• Offered by School of Art and Design
  • ANU College ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences
  • Course subject Art History
  • Areas of interest Art History, Cultural Studies, History, Design Arts, Arts
  • Academic career UGRD
  • Course convener
    • Dr Keren Hammerschlag
  • Mode of delivery Online or In Person
  • Offered in First Semester 2023
    See Future Offerings

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.

Indicative Assessment

  1. Tutorial presentation (1000 words) (20) [LO 2,4,5]
  2. Research questionnaire (500 words) (20) [LO 1,4,5]
  3. Take-home visual analysis exam (1000 words) (25) [LO 1,2,3,5]
  4. Research essay (2000 words) (35) [LO 1,2,4,5]

The ANU uses 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. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.


130 hours of total student learning time made up from: a) 36 hours of contact over 12 weeks: 24 hours of lectures (lectures, panels, group activities), and 12 hours of tutorials; and b) 94 hours of independent student research, reading and writing. Contact hours may include visits to art galleries, museums and collection on ANU campus and in Canberra.

Inherent Requirements

Not applicable

Prescribed Texts


Preliminary Reading

Barbe-Gall, Françoise, How to Look at a Painting (London: Frances Lincoln, 2010).

Barnet, Sylvan, A Short Guide to Writing About Art (Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Pearson/Prentice Hall, 2010).

Bell, Julian. Mirror of the World: A New History of Art (London: Thames and Hudson, 2007).

Berger, John, Ways of Seeing (London: BBC and Penguin Books, 2008).

Green, Alexandra (ed.). Rethinking Visual Narratives from Asia: Intercultural and Comparative Perspectives (Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press, 2013).

Harrison, Charles, Paul Wood, and Jason Gaiger (eds.), Art in Theory 1648-1815: An Anthology of Changing Ideas (London: Wiley-Blackwell, 2001).

Hodge, Susie, How to Look at Art (London: Tate Publishing 2014).

Kemp, Martin (ed.), The Oxford History of Western Art (New York: Oxford University Press, 2004).

Assumed Knowledge

Not applicable


Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

Commonwealth Support (CSP) Students
If you have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). More information about your student contribution amount for each course at Fees

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are a domestic graduate coursework student with a Domestic Tuition Fee (DTF) place or international student you will be required to pay course tuition fees (see below). Course tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2023 $3960
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2023 $5100
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only.
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.

First Semester

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
2568 20 Feb 2023 27 Feb 2023 31 Mar 2023 26 May 2023 In Person View

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