Syllabus Information

Official Syllabus Spring 2016

Spring 2016 Schedule

Course Components

Building Good Slide Lists

Study aids



Important Links

Metropolitan Museum of Art's Heilbrunn Timeline of
Art History

Art History Basics

Highly Recommended Reading

How to Never Forget Anything Ever Again, by Martin Griffel (, March 25,

What's Lost As Handwriting Fades, by Maria Konnikova
(New YorkTimes, June 2,

Better Ways To Learn, by Tara Parker-Pope (New York Times, October 6, 2014)

"How to Teach in an Age of Distraction," by Sherry Turkle. Chronicle of Higher Education, October 2, 2015. Available through AiDallas Library.

Tools for writing and evaluating information

style guide

writing about art

research resources

The following introductory remarks are designed to augment the syllabus and to provide a brief overview of the course. Specific assignments and other detailed information are available at left, and through the links on the home page.

Much of what you will need to know to make it through this course is provided through the eBook version of Gardner's Art Through the Ages: A Global History, 15th Edition, edited by Fred S. Kleiner. Most images and basic information on movements and periods are available in the textbook, although I do not simply lecture from the text. We will occasionally consult other sources, such as the Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History (from the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York), or the Khan Academy's Art History Basics. All additional material for which you are responsible on exams will be linked to the weekly slide lists and/or to the weekly schedule. Instructions for downloading and accessing the eBook are included on the official syllabus.

Slide lists: Each week's foundation lecture images will be listed on a table that provides spaces for basic information, images, and notes. You are responsible for maintaining your lists in good order and completing them (with images) in a timely fashion so that they will both facilitate learning and enable you to complete exams successfully. Completed slide lists may be used to answer questions on the midterm and final exams, and form an important component of your Workbook. Although I no longer assess workbooks for grades (your exam scores are the best indication of how well you are completing them), I will be happy to offer advice or look over them at your request.

Through long experience I have observed that students learn much more deeply when they encounter information repeatedly and are asked to make connections--rather than simply memorizing assorted facts and regurgitating them on tests. The more you actually use information, the more likely it is that you will turn it into knowledge. Slide lists are linked to the top of the topic page for each week and are designed to help you learn the material as painlessly as possible. Those who invest the time and effort have the best chance of succeeding in this class.

Although I frequently update lists, current slide lists and topic pages will be online and available at least one week before every scheduled lecture/discussion. I strongly suggest that you not download materials too far in advance, because images frequently change for a variety of reasons.

Two recent articles that support my contention that repetition and hand-written notes are effective learning tools are linked under "Highly Recommended Reading" at left.

Study Aids: These thematically designed charts and worksheets have been created to help you assimilate facts, ideas, and other information. Used in conjunction with slide lists, they can help you make connections across time and see how various ideas develop. Properly and accurately completed, they can also help you answer questions on exams. Although they will not be graded, I will be happy to check them over for accuracy; this process can be time-consuming, however, so it's best to make an appointment with me during office hours if you need help.

Workshops: These exercises contain both creative- and critical-thinking elements, and can help to deepen your understanding of the material by engaging you in some of the methods and materials used by artists in the past. Basic points are earned by undertaking the assignment and completing required components; other points are awarded for creativity, professionalism, grasp of assignment objectives, and evidence of critical thinking and information fluency.

Workbook: All of the above materials, plus the syllabus, additional notes, workshop results, and handouts distributed in class should be collected in a three-ring binder, dedicated to this class, and arranged in an orderly fashion (weekly dividers help). Only materials contained in a workbook (not a manila or pocket folder or a spiral notebook!) can be used on exams. My classes are often large, and space is at a premium, so you will not be able to spread random stuff all over the desk during exams. Note: I will no longer permit students to use materials on exams that are not contained in an appropriate binder.

Detailed instructions about how to complete all of the components listed above are linked at left.