Assessment

Penalties for lateness and overlength work

Classification for the award of BA Honours degree

Single Honours BA - Year 1

Students should take note that the passing mark has been officially changed to 40%.

Under the course-unit system all courses are examined in the year in which they are taught. The first year's examinations are essentially a hurdle; each student must normally pass at least three units' worth in order to proceed to the second year, but no more than 1 unit's worth of marks may be carried forward to affect the class of your degree. Therefore, the class of the final degree is based on marks achieved in the second and third years. All course work and examination scripts are marked by two examiners and the marks awarded are subject to approval by external examiners.

First Year students are assessed on their ability to:

  • To demonstrate basic understanding of the characteristic subjects and problematics involved in a range of art-historical enquiries.
  • To respond to the range of art-historical discourses with which the course will confront them.
  • To produce a coherent written argument in the form of an essay, in accordance with guidelines and to deadlines, and to function adequately under examination conditions.
  • To bring historical evidence together with appropriate critical and theoretical positions to bear on art-historical problems.
  • As appropriate, to integrate close work on objects with more general narratives and less object-centred historical and theoretical preoccupations.
  • To identify and set in appropriate contexts specific works and monuments from the periods they have been studying. For further information, see First Year Marking Criteria.

Current UCL students can access exam papers from previous years through the library website:

  1. Follow the link that says CLICK HERE TO ACCESS ONLINE EXAM PAPERS.
  2. Enter your UCL username and password.
  3. Click on the SOCIAL AND HISTORICAL SCIENCES option.
  4. Click on HISTORY OF ART.

Single Honours BA - Year 2

Students should take note that the passing mark has been officially changed to 40%.

Under the course-unit system all courses are examined in the year in which they are taught. The class of the final degree is based on marks achieved in the second and third years: only one of the first-year marks can count towards the class of the degree. Most second and final-year courses have the essays and/or other contributions you make to a course assessed as part of the mark you are given for the course-unit concerned. In all cases, even where all the mark comes from the exam, if the coursework is not completed the the exam for a course cannot be sat. All course work and examination scripts are marked by two examiners and the marks awarded are subject to approval by external examiners.

Second Year students are assessed on their ability to:

  • To assimilate and organise large amounts of secondary material.
  • To demonstrate familiarity with bodies of visual material, and to analyse and discuss them using relevant intellectual tools.
  • To identify and engage with some major issues in art-historical debate relating to broad themes or topics.
  • To develop and sustain arguments which link the close study of specific monuments or works of art with relevant art historical discourses.
  • As appropriate, to acquire the knowledge and skills necessary for the development of an understanding of techniques in art.
  • As appropriate, to acquire an awareness and understanding of current positions and debates in methodology of the subject.
  • As appropriate, to acquire a knowledge and understanding of the formation and development of theories of art in the Western world.
  • To write and otherwise present material coherently and effectively within guidelines and to deadlines.
  • To work in a group, to take responsibility for the learning of others, and as appropriate to show leadership.For further information, see Second Year Marking Criteria.

Current UCL students can access exam papers from previous years through the library website:

  1. Follow the link that says CLICK HERE TO ACCESS ONLINE EXAM PAPERS.
  2. Enter your UCL username and password.
  3. Click on the SOCIAL AND HISTORICAL SCIENCES option.
  4. Click on HISTORY OF ART.

Single Honours BA - Year 3

Under the course-unit system all courses are examined in the year in which they are taught. The class of the final degree is based on marks achieved in the second and third years: only one of the first-year marks can count towards the class of the degree. Most final-year courses have the essays and/or other contributions you make to a course assessed as part of the mark you are given for the course-unit concerned. In all cases, even where all the mark comes from the exam, if the coursework is not completed then the exam for a course cannot be sat. All course work and examination scripts are marked by two examiners and the marks awarded are subject to approval by external examiners.

Third Year are assessed on their ability to:

  • Take substantial responsibility for personal academic development.
  • Develop a command of a body of visual material, a body of literature and a debate around a defined topic, identify and demonstrate the ability to manipulate the key evidence, issues and arguments structuring the topic.
  • Master bibliographic and, as appropriate, archival skills.
  • Make links, as appropriate, between disciplines and demonstrate cross-fertilisation.
  • Demonstrate, as appropriate, the ability to develop the knowledge and skills derived from 2nd-stage courses into a close examination of a particular object, development or debate.
  • As appropriate, meet departmental criteria for assessing the results of independent study as set out in the Undergraduate Report memorandum.For further information, see Final Year Marking Criteria.

Current UCL students can access exam papers from previous years through the library website:

  1. Follow the link that says CLICK HERE TO ACCESS ONLINE EXAM PAPERS.
  2. Enter your UCL username and password.
  3. Click on the SOCIAL AND HISTORICAL SCIENCES option.
  4. Click on HISTORY OF ART.

MA degree students are assessed on their ability:

  • to write clear and accurate essays on set topics to specific deadlines;
  • to take responsibility for the defining and completion of academic tasks as required;
  • to demonstrate mastery of debates round a defined topic;
  • to organise textual and visual evidence, to engage with issues and arguments, as appropriate;
  • to use and order bibliographical and archival materials;
  • to make a considered choice of topic for independent study, to plan and develop a project, to argue a case coherently - employing effective examples - to document the material accurately and systematically - using language in a precise and appropriate way.

For more detailed criteria and Grade Descriptors used in marking MA submissions see the MA Assessment Criteria, or use the link to the left.

Penalties for lateness etc.

Core Course, Special Subjects and the Dissertation

The Core Course, each Special Subject and the dissertation all have equal weight in the final assessment. The method of assessment represents a balance between assessed essays and independent research. The pass mark for the MA degree is 50%; marks of 70% and above qualify for a distinction. Failure of any part of the degree constitutes a failure of the degree.

The Core Course is assessed by two essays (one of 2,000-2,500 words, one of 4,000-4,500 words) completed during the autumn and spring terms.

The Special Subjects are assessed by two 3,000-3,500 word essays due in January and April.

The summer term and the summer vacation period is devoted to work on the dissertation. The Dissertation (13,000-14,000 words) should involve original research and is developed under the supervision of the most appropriate member of staff. To proceed to the dissertation students must complete a viva which takes the form of a short presentation which must be passed.

Please see the Dissertation Notes tab for Guidance on the Planning and Presentation of the MA Dissertation.

MPhil or PhD

Candidates for the PhD register initially for an MPhil which can be upgraded to a PhD at the end of the first year on the successful presentation of a paper to the Graduate Teaching Committee - the paper is normally presented at the Graduate Seminar.

MPhil and PhD degree programmes extend over not less than two years for full-time students and three or four years for part-time students.

PhD theses are expected to be completed within three years for full-time students and within five years for part-time students.

The examination for both degrees is by thesis, but students should take available courses appropriate to their subject.

Current Research Staff at UCL

FAQs regarding PhD Admissions

For further information on application procedures, please contact the Research Tutor.