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Academic Skills II (Art History): Searching and Processing Information, Writing and Oral Presentation


Admission requirements

Same as admission requirements for the BA Art History.


The course is a first step towards conducting independent art historical research and acquiring the skill of presenting/publishing research outcomes. Students explore a research topic from the list of topics on the Blackboard course module, that they themselves supplement with new relevant sources found in the literature. The course aimsat acquiring academic skills, in both oral and written presentation of information. All relevant steps in scholarly research are included: searching for literature, managing references, preparing a research proposal, formulating a research question and sub-questions, organizing relevant resources, presenting in the form of an oral report and writing of an academic f a scientific text, including footnotes and references to literature.

The skills acquired in the seminar sessions are tested on site, by visiting artworks and architecture in the museums and the urban context of an important cultural centre in the Netherlands.

Two seminar sessions will be organised by the Expertise Centre for Academic Skills, where the topics are:

  • Research skills: argumentation.

  • Oral presentation skills: presentation techniques and effective use of presentation software (Powerpoint).

Course Objectives

  • Students learn to present a critical reading of an artwork selected from Gardner’s Art through the Ages: A Global History.

  • Students acquire practical knowledge of conducting art historical research, writing and presenting, as required for studying works of art, architecture and design on an academic level.

  • Under the supervisoin of the tutor students learn to analyze a research question on a specific artwork/artifact or art historical topic and learn to formulate the appropriate sub-questions.

  • On the basis of an art historical theme and research question provided by the supervisor, students learn to find the relevant primary sources and secondary literature to answer the question.

  • Students learn to recognise the types of argumentation in speeches and texts.

  • Students learn to present a research plan and research question in an oral presentation for a group of peers for up to 10 minutes, with effective use of presentation techniques (PowerPoint).

  • Students learn to formulate critical questions in response to presentations and writings of their fellow students and learn to give constructive comments.

  • Students learn to support an argument in a 2500-word paper, excluding notes and support related to that

  • Students learn to cite their sources and literature according to academic standards.


Please note: for the final schedule refer to Collegeroosters / Timetable BA Art History on the Arts, Media and Society website.

Mode of instruction

  • Seminar

  • Excursion

Important: attendance in seminar sessions is mandatory! In case of no-show, the tutor should be informed about your absence prior to the actual seminar session. Moreover this course cannot be successfully completed by students that were absent more than twice. Only in exceptional cases, the Examination Committee may consider the possibility of an additional or substitute assignment. See also the Course and Examination Regulations 2018-2019.

Course Load

Course load in summary: 5 ects (140 hrs)

28 hrs: 12+2 seminar sessions on academic skills
14 hrs: preparing of a short oral presentation
18 hrs: literature research and preparation of an interim report
24 hrs: excursion (Friday - Sunday)
56 hrs: preparing and writing a final paper, based on feedback of the tutors

140 hrs

Assessment method

The final grade will be determined by means of weighing 3 components:

  • Assignment 1 (15%): research proposal, literature research report and other interim assignments.

  • Assignment 2 (15%): oral presentation.

  • Assignment 3 (70%): final paper of approximately 2500 words, excluding notes and references.

  • Active participation in the excursion and the seminars organised by the Expertise Centre for Academic Skills counts as a practical exercise (and is therefore mandatory).

Compensation: The weighted average of the (constituent) examinations must be at least 6.0 (= a pass). The mark for the final examination (or the main assignment) must be at least 6.0 at (= a pass). The mark for all other constituent examinations must be at least 6.0 (= a pass). However, it is possible to compensate for one constituent examination a 5.0 (but not a mark lower than 5.0) with the grade of another constituent examination which has the same weight in the average as the constituent examination it compensates.

Re-sit: A resit/ rewrite can be done for constituent examinations which are failed. As far as applicable all resit’s/ rewrite’s take place at the same time, after the final (constituent) examination.

Exam review: How and when an exam review will take place will be disclosed together with the publication of the exam results at the latest. If a student requests a review within 30 days after publication of the exam results, an exam review will be organized.


Blackboard will be used for announcements, course materials,communication and turn in of written assignments and the final paper.


The literature will be announced on Blackboard.


Via uSis.

General information about uSis is available in English and Dutch.

Exchange and Study Abroad students, please see the Study in Leiden website for information on how to apply.

Registration Studeren à la Carte and Contractonderwijs

Not applicable.


Dr. A.K.C. (Arthur) Crucq (coördinator)

Or send an e-mail to the study coordinator of the BA Arts, Media and Society


  • One or two short excursions in the Netherlands are part of the program and mandatory.

  • The excursion requires good conditions.

  • Please note that the cost of the excursion(s) amounts to a total of EURO 100,- (subject to change)

IMPORTANT NOTE: This course is part of the additional requirements regarding components that have to be completed for the first (positive) binding study advice. This means that the student should have passed this course in order to be able to continue in the programme. See the programme-specific part of the Course and Examination Regulations 2018-2019.