Survival Guide for Art History Students, A

Prentice Hall
Christina Maranci  
Total pages
June 2004
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For one-/two-semester courses in Art History Survey.

Designed to guide students through the often disorienting experience of taking a first art history class, this text addresses all aspects of that total experience-with chapters on note-taking during lecture, studying for and taking slide exams, and writing response papers. An easy-to-read, student-friendly tone makes this book a valuable companion for the first-time art history student.


  • Step-by-step coverage-Transitions students from the familiarity they feel with other subjects to this one.
    • Assists students throughout the many weeks of their art history course-as they are asked to talk about images, write about them, prioritize information about them, and engage with them visually in a way that has never been asked of the student before.

  • A practical organization.
    • Reflects the standard components of the introductory art history class as taught in colleges in the United States.

  • Introductory chapter.
    • Allows students to consider why art history is important.

  • Each chapter devoted to a different aspect of the course.
    • Serves students as a guide for specific assignments.

  • Numerous examples throughout-Of both strong and weak classroom contributions.
    • Teaches students how to best formulate their own in-class responses, exam answers, and papers, and gives them a comfort level with many assignments-such as how to write a two-page paper on a single work of art.

  • Concluding coverage of more advanced topics.
    • Addresses such problems as methodology, how to critique secondary scholarship, and what to do with an art history degree.

Table of Contents

1. Why Take an Art History Class?

2. The Art History Classroom: An Initiation.

3. Putting Words to Images: Mastering the Response Essay.

4. The Art History Exam.

5. Research Projects in Art History.

6. What Do You Do with a Degree in Art History?

Back Cover

A Survival Guide for Art History Students is designed to help students succeed in art history courses. The art history classroom is a unique learning environment that most students first experience in college. Survival Guide is sympathetic to this, offering practical instruction and guidance for every moment in students' coursework, from the initial disorientation of their first art history class ("art in the dark") to the challenge of the slide exam.

Survival Guide gives practical guidance on how to take notes, write paper assignments, as well as how to study for and take exams. It deals with the kinds of questions that students commonly ask but professors seem hesitant to write about: "Isrit art history a gut course?", "What in the world do you do with a degree in art history?", "Is 500 BC later or earlier than 190 AD?", and "How can I take notes and look up at slides at the same time?" Designed for student readers, Survival Guide is written in a familiar and engaging tone.

The images discussed and illustrated are primarily those of western art from the ancient to modern eras. By focusing on images that are taught in standard art history survey courses, Survival Guide reinforces and builds upon course materials.