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Graduate Diploma in the History of Art

Course Structure | Assessment | How to Apply | Further questions

Do you want to study the history of art at an advanced level but do not have a first degree in either art history or a related humanities subject?

Our Diploma is specifically designed for students whose background may not be in art history, but who wish to study the subject at postgraduate level. The Diploma provides an ideal bridge to further postgraduate study, and is designed to prepare students for the MA providing a strong foundation in history of art as a discipline.

As a Diploma student you will be an integral part of the postgraduate and research community in the Department, and will able to attend departmental research events.

Course structure

You can complete the Diploma in either nine months (as a full-time student) or over twenty-one months (part-time).

In the Autumn term you take two modules. Practices of Art History introduces you to the discipline and its diverse approaches, as well as fundamental theoretical questions involved in art historical research. The other is Academic Preparation for History of Art. This module is not for credit, but it is a compulsory and essential part of the course, allowing you to develop the necessary research skills required for postgraduate study in the discipline.

In the Spring term, you take two further modules. One of these is a second-year 'long view' module, dealing with a topic such as the Renaissance or contemporary art. The second module is a third-year special subject, dealing with a more specialised topic related to the research of members of academic staff. You also continue with Academic Preparation for History of Art. Our Module Examples page gives and indication of the range of Long View modules and Special Subjects that may be offered.

In the Summer term you research and write an Independent Research Project of 8,000 words. You receive close guidance from members of staff when choosing your topic and in researching and writing up the project.

Diploma students are also required to attend departmental research seminars, when members of academic staff and scholars from other institutions present their latest research.

International students can also attend tailored tuition in English language. 


Each of the assessed modules counts for 25% of your total mark.

How to apply

It is easy to apply to the Diploma using the online postgraduate application form. When completing the form, you should specify 'Diploma' as the degree that you wish to follow.

Apply online