Art History

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How to Apply

Admission to the graduate programs are selective. Students are expected to have had substantial undergraduate work in the history of art. A minimum of 12 term credit hours of undergraduate art history above the survey level or equivalent is required before a student may begin to accumulate hours for graduate credit. Students who have been admitted without adequate undergraduate preparation will be expected to take the requisite number of undergraduate hours before or during their first term at SMU.

The applicant should have a reading knowledge of at least one language other than English. Applicants must take the GRE for consideration but may petition this requirement if undergraduate enrollment concluded more than five years prior to the time of application. Additionally, non-U.S. citizens who are residents outside the U.S. must take the TOEFL (iBT is preferred) and achieve a minimum overall score of 80 with minimums in each section of 20. The TOEFL requirement may be waived only if the candidate has a previous degree from an English-speaking university or has completed an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution in the U.S. An interview with the art history graduate adviser is desirable.

Outstanding students are awarded tuition grants and teaching/research assistantships. These awards are based on merit. Students accepting the offer of a scholarship may not decline the accompanying assistantship. In addition, the division has funds available so that graduate students may travel to conduct research on their thesis topic.

Application for admission with consideration for scholarship and financial aid for the fall term must be filed in full by January 1st.

***ANNOUNCEMENT*** We will be accepting applications for the Master of Arts in Art History for a second round of consideration.  Candidates may apply for consideration into the Fall 2016 program of study through March 1, 2016. 

Apply online here.

Please read carefully before beginning your application

Deadline and Application Fee
To assure full consideration for the fall term, application should be completed online and ALL supporting materials pertaining to the application for admission should be delivered to the Meadows Graduate Office BEFORE January 1st (MA 2nd round before March 1st). Materials received from applicants who do not enroll will be retained by the Meadows Graduate Office for one year. All documents become the property of Southern Methodist University and cannot be returned. A $75.00 non-refundable application fee is required.

Request in writing one official transcript from the Registrar of each college or university previously attended, including summer terms. These may be sent directly to the Meadows Graduate Office. If the transcripts are sent to you, do not open the sealed envelopes, and mail them to the Meadows Graduate Office. A supplementary transcript covering work in progress at the time of the application must be furnished upon completion of that work. International transcripts that are not in English must be accompanied by official translations and evaluations.

Three letters of recommendation are required. Letters of recommendation should be requested from professors who know the personal and academic qualifications of the applicant. When completing an online application applicants will have the opportunity to arrange for letters to be delivered electronically to the recommenders listed. Applicants will need a valid email address for each recommender and upon submission, notification will be emailed to them directly with instructions on submitting a web-recommendation form on behalf of the applicant. We will also accept drafted letters by mail.

Writing Sample
Applicants to the Art History program must submit with their application a sample paper (preferably a research paper or a comparable piece of written research).

Applicants must also take the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) general test. The test scores should be sent from the Educational Testing Service in Princeton, New Jersey directly to "SMU Meadows Sch Arts": School Code 6292, Department Code 2301 Art History and Criticism. Applicants who have not been enrolled in college in the last five years are exempt from these two requirements.

Financial Aid
Scholarships and graduate assistantships for qualified, admitted students are available from the graduate division. Candidates for graduate awards are encouraged to file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). This form is not required from international students on the F-1 visa. For additional information, contact the Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid, Meadows School of the Arts, PO Box 750356, Dallas, Texas 75275-0356 (telephone 214.768.3314).

Additional Documents Required for International Applicants

A score of a least 80 (minimum of 20 in each section) on the TOEFL iBT (or 213 or 550 on older versions of the test) is required of all international applicants whose first language is not English. Before an applicant can be considered for admission into a graduate program, the applicant must request the TOEFL score to be sent from the Educational Testing Service in Princeton, New Jersey directly to to "SMU Meadows School of the Arts", School Code 7640, and the appropriate Department Code in the Humanities category: 26 Art History. Applicants who have graduated from a U.S. or English-speaking university are exempt from this requirement.

I-20 and F-1 Visa
All international students admitted to a graduate program are required to provide:

  • photocopy of passport page that shows official spelling of student’s name (submitted at time of application)
  • proof of financial support, usually in the form of a certified letter from a bank (submitted following an offer of admission)

Submission and Contact Information
All materials and/or questions regarding the application process should be directed to the following:

Graduate Admissions
SMU | Meadows School of the Arts
PO BOX 750356
Dallas TX 75275

Or SMU physical address:

Graduate Admissions
SMU | Meadows School of the Arts
6101 Bishop Blvd
Dallas TX 75205

Joe S. Hoselton

Areas of Study



Art History

Message From The Chair

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M.A. in Art History

RASC/a: Ph.D. Program in Art History



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