The Wired! Lab offers a Digital Art History track as part of the Department of Art, Art History & Visual Studies’ Master of Arts degree in Digital Art History/Computational Media. The department also offers a track in Computational Media.

The 18-month Digital Art History program integrates historical disciplines and the study of cultural artifacts with digital visualization techniques for the analysis and presentation of research. The program builds on courses and well-developed strengths at Duke University, and requires 10 courses over three semesters in addition to summer research. Students affiliate with an existing faculty research initiative, from which they will develop their own independent research project for the M.A. thesis. Common themes that unite the various projects are the visualization of process, the representation of change over time, recontextualizing displaced objects and object biographies.

The M.A. prepares students for future work in such fields as public history, city planning and architectural design, cultural heritage, museum exhibition design and visualization-based journalism, and provides a springboard for more advanced study in art history, archaeology, architectural history and visual studies. Limited funding may become available in the form of grants and assistantships to students upon positive progress in the program. For Fall 2019, we are pleased to announce a the Samuel H. Kress Foundation Graduate Fellowship in Digital Art History to offset the cost of an entering student into the Master’s program. The fellowship is specifically meant for populations of students often underrepresented in digital art history including people of color, first generation college students, and women. Learn more here.

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Video by Ran Xin, Duke MFA in Experimental Documentary Arts ’17

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The ideal candidate seeks engagement with digital humanities, digital art history, digital architectural history and digital archaeology, and conceptualizes digital visualization as a way of doing research. The program encourages applicants from across the Humanities and Social Sciences, whether from stablished disciplines, such as history, archaeology, and art history, or emerging fields of study, such as spatial history, media arts & sciences, and cultural geography.

To apply, prospective students must submit an online application through the Duke University Graduate School. Applications must include a statement of purpose, three letters of recommendation, as well as transcripts and scores from the GRE General exam. International applicants must submit English language proficiency test scores if English is not their first language.

More information on application requirements can be found at the Graduate School’s Online Application FAQ.

Please note that Duke University does not provide financial support for master’s-level graduate study, but applicants are urged to compete for national and foundation awards or seek student loans. A website maintained by Duke’s Office of Research Support lists awards available from a variety of federal and private sources. Questions about financial aid should be directed to the Graduate School’s financial aid coordinator.


Deadline to apply March 15, 2019

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Digital Art History Requirements

First Semester (4 courses = 12 credits)

HCVIS 580S: Historical and Cultural Visualization Proseminar 1
ARTHIST 723S: Grant Writing and Prospectus
Two Electives

In the first semester, all MA in Digital Art History students are expected to affiliate with one of the Research Projects in the Wired! Lab.

Second Semester (4 courses = 12 credits)

HCVIS 581S Historical and Cultural Visualization Proseminar 2
Three Electives

Third Semester (2 courses = 6 credits)

Research Independent Study with Primary Advisor
Additional Thesis Credit — Thesis Criteria

Recommended electives.

Computational Media Requirements

First Semester (4 courses = 12 credits)

HCVIS 580S: Historical and Cultural Visualization Proseminar 1
Practice Course
Practicum Experience 1 or Lab-Based Seminar
Graduate Seminar (Recommended: ARTHIST 723S: Grant Writing and Prospectus)

Second Semester (4 courses = 12 credits)

HCVIS 581S Historical and Cultural Visualization Proseminar 2
Practicum Experience 2
Graduate Seminar

Third Semester (2 courses = 6 credits)

Thesis Credit 1
Thesis Credit 2
Final Thesis Exhibition

Recommended electives.

Graduate Certificate in Information Science + Information Studies

Students in the MA program are eligible to earn Duke’s graduate certificate in Information Science + Information Studies. Find out more on the program’s website, or contact their office.

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