History of Art

What will I study in History of Art A level?

A subject of aesthetes and scholars, creatives and the intellectually curious. Perhaps you love art but do not have an artistic bone in your body. Maybe you are already a great artist and want to learn more about the past masters to inspire you. You might even be a historian who wants to simply learn more history, with a healthy dash of panache.

History of Art is a subject which clearly compliments both History and Art, whilst also reaching out to those interested in Design and even Geography, with the thematic investigation of art and architecture in the city. Anyone with an interest in how emotion, authority or devotion is transmitted in visual or tactile media should consider this subject. History of Art explores the ways that art has been used to reflect and influence society and the ways that art itself has evolved over time, appealing to the full spectrum of society.

Studying History of Art helps to build you analytical skills and hone your writing technique, but most importantly it will make you more cultured, less boring, it will widen your outlook on the world and give you plenty to talk about in job interviews and dinner parties. In short this subject is guaranteed to make you a better person.

Entry requirements

A love art, but not necessarily the ability to create it.

Units of study

  • Paper 1: Analytical Studies in Western and non-Western Art
    A study of 40 named works of art addressing visual analysis and the knowledge of context.
  • Paper 2: Historical Topics
    Topic 2: Art, religion and society in Romanesque Europe, c.1000-1200.
    Topic 4: Man, the measure of all things: the Italian Renaissance, c.1400-c.1600
  • Paper 3: Thematic Topic
    Topic 1: Art and architecture in the city
  • Paper 4: Personal Investigation Externally marked coursework of 3000 words.


The course is assessed through three exams and one extended essay (coursework)

  • Paper 1: 1 hr 30 mins
  • Paper 2: 2 hrs 15 mins
  • Paper 3: 2 hrs 15 mins

Where could it lead?

Working in galleries and museums, auction houses.