• Class Number 2728
  • Term Code 3130
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
    • Dr Chris McAuliffe
    • Dr Chris McAuliffe
    • Dr David Hansen
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 22/02/2021
  • Class End Date 28/05/2021
  • Census Date 31/03/2021
  • Last Date to Enrol 01/03/2021
SELT Survey Results

This course introduces key concepts and methods in the history of art and design. You will explore how images and objects shape ways of seeing, imagining and knowing the world, and consider how they establish cultural meaning through material, form and ideas. Art and design—primarily from Europe, Asia and Australia—will be considered in terms of cultural beliefs, social meaning, historical experience and systems of knowledge. Focussing on the themes of time and place, the course will examine with cultural practices in terms of history (context, continuity, change), knowledge (reason, imagination, belief), meaning (mediums, symbols, aesthetics) and experience (materiality, subjectivity, sociality).

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. identify and apply the principal methodologies of art history and theory;
  2. analyse the visual, historical and theoretical aspects of a broad range of visual culture;
  3. identify major cultural themes and historical paths in World art;
  4. research and access information about art history and theory; and
  5. present written and oral arguments about the ideas that inform art and design from a wide range of periods and cultures.

Research-Led Teaching

Lectures will be delivered primarily by staff and associates of the Centre for Art History and Art Theory, School of Art & Design. Lectures are based on the research expertise of academics, drawing on extensive practice in scholarly research, exhibition and museum curatorship, and professional practice in the gallery, library, archive and museum sector.

Field Trips

Subject to current COVID restrictions field trips to galleries on campus and in Canberra may be undertaken. Students will be encouraged to make use of major museums and collections in Canberra in undertaking assessment tasks.

Additional Course Costs

A class or assessment task involving a field trip or independent research visit to an art gallery or museum may incur costs relating to public transport, parking or admission. Field trips and independent research visits to museums and galleries are subject to current COVID regulations within ANU and ACT Health guidelines.

Examination Material or equipment

Not applicable

Required Resources

The principle resources for the course will be available to participants through the course Wattle site (course outline, class readings, guides to research and writing, assessment tasks). Additional resources supporting engagement with the curriculum (video, online content links, study and writing guides, advice on assessment tasks) will be posted on Wattle. Classes and assessment tasks are designed to be supported by general internet access and ANU on-line and on-campus resources (libraries, Drill Hall Art Gallery, Wattle, Echo360, Turnitin etc).

It is recommended that students take advantage of resources offered within the ANU library system (including numerous specialist online research and information sources) as well as the support services of the University. Additional resources are available to students at museums and collections in Canberra.

Staff Feedback

Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course: written comments on essays and other written assessment, verbal comments to the whole class, to groups and to individuals, as required and appropriate.

Student Feedback

ANU is committed to the demonstration of educational excellence and regularly seeks feedback from students. Students are encouraged to offer feedback directly to their Course Convener or through their College and Course representatives (if applicable). The feedback given in these surveys is anonymous and provides the Colleges, University Education Committee and Academic Board with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement. The Surveys and Evaluation website provides more information on student surveys at ANU and reports on the feedback provided on ANU courses.

Other Information

Referencing Guidelines for essay writing and further information on how and why to cite your sources can be found at: http://art-cass.anu.edu.au/current_students/referenceguide.php

Information about how to upload your assignments on to WATTLE can be found here: http://cass.anu.edu.au/intranet/eds/resources

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 Lecture topics: Art, time and art history Each lecture will include presentations surveying key periods and issues in art history, a case study in art historical method (research method, writing, evidence, argumentation, explication), and group forums on topical issues in art history, theory and curatorship. Tutorials begin Sign up on Wattle for tutorial presentations, weeks 9-12
2 Lecture topics: The Renaissance and art historical method Research Questionnaire posted on Wattle
3 Lecture topics: Time and narrative in European and Asian art Essay questions posted on Wattle
4 Lecture topics: The Baroque---Art, design and environment Research Questionnaire due Tutorial presentations begin
5 Lecture topics: The Enlightenment---Art and science
6 Lecture topics: Classicism in Europe and Asia Research Questionnaire returned
7 Lecture topics: Imagining place---Ideal landscapes in Europe and Asia
8 Lecture topics: Landscape in the age of exploration and colonisation---Australia, the Pacific and the USA
9 Lecture topics: Displaying art, framing knowledge---The 18th century origins of the modern museum, The international expositions of the 19th century Essay due
10 Lecture topics: Romantic art---Subjectivity, knowledge and the historical imagination
11 Lecture topics: The advent of photography
12 Lecture topics: Realism: Empiricism and allegory Essay returned
13 Exam period Take-Home Exam issued

Tutorial Registration

Students must register for one of the available tutorial times via Wattle. The tutorial schedule will include options for on campus (subject to COVID restrictions) and online classes.

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Due Date Return of assessment Learning Outcomes
Research Questionnaire 20 % 19/03/2021 02/04/2019 1, 4, 5
Tutorial presentation 20 % * * 3, 4, 5
Research Essay 35 % 07/05/2021 28/05/2021 1, 2, 4, 5
Take-home exam 25 % 10/06/2021 19/06/2021 1, 2, 3, 5

* If the Due Date and Return of Assessment date are blank, see the Assessment Tab for specific Assessment Task details


ANU has educational policies, procedures and guidelines, which are designed to ensure that staff and students are aware of the University’s academic standards, and implement them. Students are expected to have read the Academic Misconduct Rule before the commencement of their course. Other key policies and guidelines include:

Assessment Requirements

The ANU is using Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website. Students may choose not to submit assessment items through Turnitin. In this instance you will be required to submit, alongside the assessment item itself, hard copies of all references included in the assessment item.

Moderation of Assessment

Marks that are allocated during Semester are to be considered provisional until formalised by the College examiners meeting at the end of each Semester. If appropriate, some moderation of marks might be applied prior to final results being released.


Study in the humanities develops skills in critical thinking, analysis, judgement and argumentation. These skills are developed in tutorial discussions, where ideas arising in lectures, readings and group activities are shared, debated and refined. Tutorial discussion can also be used to ask and answer questions, and clarify your understanding of course content and assessment tasks. Weekly tutorial participation is essential for full engagement with curriculum and learning.


This course does not require a formal examination. A take-home examination is required.

Assessment Task 1

Value: 20 %
Due Date: 19/03/2021
Return of Assessment: 02/04/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1, 4, 5

Research Questionnaire

Details of task:

This exercise is designed to introduce you to essential research tools that you will later use to support your development of essays, tutorial presentations and other forms of academic writing. The questionnaire uses a series of simple exercises and questions to guide you to resources (library catalogues, searchable databases, museums, reference works) that you will regularly use during your study at ANU. It introduces you to the reference system set out in the Chicago style: http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide/citation-guide-1.html It encourages you to assess various resources and distinguish between general or aggregated sources (Wikipedia and others) and those that support research of a university standard. You will also gather basic research information relating to one of number of listed art works relevant to the course. The word limit below refers to answers require within the research questionnaire.

Word limit (where applicable): 500 words

Value: 20%

Submission date: 19 March 2021

Estimated return date: 2 April 2021

Assessment Rubrics: Assessment Rubric available on course Wattle site.

Hurdle Assessment requirements (where applicable): N/A

Individual Assessment in Group Tasks (where applicable): N/A

Assessment Task 2

Value: 20 %
Learning Outcomes: 3, 4, 5

Tutorial presentation

Details of task:

Focussed and purposeful oral presentation is an essential communication skill within the university, the art sector and the workplace. This exercise is designed to focus on the foundations of an engaging and targeted presentation communicating an idea, interpretation or issue that you have identified in an art work. You will nominate to do a presentation in one tutorial within weeks 4-12 of the semester. You will choose one item from a range of art works listed for each week on Wattle as the focus of your presentation. Art works listed, and your presentation, will relate to the general topic for the given week, as covered in lecture(s) and readings. The oral presentation will refer directly to the selected art work and may involve visual presentation such as an onscreen slide show (typically PowerPoint) or projected image. Detailed guidelines, including specific limits of format, number of slides, word length and duration of presentation will be available on Wattle, along with tips and suggestions. The week after your presentation, you will submit a 500 word written summary of your presentation. It is assumed that a brief oral presentation in class will be 500 words in length. The combined word length of the exercise amounts to 1,000 words. You will assessed on both the oral and written elements of the presentation.

Word limit (where applicable): 1,000 words

Value: 20%

Presentation requirements: Oral presentation in a nominated class within weeks 4-12 of the teaching program.

Submission date: Oral presentation in class, in the nominated week for the topic. Written summary submitted one week after presentation (via course Wattle site).

Estimated return date: One week after submission of written summary.

Assessment Rubrics: Assessment Rubric available on course Wattle site.

Hurdle Assessment requirements (where applicable): N/A

Individual Assessment in Group Tasks (where applicable): N/A

Assessment Task 3

Value: 35 %
Due Date: 07/05/2021
Return of Assessment: 28/05/2021
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 4, 5

Research Essay

Details of task: This task requires you to develop a response to one of a number of essay questions that will be posted on Wattle. The questions will relate to topics, themes, art works and issues that are raised in the lecture topics, class readings and discussions. The task encourages you to develop fundamental skills in art historical analysis and writing. Your essay will directly and purposefully address a question, and construct an argument in relation to art works, based on observation, research, analysis, argumentation and evidence. An effective essay will develop an informed and focussed argument, supported by convincing evidence, robust research sources and formal academic support (quotations, footnotes, citations, illustrations, bibliography or list of references). The essay will be more than an overview, an appreciation or a summary of reading.

Essays will be assessed according to the criteria set out in the rubric available on Wattle. Detailed advice on layout, formatting and assessment rubric will be provided on the course Wattle site. Weekly lectures will offer advice and examples of argument , evidence and writing. Additional support is offered by the Academic Skills Unit.

Word limit: 2,000 words

Value: 35%

Submission date: 7 May 2021

Estimated return date: 21 May 2021

Presentation requirements: upload to course Wattle site

Assessment Rubrics: Assessment Rubric available on course Wattle site.

Assessment Task 4

Value: 25 %
Due Date: 10/06/2021
Return of Assessment: 19/06/2021
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 3, 5

Take-home exam

Details of task: This task will seek your ideas and reflections on topics, themes and art works examined throughout the semester. You will be given one week to answer a set question or questions that nominate a topic, and invite you to explore it in a nominated art work. The exercise invites synthesis (drawing together ideas, information, evidence), reflection (developing an overview, identifying key ideas or methods or challenges), and visual analysis (observing, describing, pointing to). It will test your engagement with the overall themes of the course and your grasp of the key elements of observation, evidence and argument. It is not a research exercise and does not require the scholarly apparatus of footnotes and bibliography. If, however, you do quote from another source then you should provide a footnote to indicate this.

As this is an exam no extensions will be granted and late submission will not be accepted.

Exam questions issued commencement of examination period: 3 June 2021

Submission date: 10 June

Return date: Examinations are not returned. Examination results will be listed at completion of the examination period and submission of semester results.

Word limit (where applicable): 1000 words

Value: 25%

Presentation requirements: upload to WATTLE

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a core part of our culture as a community of scholars. At its heart, academic integrity is about behaving ethically. This means that all members of the community commit to honest and responsible scholarly practice and to upholding these values with respect and fairness. The Australian National University commits to embedding the values of academic integrity in our teaching and learning. We ensure that all members of our community understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. The ANU expects staff and students to uphold high standards of academic integrity and act ethically and honestly, to ensure the quality and value of the qualification that you will graduate with. The University has policies and procedures in place to promote academic integrity and manage academic misconduct. Visit the following Academic honesty & plagiarism website for more information about academic integrity and what the ANU considers academic misconduct. The ANU offers a number of services to assist students with their assignments, examinations, and other learning activities. The Academic Skills and Learning Centre offers a number of workshops and seminars that you may find useful for your studies.

Online Submission

You will be required to electronically sign a declaration as part of the submission of your assignment. Please keep a copy of the assignment for your records. Unless an exemption has been approved by the Associate Dean (Education) as submission must be through Turnitin.

Hardcopy Submission

For some forms of assessment (hand written assignments, art works, laboratory notes, etc.) hard copy submission is appropriate when approved by the Associate Dean (Education). Hard copy submissions must utilise the Assignment Cover Sheet. Please keep a copy of tasks completed for your records.

Late Submission

Late submission of assessment tasks without an extension is penalised at the rate of 5% of the possible marks available per working day or part thereof. Late submission of assessment tasks is not accepted after 10 working days after the due date, or on or after the date specified in the course outline for the return of the assessment item. Late submission is not accepted for take-home examinations.

Referencing Requirements

Accepted academic practice for referencing sources that you use in presentations can be found via the links on the Wattle site, under the file named “ANU and College Policies, Program Information, Student Support Services and Assessment”. Alternatively, you can seek help through the Students Learning Development website.

Returning Assignments

Work submitted electronically will be responded to on Wattle.

Extensions and Penalties

Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure. The Course Convener may grant extensions for assessment pieces that are not examinations or take-home examinations. If you need an extension, you must request an extension in writing on or before the due date. If you have documented and appropriate medical evidence that demonstrates you were not able to request an extension on or before the due date, you may be able to request it after the due date.

Resubmission of Assignments

Students who fail to score a pass, but are marked between 45 and 49% will have the opportunity to resubmit.

Privacy Notice

The ANU has made a number of third party, online, databases available for students to use. Use of each online database is conditional on student end users first agreeing to the database licensor’s terms of service and/or privacy policy. Students should read these carefully. In some cases student end users will be required to register an account with the database licensor and submit personal information, including their: first name; last name; ANU email address; and other information.
In cases where student end users are asked to submit ‘content’ to a database, such as an assignment or short answers, the database licensor may only use the student’s ‘content’ in accordance with the terms of service – including any (copyright) licence the student grants to the database licensor. Any personal information or content a student submits may be stored by the licensor, potentially offshore, and will be used to process the database service in accordance with the licensors terms of service and/or privacy policy.
If any student chooses not to agree to the database licensor’s terms of service or privacy policy, the student will not be able to access and use the database. In these circumstances students should contact their lecturer to enquire about alternative arrangements that are available.

Distribution of grades policy

Academic Quality Assurance Committee monitors the performance of students, including attrition, further study and employment rates and grade distribution, and College reports on quality assurance processes for assessment activities, including alignment with national and international disciplinary and interdisciplinary standards, as well as qualification type learning outcomes.

Since first semester 1994, ANU uses a grading scale for all courses. This grading scale is used by all academic areas of the University.

Support for students

The University offers students support through several different services. You may contact the services listed below directly or seek advice from your Course Convener, Student Administrators, or your College and Course representatives (if applicable).

Dr Chris McAuliffe

Research Interests

Modern and contemporary art, primarily Australia and USA. Interactions between art and popular culture (sport, popular music). Earthworks, installation and minimalism. Art and national discourses (monuments, flags, sport). Curatorship and exhibition practices. Practice-led research and knowledge formation in studio practice.

Dr Chris McAuliffe

Wednesday By Appointment
Wednesday By Appointment
Dr Chris McAuliffe

Research Interests

Dr Chris McAuliffe

Wednesday By Appointment
Wednesday By Appointment
Dr David Hansen
6125 6218

Research Interests

Dr David Hansen

Thursday By Appointment

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