ARTD 1010 Art history and its meaning (28847)

Professor Contact Information

Prof. Natalie Greenberg
Office Hours TBD
Mo We  11-12:15
Contact information:
Room 5145 Boylan

Art History is as much about looking as it is about writing. Low stakes writing assignments as well as a paper, along with exams, will assist students in accomplishing this learning objective.

PLEASE NOTE: The professor reserves the right to change the syllabus as needed over the semester. By remaining enrolled in this class, you accept that this syllabus is a binding contract between the student and professor.


This class is an introduction to the study of art and its history from ancient times to the present. In this course, we will study the history of Western art, beginning with the first objects created by prehistoric humans around 20,000 years ago and ending with the art and architecture of contemporary times.

The information presented in this course will provide you with the tools to recognize important works of art and historical styles, as well as to understand the historical context and cultural developments of Western art history through the end of the modern period.  Introductory readings paired with detailed lectures will provide you with a well-rounded sense of the history, art, and culture of the West up through modern times.

At the end of this course, you will be able to identify key works of art and artistic periods in Western history.  You will also be able to discuss the development of stylistic movements and relate those developments to important historical events.


This course has several goals:

  1. To develop visual literacy. Rather than focus solely on visual memory, this course has specific assignments designed to increase your ability to read imagery. You will develop skills in identifying, describing, and analyzing works of
  2. To expose you to some of the most important artworks from a variety of geographic areas and time periods. This is accomplished through lecture, reading, and exams. You will learn to identify shared characteristics among diverse artworks based on periods/styles and themes. You will also relate works of art to their cultural and historical
  3. To expose you to some of the most influential ideas and research that shape Art History as a Rather than learn facts as if they evolved out of thin air, this course focuses on how our understanding of art and history is constantly changing based on current investigations. In particular, this class encourages the idea that knowledge is constantly changing, and with it our understanding of history.
  4. To discuss the various methods and approaches to understanding art, including formal analysis, iconography, social history of art, and feminist art history. A basic understanding of how scholars make their arguments and select their evidence demonstrates how knowledge is produced, as well as models for students how to craft
  5. To develop your vocabulary with which to discuss art-historical issues. Art History has its own disciplinary language, and students will finish the course with a foundation with which to take further courses. Daily, students will be exposed to this vocabulary in their readings and in
  6. To assist you in writing and thinking more critically about artworks and art-historical


  • The course involves traditional lecturing and time for discussion.
  • This course requires time outside of lecture to complete readings and written assignments, and to prepare for examinations.
  • Students are also required to take at least one trip to a museum for their course paper.




  • After three absences, you should expect a letter grade lower as a result. I reserve the right to withdraw students for excessive absences. Every lecture includes material not covered in your readings, so it is essential that you come to lecture. Borrow another student’s notes if you miss lecture. Ask her or him any questions you might have about material you
  • There will be NO makeup exams. Only those students who can produce a documented medical or family emergency will be afforded the chance to make up a missed exam [Remember: must be documented! And the doctor cannot be a family member.]
  • Punctuality is a behavior expected of all students. Please be in your seat at the beginning of class and remain until the end. Students entering class after it has started will be marked as absent. Unless there is an emergency, you should not leave the classroom prior to the end of
  • Lateness & Submission Policy: NO assignments or papers will be accepted through email. Lateness, missed trains, broken printers or computers, work schedules, or negligence are not acceptable excuses for late work


Course Grades

Activity Percentage of Final Grade
Exam 120%
Exam 220%
Exam 320%
Short Writing Assignments10%
Museum Paper20%

Final grades will not be curved or rounded up. Please refer to the scale below for what constitutes a specific letter grade.

Grade Scale

PercentageLetter Grade Equivalent
97.00 – 100.00%A+
94.00 – 96.00%A
90.00 – 93.00%A-
87.00 – 89.00%B+
84.00 – 86.00%B
80.00 – 83.000%B- etc.

Lecture Attendance:

It is critical that students attend class, as the lectures provide important information not found in the readings. Also, you need to attend lecture to participate actively in our discussions.


  • There are three exams for this class; they are not cumulative.
  • They are based on lecture material, required course readings, discussions, and videos.
  • There will not be in-class
  • Exams will be composed of slide identifications, multiple choice, short answers and essays (single slide of comparisons).
  • What is a slide id? You identify an image by providing the artist’s name, work’s title, date, and original location. Images for which you need to know the id information will be marked with a star* on the PowerPoint slides

Short Writing Assignments

  • There are several writing assignments throughout the semester. They will be posted on Professor Greenberg’s Art 1010 course site.
  • All assignments, unless otherwise noted, should be typed in Times New Roman or Arial, with 12-point font, 1” margins all around, double-spaced.
  • These assignments are low-stakes writing assignments intended to develop your writing and critical thinking skills. They will be graded on a scale of 1- 10.

Museum Paper

  • Each student will write one short paper on an object of his or her choice from a local museum, such as the Brooklyn Museum, Metropolitan Museum, or Museum of Modern.
  • Here is a list of NYC Museums
  • The paper will be 3 full-pages in length.
  • The goals of this assignment are threefold:
    1. To look in detail at a work of art.
    2. To describe a work of art using art vocabulary.
    3. To analyze the formal qualities of an artwork.
  • More details will be posted on Professor Greenberg’s Art 1010 course site


  • Last day to add a course: Thursday, Jan 31
  • Last day to file Pass/Fail application: Monday February 4th
  • Last day to drop a course without a grade of ‘W’ : Friday February 15
  • Exam #1: (in class) Wednesday Feb 27th
  • Exam #2: (in class) Wednesday April 3rd
  • Exam #3 (during final exams May 16-22)
  • Museum Paper Due: Wednesday April 17.
  • Last day to apply for a withdrawal (‘W’ grade) from courses: Monday April 1
  • Holiday (No Classes): Spring Recess April 19-28


  • During both lecture and discussion, please be respectful of the instructor and other students.
  • Please refrain from talking, eating, sleeping, browsing the internet, checking email or Facebook, reading the newspaper, text messaging, doodling, and any other action that serves as a distraction to those around you.
  • Please do not leave class early; it is disruptive.
  • Please, KEEP YOUR CELL PHONES OUT OF SIGHT! I will ask you to leave if you are engaging in distracting actions, including texting or
  • Emails: Consider emails a last resort.
  • If you have questions, please come see me in office hours.
  • I am but one person; there are many of you. For this reason, please consider emailing a privilege.
  • Post questions to the Art 1010 student blog. When you email me, include in the subject heading the course number and reason for your email, and always include your name. The following are not appropriate reasons for communicating with the professor by email: (1) to request extra credit; (2) to attempt to negotiate changes in exam grades or final grade; (3) to find out what you missed during an absence; (4) or to ask what material will be covered on exams or quizzes–this information is announced in


You are all expected to be students of integrity. If anyone is caught cheating or plagiarizing, there will be serious repercussions; you will be reported to the Dean of Students.

If you do not know what constitutes plagiarism or cheating, please come talk to me and review the following resources:

If a student is found cheating or plagiarizing then no credit will be given for the assignment and the incident will be reported as per Brooklyn’s policy, which states:

The faculty and administration of Brooklyn College support an environment free from cheating and plagiarism. Each student is responsible for being aware of what constitutes cheating and plagiarism and for avoiding both.”

The complete text of the CUNY Academic Integrity Policy and the Brooklyn College procedure for implementing that policy can be found at the Brooklyn College Initiatives, Plans, and Policies pags. If a faculty member suspects a violation of academic integrity and, upon investigation, confirms that violation, or if the student admits the violation, the faculty member MUST report the violation.  [This means that if you cheat on a test or an assignment, I will file a report, which will initiate academic penalties.]


Accommodations for students with disabilities:

  • In order to receive disability-related academic accommodations (like extra time to take an exam/quiz, getting captioning for a video etc.) students must first be registered with the Center for Student Disability Services.
  • Students who have a documented disability or suspect they may have a disability are invited to set up an appointment with the Director of the Center for Student Disability Services, Ms. Valerie Stewart-Lovell at 718-951-5538.
  • If you have already registered with the Center for Student Disability Services, please provide me with the course accommodation form and discuss your specific accommodation with me.
  • If you need to make arrangements for a quiz/exam in the testing center, you need to notify the me at least one week before the exam/quiz.

Nonattendance because of religious beliefs:

  • Students who are unable to attend class because of religious beliefs will not have those absences count, but they must notify the professor in advance.The New York State Education Law provides that no student shall be expelled or refused admission to an institution of higher education because he or she is unable to attend classes or participate in examinations or study or work requirements on any particular day or days because of religious beliefs.
  • Students who are unable to attend classes on a particular day or days because of religious beliefs will be excused from any examination or study or work requirements.
  • Faculty must make good-faith efforts to provide students absent from class because of religious beliefs equivalent opportunities to make up the work missed; no additional fees may be charged for this consideration.
  • If classes, examinations, or study or work requirements occur on Friday after 4 p.m. or on Saturday, similar or makeup classes, examinations, or study or work requirements will be made available on other days, where possible and practical.
  • The faculty and the administration will not allow any adverse or prejudicial effects to accrue to students availing themselves of this regulation.
  • If students have complaints about the application of this policy, they are entitled to bring action or a proceeding for enforcement of their rights in the Supreme Court of Kings County.

Student Bereavement Policy:

  1. Students who experience the death of a loved one must contact the Division of Student Affairs, 2113 Boylan Hall, if they wish to implement either the Standard Bereavement Procedure or the Leave of Absence Bereavement Procedure (see #3 and #4, below). The Division of Student Affairs has the right to request a document that verifies the death (e.g., a funeral program or death notice).
  2. Typically, this death involves that of a family member, in parallel to the bereavement policy for faculty and staff. However, it is up to the discretion of the Division of Student Affairs to determine if a death outside of the immediate family warrants implementation of the student bereavement policy.
  3. Standard Bereavement Procedure:
    • Upon approval from the Division of Student Affairs, the student is allowed one week, commencing from the day of notification to the Division of Student Affairs, of excused absence.
    • Should the student feel that he/she needs additional days, these should be discussed with individual course instructors and/or the Division of Student Affairs.
    • The Division of Student Affairs will contact the student’s faculty and academic staff of the student’s courses.
    • Faculty and academic staff will be advised that extensions must be granted to the student for the period of one week of excused absence.
    • Further extensions may be negotiated with the student when he or she returns to campus.
    • Students are encouraged to discuss options with their instructors.
  4. Leave of Absence Bereavement Procedure:
    • Students may be allowed to withdraw from the semester in which the death occurs.
    • The Bereavement Leave of Absence is for one semester only.
    • Students who have opted to take the Bereavement Leave of Absence and have already attended classes for the semester of the leave will be allowed to re-enter the following semester without having to reapply to the college.
    • Students who wish to take the leave of absence prior to the beginning of the semester will be required to reapply for the following semester.
    • Students who are in good academic standing will be given the opportunity to successfully complete the credits for the semester in which they return.
    • Students will consult with the Division of Student Affairs, on a case-by-case basis, as to whether they should withdraw from their courses during this leave of absence or to request incompletes from the faculty member.
    • Given that there may be a potential impact on financial aid, students who receive financial aid and who take the Bereavement Leave of Absence, upon arrangement with the Division of Student Affairs, will meet with a financial aid adviser prior to taking this option.
  5. As an option, and in consultation with the Division of Student Affairs, students may take the Leave of Absence Bereavement after the Standard Bereavement.
  6. Reference to the Student Bereavement Policies will be noted on course syllabi.
  7. Students requesting a religious accommodation should contact the Division of Student Affairs as well. The chief student affairs officer, or a designee, and the student will engage in an interactive process with the goal of finding an acceptable accommodation.