Declaration of Major Procedure and Student Portfolio

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In addition to filling out the Declaration of Major Form, students in both the studio and art history tracks are required to set up a portfolio before they are officially accepted into the Major.

Studio: When declaring the major, students will request that the Department create an online folder under their name and graduation year. Into this file they will deposit five jpeg images of studio work already completed. Each image will be identified by artist’s name, title, dimensions, media, date, and course for which the work was done. This may be done through individual images of a PowerPoint presentation. Additionally, students will provide a written statement about their work, otherwise known as the Major Essay, as is required from all students at Rhodes College. This artist’s statement* will include a reflection on studio work already done, your understanding of the discipline, a proposed course of development through senior year, and what role the major may play in your life as a student. In this statement mention must be made of media, process, and the search for artistic excellence. This statement will not exceed three hundred words. A separate slide list with above identifying information for submitted art images should be included.

As part of the senior thesis, normally completed in spring of the senior year, studio majors will deposit five more jpegs (or a Powerpoint with five images) into their departmental file.  Each image will be identified by artist’s name, title, dimensions, media, date, and course for which the work was done. They will also submit a final draft of their artist’s statement.

*For examples of such writing, see Herschel Chipp’s Theories of Modern Art.


Art History: When declaring the major, students will request that the Department create an online folder under their name and graduation year. Into this file they will deposit a copy of a paper written in an art history course. They will also provide a written statement, known as the Major Essay, as is required from all students at Rhodes College. This short essay, of no more than three hundred words, will include a reflection on your goals in pursuing the art history major, links between the study of art history and other courses you have taken, or will take, your understanding of the discipline, a proposed course of development through senior year, and what role the major may play in your life as a student.

As part of the senior seminar, normally completed in fall of the senior year, art history majors will deposit in their departmental folder a copy of their senior seminar paper. They will also write a personal statement reflecting on their work for the senior seminar, its relation to previous research in art history courses, accomplishments and experiences that complement the major, and plans for future development. This short essay should not exceed three hundred words.**

**For an example of such writing, see Professor McCarthy’s faculty page with the Art Department webpage.


All student portfolios will be kept for the purposes of internal and external assessment.