPER: A research paper (15-25 pages), preferably on the applicant’s area of interest, should be uploaded to the application system.
Please note: If a different name appears on a transcript or test report, please indicate a cross-reference if you are applying in your maiden name or another name. Also, we recommend that you email email@example.com at least one week prior to the application deadline to check on the status of your application.
Any materials submitted by mail should be sent to:
Department of Art History
6100 Main Street, MS-21
Houston, TX 77005
Inquiries regarding the application process should be directed to:
Humanities Graduate Admissions: firstname.lastname@example.org
Program Guidelines as of Academic Year 2016-2017
The Graduate Program in Art History at Rice University is overseen by the Graduate Committee in Art History, which is supervised by the Director of Graduate Studies (DGS).
The program requires two years of course work, the demonstration of two language proficiencies in addition to English, the completion of a graduate research paper and oral and written qualifying exams, a dissertation prospectus and the successful completion of a doctoral dissertation. We accept only students interested in a doctoral program, but an MA degree is automatically granted upon the successful completion of the first two years of course work and the graduate research paper. A terminal master’s degree is granted for students at that point who do not continue in the program. Students are in most cases expected to complete their doctoral degree by the end of the sixth year.
The department also offers a Museum Professionals track (MP), which is designed for students who currently hold professional appointments at local museums. All the requirements for the number of courses taken, language proficiency, graduate research paper, oral and written qualifying exams and dissertation prospectus and doctoral dissertation are the same as those for all other Ph.D. students. However, graduate students who continue to hold their position at museums have a longer timetable of seven years.
All students entering the program in the first year must complete the full curriculum regardless of the degrees they have earned before admission to Rice.
All incoming students will be assigned to the DGS for the first semester. The DGS will assist in explaining departmental guidelines, choosing courses, and beginning to strategize about major and minor fields. All students will then identify a permanent advisor in their major field by the end of the first week of classes in the Spring semester of their first year. After this point, a student may change his or her advisor at any time, with the agreement of the new advisor. Primary and secondary fields are chosen by the student in consultation with his or her advisor and with a view towards the requirements of the job market. Students should identify their primary and secondary fields by the end of the second year (end of third year for MP).
* In addition to being in agreement with the regulations stated in this handbook, students must also be in agreement with the General Announcement and the Code of Conduct (http://ga.rice.edu). In case there is conflicting information, university-wide regulations take precedence over department-wide regulations, which take precedence over research group-wide regulations. If in doubt, students should seek help first at the department level (director of graduate studies, advisor, and/or department chair) and then at the central administration level (office of graduate and postdoctoral studies). Rice encourages any student who has experienced an incident of sexual, relationship, or other interpersonal violence, harassment or gender discrimination to seek support. There are many options available both on and off campus for all graduate students, regardless of whether the perpetrator was a fellow student, a staff or faculty member, or someone not affiliated with the university. Students should be aware when seeking support on campus that most employees are required by Title IX to disclose all incidents of non-consensual interpersonal behaviors to Title IX professionals on campus who can act to support that student and meet their needs. The therapists at the Rice Counseling Center and the doctors at Student Health Services are confidential, meaning that Rice will not be informed about the incident if a student discloses to one of these Rice staff members.
Rice prioritizes student privacy and safety, and only shares disclosed information on a need-to-know basis. If you are in need of assistance or simply would like to talk to someone, please call Rice Wellbeing and Counseling Center, which includes Title IX Support: 3311/ (713) 348-3311 Policies, including Sexual Misconduct Policy and Student Code of Conduct, and more information regarding Title IX can be found at safe.rice.edu.
Requirements for Ph.D. Degree
Satisfactory completion of at least 36 hours (12 courses) of graduate coursework (500 or 600 level) is required. One of the courses will be Hart 590 (Methods in Art History), to be taken in the Fall of the first year. At least three (3) of the courses taken must be in an area judged by the faculty advisor to be outside the student’s main field of interest and will constitute a secondary field. At least half of the classes taken must be seminars. Because jobs in the field often call for teaching expertise in more than one area, students are encouraged to acquire breadth of knowledge in both their coursework and the topics covered in the qualifying exams. Because the dissertation committee requires the inclusion of one member from a department at Rice outside of art history, students are also encouraged to take at least one course in an outside department during the first two years. Up to three graduate courses may be taken outside the department, as approved by the student’s advisor. Independent Study courses (HART 503 or 504) should have their format and expectations discussed between student and course supervisor and established by the second week of the term. Hart 600 and 601 do not count toward the 36 hours of graduate coursework.
Reading knowledge of at least two languages other than English is required. These languages must be relevant to research in the student’s field of study and must be approved by the student’s advisor. A third language may also be strongly recommended by the student’s advisor. The first language proficiency exam must be taken by December 1 of the first semester of the first year and the second exam taken by May 1 of the second semester of the second year. If the student fails either exam, s/he may retake them no more than two additional times. The first exam must be passed within a year of the original exam. The second exam must be passed by September 15 of the third year. If necessary, students are strongly encouraged to begin study of their second language at the start of their first year. For MP students, the same rules apply but the timeline is adjusted. The First language exam must be taken by May of the 1st year. The second must be taken by May 1 of the third year. If failed on the first attempt, the second exam must be passed by September 15 of the fourth year.
For language exams, the student’s advisor will select a text in the target language that is close to the student’s interest. The student will not be told ahead of time the book from which the selection will be taken. The student will have two hours to translate approximately 500 words. The student may use a dictionary (but not an online dictionary or translation program). The completed exam should be returned to the department administrator at the end of the time period. The exam will then be given to two members of the art history faculty to be graded according to a rubric, which is available for students to consult before the exam. Exams will be graded and the results reported to the student within two weeks, except if the exam is taken over the Summer.
Tuition waivers cover all language courses taken in the Fall and Spring terms at Rice University. Students are strongly encouraged to take language courses during the regular academic year. Tuition waivers do not cover courses taken during the Summer term either at Rice University or the School of Continuing Studies. Students may apply for funding directly to the department, but partial or full funding is not guaranteed.
Some languages are not taught at Rice and are necessary for a student’s field of research. In this case, a student may petition the department for full or partial funding for the study of a language elsewhere. We will make every effort to support study of languages not taught at Rice. Requests for Summer language study are due March 15.
Graduate Research Paper
In the Spring term of their second year (Fall term of third year for MP), students are required to complete a substantial research paper (HART 503). By the end of Fall term of the second year (Spring for MP), the student should submit a topic and preliminary bibliography for the graduate research paper to his or her advisor. The purpose of the paper is to demonstrate research skills in art history including the ability to develop a convincing argument, to use visual evidence, to undertake research in foreign languages where applicable, and to develop an original thesis. The paper topic should be the result of careful thought and planning between student and advisor. It should not be thought of as a preliminary version of a dissertation, but rather an opportunity to explore in depth a topic of interest, perhaps related to course work. It need not, however, be outside of the student’s primary field of study and may end up being related to an eventual dissertation topic. The topic of the paper, and a preliminary bibliography should be discussed before the end of the first year (during second year for MP).
The length of the graduate research paper should in most cases range from approximately 30 to 50 pages plus endnotes and illustrations. The paper will be graded by the faculty supervising the project in consultation with a second reader. The paper need not be supervised by the student's primary advisor. In the case that the supervisor of the paper is not the student's primary advisor, however, the advisor should be the second reader. If the supervisor of the paper is the primary advisor, then student and advisor will consult in regard to a second reader. The paper is due no later than the last day of classes of the Spring semester of the second year (last day of classes in the Fall semester of the third year for MP).
Teaching Assistantships (not applicable to MP students who continue to hold a position at a museum)
All students in their third year will serve as Teaching Assistants (TAs). TAs will be assigned to courses based on course enrollments and numbers of TAs available, but in each semester some TAs will be assigned to HART 101 or 102. In some semesters, a TA may be assigned to a different course, based on interest/experience, combined with course size and professors’ needs. In both cases, the focus will be on a collaborative process in which TAs are an integral part of the department’s teaching, and will be supervised and trained in ways which will help in the development of their pedagogical skills.
For HART 101 and 102, TAs will attend all lectures, grade coursework and lead weekly discussion sections. Because 101 and 102 are team-taught, TA’s will have the opportunity to work with as many as four different faculty members over the academic year. In each case, faculty will meet with the TAs at the beginning of the course to discuss expectations, standards and strategies. Each faculty member will also observe at least one of the sessions taught by each TA. This will be accompanied by frequent contact over the semester during which time issues, strategies and content can be discussed. The role of the TA’s in courses other than HART 101 and 102 may vary in detail, but the standards remain the same: they will gain experience by either leading discussion sections or taking over class sessions during the semester and the TA will be observed and given feedback. Also, as with 101 or 102, the professor will meet with the TA at the beginning of the semester and frequently over its course to discuss progress, issues, and ideas for the classroom.
The doctoral qualifying exams (Hart 600) consist of two written exams, followed by an oral exam. Preparation of the qualifying exams will take place during the Summer between the second and third years and throughout the third year (Spring of third year and throughout the fourth year for MP). The written and oral exams must be completed no later than March 25 in the Spring semester of the third year. The exams will cover topics in the student’s major field of study and secondary field, as agreed upon with the student’s advisor and based on the student’s interests and intended area of study for the doctoral dissertation. Passing the qualifying exams is necessary for continuation in the program into the dissertation phase.
The examining committee, chosen by the student in consultation with her/his advisor will consist of three persons; the principal field examiner, the secondary field examiner and one other faculty member. One faculty member from outside the department is permitted. The major field will be based on a bibliography of no more than nine (9) pages. The minor field bibliography will be no more than five (5) pages. Both bibliographies will be drawn up by the student in consultation with the respective field examiners and will be agreed upon by May 31st of the Spring semester of the student’s second year.
The written exam in the major field will be eight (8) hours in length and will take place on a day chosen by the student and agreed to by the advisor, from 9AM – 5PM. The exam will be open-book and students will answer two (2) questions out of four (4) choices. The written exam in the minor field will be 3 ½ hours in length (time of day not specified). It will also be open book and students will answer one (1) question out of two (2) choices. Student and examiners should work together to determine the scope and nature of the exams. The written exam may, but need not necessarily include the identification and discussion of known or unknown images. The oral exam will be attended by the entire committee. Approximately two-thirds of the oral exam will be devoted to the major field, and the rest to the minor field. The oral exam may also, but need not necessarily include specific images. These three exams will be administered over a period of no more than fifteen (15) days.
At the conclusion of the oral exam the student will be asked to leave the room while faculty consult. Upon returning the student will be informed of the results of all three exams, for which they will be awarded a pass, a pass with distinction, or a fail. Should the student fail any part of the exams, he/she will have until May 31 to retake the failed portion. If the student does not pass at this time, he/she will be dismissed from the program.
In the Spring semester of the third year (fourth year for MP), students will enroll in Hart 601, and prepare a prospectus of 10-12 pages plus bibliography on their dissertation topic to be presented to their advisor and dissertation committee. Students are encouraged to think of the dissertation prospectus as a base document for their dissertation research and writing phases. It should clearly present dissertation topic, significance and contribution to the field(s), historical context, methodology and archival sources, and preliminary structure. Format details should be agreed upon with the dissertation advisor.
The dissertation committee should be composed of three members approved by the department’s graduate committee: the committee will be the student’s departmental advisor, who must be a tenure or tenure-track member of the Rice art history faculty; the second member must also come from within the department; and the third reader must be a tenured or tenure-track faculty member from a different department at Rice. Additional members may be added to committee, either from the department of art history, or outside it, including members of the faculty at other universities or scholars at other institutions such as museums, but these cannot replace any of the three required members.
The student will give an oral presentation of their proposed dissertation topic to the advisor, dissertation committee, art history faculty and fellow graduate students during the last week of the Spring term of their third year. Before the oral presentation the dissertation committee must have received a draft of the prospectus. The student will submit the final version of the prospectus to the dissertation committee on May 10. The deadline for prospectus approval by the dissertation committee is May 31st. The final version of the prospectus will be placed in the student’s file.
Once the student has passed the doctoral exams and had the prospectus approved by the dissertation committee, the student must file a petition for approval of candidacy for the Ph.D. with the Graduate Office. For filing procedure and deadline information see http://graduate.rice.edu/candidacy. Filing for Ph.D. candidacy must be done according to the students’ own time boundary deadlines, which are available to them in Esther. The term “Ph.D. candidate” refers only to persons so certified by the Graduate Office. The university requires that students pursuing the Ph.D. must be approved for candidacy before the beginning of the ninth semester of their residency at Rice. After the dissertation topic has been approved, it must be registered with the College Art Association. This will be kept on file at the CAA and published yearly in the June issue of the Art Bulletin, thereby alerting the art historical public that a given subject has been chosen for a dissertation.
A dissertation represents independent and original research, equivalent to a publishable book, which makes a significant contribution to the current body of knowledge in the field. It must show a mastery of the literature in the subject, be written in acceptable literary style, and conform to the standards outlined on the Rice University Graduate School web site. Dissertations may be written on any subject that falls within the supervisory competence of a permanent member of the department.
Development of the Dissertation
The dissertation advisor has primary responsibility for directing all phases of the dissertation after the proposal has been approved. The candidate should arrange for regular meetings with the advisor to review progress. Candidates are responsible for establishing a schedule for dissertation completion and review, and for keeping the members of their committee informed about the progress of their work. The members of the committee, in turn, should review the dissertation in a timely manner, approving a preliminary form of the thesis before scheduling the oral defense.
Defense and Submission of the Dissertation
When the advisor, in consultation with other members of the committee, feels that the dissertation has reached a final stage, a date for the oral examination in defense of the dissertation may be set. It is intended to be an examination of a completed work and should be scheduled by the student only after consultation with the advisor, who agrees that the dissertation is essentially completed and ready to be defended. All members of the thesis committee must be present for the oral defense.
The defense will consist of a presentation by the student of the work (usually twenty to thirty minutes in length), followed by questions and general discussion. The total length of the oral defense and the subject matter on which the candidate is questioned are left to the judgment of the committee. Approval requires a unanimous vote. In the event of a split vote, the dean of the Graduate School determines the review procedure after consultation with the student, the department chair (or the school dean), and the committee.
The oral defense must be announced at least two weeks in advance. The announcement is to be submitted to the Office of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies by entering the information into the Graduate Students Thesis Defense Announcement form at http://events.rice.edu/rgs. At least one copy of the dissertation must be available in the departmental office not less than two calendar weeks prior to the date of the oral defense.
A candidate must be enrolled in the semester in which his or her oral defense is held. Students who defend during the summer must enroll in the summer session of classes. For the purpose of the oral defense only, enrollment in a semester is considered valid through the Friday of the first week of class of the following semester. Students passing the oral defense on or before the end of the first week of classes of any semester do not have to register for that or any subsequent semester even though they may be continuing to make minor revisions to the final copy of their dissertation.
Should a candidate fail, the committee chair may schedule a second defense. Students who fail a second time will be dismissed from the university. Students must upload a copy of their approval of candidacy form, signed by the dissertation committee signifying successful defense of the dissertation, to the thesis submission website within one week after the oral defense. The original approval of candidacy form must be turned in when the dissertation is submitted.
Candidates who successfully passed the oral defense of the dissertation must submit the dissertation online and two signed copies of the dissertation’s title page to the Office of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies no later than six months from the date of the defense. Instructions for dissertation submission and guidelines for formatting are available at: graduate.rice.edu/thesis. If the dissertation is not submitted by the end of the six-month period, the “pass” will be revoked and an additional oral defense will need to be scheduled. Applications for an extension without reexamination must be made by the candidate with the unanimous support of the dissertation committee, endorsed by the school dean, and approved by the Office of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies. Extensions of this six-month period for completion without reexamination will be granted only in rare circumstances.
The dissertation is permanently preserved in the library. Students submitting a dissertation for the PhD must fill out a Survey of Earned Doctorates form. All students submitting dissertations must complete a University Microfilms International (UMI) contract. Students must pay their fees for microfilming and binding their theses to the Cashier before submitting the two copies to the Office of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies for approval.
A mentored teaching program will be available, by application, to in-residence students in their fifth and sixth year. This will represent an opportunity to build on the experience of the third year while giving students a means to build their teaching resume during the last year of the dissertation and as they begin to go onto the job market, or prepare to go on it the next year. In this scenario, Advanced students could apply in the Spring semester of their fifth year to teach a class with a professor in their sixth year. Applications are due Oct. 15 for courses to be taught in the Fall, and March 15 for courses taught in the Spring. Students will work with the professor, sharing equal responsibility for every aspect of the course, including syllabus development, teaching and grading evaluation. This would build on the TA experience by offering mentoring and feedback but now within the context of a peer relationship. The mentored teaching program is not open to museum professionals.
Evaluation of Student Progress
At the end of every year, the DGS will write a letter evaluating each student’s progress through the program. That letter will be placed in the student’s file and given to the student and his/her advisor.
First Year Review: Copies of all papers, evaluations of oral reports, and written exams for course work in the first year will be placed in the student’s file. At the end of the Spring term of the first year and after close evaluation of written and oral work, the advisor and/or DGS will meet with the student to discuss his or her progress through the program. Any problems regarding the student’s performance will be discussed at this time. A student whose GPA falls below 3.0 or B or who has not demonstrated satisfactory critical thinking, writing, and research skills will be given an unsatisfactory report. Improvement must be demonstrated by the end of the third semester in the program or the student may be dismissed after re-evaluation at the end of the second year. For museum professionals, first and second year reviews will follow the same process.
Second Year Review (Museum Professionals’ Third Year Review): Copies of all papers, evaluations of oral reports, and written exams for course work in the second year will be placed in the student’s file. Students must maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 throughout their second year. At the end of the fourth semester (April of the second year) the student will meet with the DGS and/or advisor to discuss his/her progress through the program. If the cumulative GPA falls below 3.0 or the student does not demonstrate critical thinking, research and writing skills, the student may receive an unsatisfactory evaluation. The case will be discussed by the graduate committee and the student may be dismissed. A letter of dismissal would be issued by the end of May. Upon successful completion of all course work, language exams and the graduate research paper (Hart 503 and Hart 504) the student will be given a terminal Master’s Degree. A continuation of the student in the program must be supported by both the student’s advisor and the graduate committee.
All students in the program will be evaluated at the end of each Spring term thereafter and awarded a satisfactory or unsatisfactory. Satisfactory evaluation is based on the student’s successful completion of the requirements of a given year according to the student’s advisor’s assessment in consultation with the dissertation committee.
Once candidacy has been granted it is important for the student to keep his/her advisor informed about his/her dissertation progress. Each Spring the advisor will submit a report to the DGS and the DGS will write an evaluation of the student’s progress. If a student receives an unsatisfactory, he/she will have one semester to improve or face dismissal. The Department of Art History follows the process established by the Graduate School for handling petitions, appeals, and grievances. See https://graduate.rice.edu/dismissals/
Recommended Timetable as of Academic Year 2016-2017
Year 1: Six (6) courses taken (three in the Fall and three in the Spring) including Hart 590 (Methods) in the Fall. First language exam taken by December 1 of the Fall semester. By the end of the first week of the Spring semester, students should have identified an advisor who has agreed to work with him or her. Museum internships are discouraged until the third year although museum based projects may count as an independent study course with approval of the faculty advisor.
Year 2: Six (6) courses taken (three in the Fall and three in the Spring) including HART 503 (graduate research paper) in the Spring. By the end of Fall, the student should submit a topic and preliminary bibliography for the Graduate Research paper to his or her advisor. Students must take a second language exam by May 1. Upon the successful completion of all course work, language exams and graduate research paper, the student will be awarded an MA degree.
Year 3: All students serve as teaching assistants for both semesters. In the Fall, the students will take Hart 600 (independent study in preparation for qualifying exams). In the Spring, the students will take Hart 601 (independent study to prepare qualifying exams and dissertation prospectus). Qualifying exams are to be taken by March 25. Students will present their dissertation prospectus publicly on the last week of classes of the Spring semester and submit the final version to their dissertation committee by May 10. Students must file for Ph.D. candidacy once their prospectus is approved by their dissertation committee.
Year 4: Students will be engaged in research and writing dissertation (enrolled in Hart 800 each semester until the completion of dissertation). Students may ask to serve as teaching assistants in the School of Architecture, research assistants, or museum interns or fellows for one or both semesters. Students are encouraged to apply for outside funding for dissertation research. If s/he receives outside funding for the fifth year, the student may defer the stipend from Rice until the sixth year. Residency is not required.
Year 5: Students will be engaged in research and writing dissertation (enrolled in Hart 800 each semester until the completion of dissertation). In-resident students may apply to teach in the mentored teaching program, as well as other teaching opportunities on campus. Residency not required.
Year 6: Students will complete and defend dissertation (enrolled in Hart 800 each semester until the completion of dissertation). In-resident students may apply to teach in the mentored teaching program, as well as other teaching opportunities on campus. Residency not required.
Recommended Timetable For Museum Professionals as of Academic Year 2016-2017
Year 1: Four (4) courses taken (two in the Fall and two in the Spring) including Hart 590 (Methods) in the Fall. By the end of the first semester of the Spring semester students should have identified an advisor who has agreed to work with him or her. First language exam taken by May 1.
Year 2: Four (4) courses taken (two in the Fall and two in the Spring). By the end of Spring term, the student should submit a topic and bibliography for the Graduate Research paper to his/her advisor.
Year 3: Three (3) courses taken (two in the Fall, including Hart 503 [graduate research paper], and one in the Spring). In the Spring, students will also enroll in Hart 600 (Independent Study in Preparation for Qualifying Exams) in the Spring. Students must take a second language exam by May 1 of the third year. Upon the successful completion of all course work, language exams and graduate research paper, the student will be awarded an MA degree.
Year 4: One (1) course taken in the Fall. Students are also expected to continue study and preparation for qualifying exams and dissertation prospectus. Upon the successful completion of all course work, language exams and graduate research paper, the student will be awarded an MA degree. In the Spring students will enroll in Hart 601 (independent study to prepare qualifying exams and dissertation prospectus). Qualifying exams are to be taken by March 25. Students will present their dissertation prospectus publicly on the last week of classes of the Spring semester and submit the final version to their dissertation committee by May 10. Students must file for Ph.D. candidacy once their prospectus is approved by their dissertation committee.
Year 5: Students will be engaged in research and writing dissertation (enrolled in Hart 800 each semester until the completion of dissertation). Students may ask to serve as associate instructors, teaching assistants in the School of Architecture, research assistants, or museum interns or fellows for one or both semesters. Students are encouraged to apply for outside funding for dissertation research. Residency is not required.
Year 6: Students will be engaged in research and writing dissertation (enrolled in Hart 800 each semester until the completion of dissertation). Residency not required. Students who are prepared to may complete and defend dissertation in this year.
Year 7: Students will complete and defend dissertation (enrolled in Hart 800 each semester until the completion of dissertation). In-resident students may apply to teach in the Mentored Teaching Program, as well as other teaching opportunities on campus. Residency not required.
Tuition Waivers & Stipends
All full-time graduate students (with the exception of Museum Professionals) will receive a yearly stipend of $26,000 along with a full tuition waver for 5 years. In addition, After the first 5 years there are opportunities for teaching and research fellowships through the department and university and so long as the minimum level of stipend support is met (Fellowships of $7,500; Research Assistantship of $7,500; Teaching Assistantship of $5,000) students will continue to qualify for a tuition waiver. Tuition waivers are not available for summer terms. In-resident students may apply to teach in the mentored teaching program, as well as other teaching opportunities on campus.
For more information on graduate student funding opportunities from within the department and university, see the Prizes and Awards page.
Program Guidelines 2016-2017
|September 1||Reports due to DGS from recipients of Conference and Exhibition Travel funds, Brown Foundation and Minter Research Assistantships, Summer Research Fellowships, Brown Foundation Dissertation Research Awards, and MFAH Camfield Fellowship.|
|October 5||Deadline for ABD students’ submission of proposal for departmental nomination to CASVA and Dedalus Fellowships.|
|October 15||Applications due for Conference and Exhibition Travel funds, Brown Foundation Mentored Teaching Awards, Brown Foundation and Minter Research Assistantships, and Graduate Student Symposium funding.|
|December 1||Last day for first-year students (except Museum Professionals) to take first language exam.|
|January 20||Deadline for all first-year students to identify their faculty advisor.|
|March 15||Applications due for Brown Foundation Dissertation Research and Writing Awards, Summer Research, Summer Intensive Language Study, Conference and Exhibition Travel funds, Brown Foundation Mentored Teaching Awards, Brown Foundation and Minter Research Assistantships, Graduate Student Symposium funding, and MFAH Camfield Fellowship.|
|March 25||Last day for all third-year students (Museum Professionals fourth-year students) to complete their Qualifying Exams.|
|April 22||Last day for all second-year students (Museum Professionals third year students) to turn in final version of Graduate Research paper.
Last day for Museum Professionals first-year students to pass their first language exam.
Academic Year's last week of classes
Third-year students’ (Museum Professionals fourth-year students’) oral presentation of Dissertation Prospectus.
Last day for all second-year students (museum professionals third-year students) to take their second language exam.
Deadline for third-year students (Museum Professionals fourth-year students) to submit final version of Prospectus to dissertation committee.
Last day for third-year students (Museum Professionals fourth-year students) who have failed any portion of Qualifying Exams to retake that portion
* This list does not include university-wide awards and fellowships. For deadline information on the Wagoner, Humanities Research Center, Menil, Jameson and Asia Society Fellowships and the Fondren Library Research Competition Award, please refer to individual Websites and the department’s Graduate Program - Awards and Fellowships webpage.
Conversations and Lectures in Honor of Katherine T. Brown
Conversations in Art History
To facilitate, explore and encourage scholarly traffic across traditional art historical boundaries. There are two formats for the Conversations in Art History: the Rice Distinguished Seminar in Art History and the Master Classes.
Rice Distinguished Seminar in Art History
Each year a renowned scholar with a recent publication that expands or challenges previously held ideas in art history is invited by the art history department to visit Rice and discuss his/her work. Ideally, this work transcends individual fields and approaches and is relevant to all art historians. This publication is made available to all faculty and graduate students ahead of time. Speaker may make introductory comments followed by questions, responses and extended discussion with faculty and graduate students.
2013-2014: Alexander Nagel (New York University), author of Medieval Modern. Art out of Time, Thames & Hudson, 2012.
2015-2016: Griselda Pollock (University of Leeds), author of After-affects/After-images: Trauma and Aesthetic Transformation in the Virtual Feminist Museum, Manchester University Press, 2013.
Two annual Master Classes are held to encourage an informal conversation between graduate students and faculty members concerning individual fields in art history. A dinner at a faculty member’s house with graduate students is followed by a presentation and discussion about issues, methodologies, and questions, in that faculty member’s field of expertise.
Master Classes for 2013-2014
- Fall 2013: Greek and Roman Art of the Ancient Mediterranean, Professor John Hopkins
- Spring 2014: Art and Architecture of Modern Latin America, Professor Fabiola López-Durán.
Master Classes for 2014-2015
- Fall 2014: Early Modern Art, Professor Diane Wolfthal
- Spring 2015: Nineteenth Century European Painting, Professor Leo Costello
Master Classes for 2015-2016
- Fall 2015: Medieval Art and Architecture, Professor Linda Neagley
- Spring 2015: Modern European Art, Professor Gordon Hughes
Lectures in Art History
There are two formats for Lectures in Art History: Lectures by Invited Speakers and Brown Bag Lectures.
Faculty frequently invite outside speakers whose work is relevant to courses they are offering or whose research and publications are important. Speakers may address individual classes or may give a public lecture or both. Course lectures are open to students in class and invited faculty. Public lectures are open to art history faculty, Rice faculty, graduate and undergraduate students and the public. Graduate students are encouraged to attend all public lectures in art history.
Invited Speakers for 2015-2016
- Jane Gillies, Museum of Fine Arts Houston
- Ingrid Seyb, Museum of Fine Arts Houston
- Isabel Herault, French architect (France)
- Maria Fernanda Cardoso, Colombian artist (Australia)
- Magdalena Fernandez, Venezuelan artist
- David Getsy, The School of the Art Institute of Chicago
- Hashim Sarkis, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
- Gustavo Diaz, Argentinian artist Valerie Hanson, Yale University
- Phoebe Segal, Museum of Fine Arts Boston
- David Saunders, The J. Paul Getty Museum
- Betsy Bryan, Johns Hopkins University
Invited Speakers for 2016-2017
- Kathryn Rudy, University of St. Andrews (Scotland)
- Kathryn Kahn, Northern Illinois University
- Sean Nesselrode, New York University
- Dorota Biczel, University of Texas at Austin
- Nikki Moore, Rice University
- Jennifer Stob, Texas State University
- John Corbett, School of the Art Institute of Chicago
- Travis Diehl, Otis College of Art and Design
- Joshua Shannon, University of Maryland, College Park
- Stephennie Mulder, University of Texas at Austin
- Elena Shtromberg, University of Utah
- Gavin Delahunty, Dallas Museum of Art
- Walter Denny, University of Massachusetts Amherst
- Alejandro Vergara, Museo Nacional del Prado
Brown Bag Lectures
Brown Bag lectures provide an informal format for the presentation of current research by art history faculty and local curators or graduate students. These noon time discussions are intended for all faculty and graduate students in art history.
Brown Bag Discussions for 2015-2016
- Alison Weaver, Moody Arts Center, Rice University
- Alida Metcalf, Rice University
- Jessica Basciano, University of St. Thomas
Brown Bag Discussions for 2016-2017
- Sarah Rous, Post-doctoral Fellow, Rice University
- Rex Koontz, Professor of Art and Art History, University of Houston