The PhD Program in Art History at the University of Chicago offers multifaceted art historical training including object-driven teaching and research, robust language offerings, and opportunities for extensive coursework in other disciplines across the Humanities Division, the Social Sciences Division, and the Divinity School, among others. Graduate students benefit from vibrant partnerships with world-class art institutions in Chicago, both on and off campus, including the programs of the Chicago Object Study Initiative. 

The University of Chicago is committed to fostering a diverse and inclusive campus that enables individuals of all backgrounds to thrive. As an extension to the University‚Äôs commitment, the Department of Art History is engaged in initiatives to diversify its faculty, students, and the academic and curatorial professions at large.


Applications to the Art History PhD program must be submitted through the Humanities Division Admissions website, which provides detailed instructions including the specific, annual mid-December deadline for admission the following fall quarter. We cannot consider late applications. Questions about admissions should be directed to the Office of Admissions of the Division of the Humanities.

The department does not offer a terminal MA degree, but the University of Chicago does offer a Masters Program in the Humanities (MAPH), in which students can choose to concentrate in art history and/or pursue a Curatorial Option

Select students may pursue joint PhD degrees with art history and another department or program. Please refer to the graduate program page for additional details.

The written parts of the application generally have much greater weight when it comes to making admissions decisions. We do not currently require GRE scores.

All applicants for whom English is not a primary language may be required to submit current scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). Current scores are no more than two years old at the time of application submission. A complete description of the English proficiency policy may be found at this website, and questions about the English proficiency requirement should be directed to The minimum required TOEFL score is 100, with 25 on each subsection. The minimum IELTS is 7.0, with 7.0 on each subsection. 

Once an application is submitted, it will be forwarded to the Department of Art History. Each year the department has a limited number of slots for which we are able to offer admission; there are always far fewer slots than qualified applicants. In order to determine which applicants will be offered those slots, the art history faculty review applications in a series of committees. Building on these reviews, the full faculty decides upon a list of applicants to recommend to the Humanities Division for admission. Interest on the part of faculty most likely to advise the student certainly matters, but final admissions decisions are made by the department as a whole rather than by individual faculty. Formal notification of decisions comes from the Humanities Division.


For general questions about the graduate program that are not answered on the website, please contact the Director of Admissions in the Department of Art History. You may contact individual faculty members with specific questions but there is no expectation that you do so. To contact a current PhD student in a particular area of interest, please e-mail:

Graduate Study at UChicago

For information about graduate study at the University of Chicago, the city of Chicago, and the neighborhood of Hyde Park, see the UChicagoGRAD pages for prospective students. We have also compiled a helpful list of resources related to collections, UChicago and the city on this website. All Undergraduate Admissions are handled by the College Admissions office.

Prospective or admitted graduate students may join a tour of campus. Tours are offered by the UChicagoGRAD office and led by current graduate students. Offered Monday through Friday, tours last approximately one hour. Walk-ins are welcome, but advanced registration is preferred. For additional questions or special accommodations, contact UChicagoGRAD. For additional information of interest to visitors, including lodging information, refer to the Visiting the University webpage. 

For questions about the status of applications materials and other general questions about the admissions process, please contact the Office of Admissions of the Division of Humanities at or 773-702-1552.