Art History and Visual Culture

at UBC's

Okanagan Campus

Explore a variety of global perspectives for studying art and visual culture, with courses on the arts of South Asia, the Middle East, Africa, Europe, and the Americas. You’ll develop critical thinking and writing skills while you analyze diverse forms of art and visual culture, including “high” art, pop culture, architecture, everyday objects, and performance in their cultural and historical contexts.

This program is also offered at UBC's Vancouver Campus
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Program information

  • Campus: Okanagan
  • Faculty: Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies
  • Degree: Bachelor of Arts
  • Length 4 yrs
  • Co-op Yes
    You can combine your studies with full-time, paid work at top local and international organizations.
  • Honours No
    You can study intense specialization in a single field.

Art History involves the close study and analysis of complex visual artifacts – including the fine arts, as conventionally conceived, and popular visual cultures, such as film and media – against a background of histories, ideologies, theories, and values. It offers you courses in the visual art traditions of many cultures, with particular focus on theoretical and critical discourses concerning the social impact of art and visual representation. Combined majors are available with Cultural Studies, or English.

Experiential learning and research

In third year you have the option of studying special topics and working with interpretive centres on team-based and project-based learning. You can also pursue an advanced investigation of an area of interest in a directed studies course, where you will complete directed readings and written assignments under the supervision of a faculty member.

What can you do with this major after graduation?

Your future

Students in the Art History and Visual Culture program at UBC’s Okanagan campus learn to analyze and interpret form, technique, iconography, and the historical function of art. As a graduate of this program, students are well positioned to thrive in a variety of organizations such as museums, galleries, historical societies, and provincial and federal arts.

Program graduates

  • Public programming coordinator, Kelowna Art Gallery
  • Archival assistant, Whyte Museum of the Canadian Rockies

Program requirements

English-language requirements

English is the language of instruction at UBC. All prospective students must demonstrate English-language competency prior to admission. There are numerous ways to meet the English Language Admission Standard.

General admission requirements

  • Completion of the IB Diploma with a minimum score of 24 points, including at least three Higher Level courses and additional points for Extended Essay and Theory of Knowledge.
  • Completion of Standard Level or Higher Level English A at a minimum score of 3, where English is the primary language of instruction.

Degree-specific requirements: Arts

  • No specific courses required beyond those needed for general admission
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