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Careers in Art History

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Studying the History of Art is fascinating, intellectually stimulating and enormously fulfilling, and furnishes you with a wide range of skills which are highly sought-after by employers in a wide range of fields and professions.

Like other humanities degrees, History of Art teaches you a range of useful transferable skills, including:

  • how to construct a logical argument and form a judgement based on evidence
  • how to research a topic thoroughly by finding and analysing a large body of relevant material.
  • how to present a case clearly and convincingly (written and spoken)
  • how to think creatively.

 A History of Art degree will expose you to social, cultural and intellectual history; philosophy; literary studies; and some of the technical aspects of the production, curatorship, and use of visual material, as well as the history and analysis of different movements, styles, and individual works.

As with all Cambridge degrees, the workload is considerable: as a result, employers know that our graduates have excellent time management and self-motivation, and are prepared to make an impact at the highest levels and in the most demanding jobs. Unlike other humanities subjects, studying History of Art also teaches you visual literacy – the ability to analyse images and objects. In an increasingly visual world, this skill is invaluable.

What do our students do after their degrees? Many go on to further study, to complete Masters’ degrees and/or PhDs in related fields. Students frequently gain employment in areas related to their degree such as museums, galleries, the care and maintenance of collections, conservation and heritage management, design, the fashion industry, film and television, advertising, the built environment, and the art market. Some become practising artists themselves. Others use the skills and insights gained in their studies to pursue successful careers as lawyers, bankers, actors, writers, doctors, accountants, politicians, and in business, as well as in many other walks of life.