Directed Research

Undergraduate students have the option of participating in a directed research project to fulfill their capstone requirement. Directed research projects offer students an opportunity to continue studying, in greater depth, an area of research that was introduced in their VCU art history courses. Students work independently with a full-time tenured or tenure-track faculty member with expertise relevant to the topic of interest, typically completing a research paper that represents their art historical research and writing talents.

Directed research projects are a great option for students who are considering applying to graduate school.

Some past project topics include:

  • Women’s roles as patrons, pilgrims, and monastics during the medieval period
  • American performance culture with a focus on black entertainment and the development of the Civil Rights Movement in the 1960s
  • Élisabeth Vigée Le Brun’s portraits of Marie Antoinette

In order to participate in a directed research project, students must contact the faculty member they are interested in working with before filling out an application. Once the faculty member approves the project, an Application for Directed Research Project form will need to be filled out and approved by the department. The completed and signed form must be submitted at least three weeks prior to the beginning of classes.