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The College Board launched the redesigned Art History course in Fall 2015.

AP Art History, designed to be the equivalent of a two-semester college course, encourages critical thinking and an understanding and knowledge of diverse historical and cultural contexts of architecture,sculpture, painting and other media. Students examine and critically analyze major forms of artistic expression from the past and the present from a variety of cultures. An emphasis is placed on understanding how and why works of art function in context, considering such issues as patronage, gender, and the functions and effects of works of art.

The redesigned course specifies learning objectives, defines course content, and identifies 250 works of art students are required to understand to support their in-depth learning, critical analysis skills, and discovery of connections among global artistic traditions.

The course covers 10 content areas, each represented by a specified number of exemplary works of art:

  • Global Prehistory, 30,000-500 B.C.E.
  • Ancient Mediterranean, 3500 B.C.E. – 300 C.E.
  • Early Europe and Colonial Americas, 200-1750 C.E.
  • Later Europe and Americas, 1750-1980 C.E.
  • Indigenous Americas, 1000 B.C.E. – 1980 C.E.
  • Africa, 1100-1980 C.E.
  • West and Central Asia, 500-B.C.E. – 1980 C.E.
  • South, East, and Southeast Asia, 300 B.C.E. – 1980 C.E.
  • The Pacific, 700 – 1980 C.E.
  • Global Contemporary, 1980 C.E. to Present.

For more information, refer to the Course and Exam Description, which includes sample exam items.

AP periodically conducts surveys of comparable curricula at four-year colleges and universities to inform AP course and exam development. College courses generally cover the various art media in the following proportions: 40–50 percent painting and drawing, 25 percent architecture, 25 percent sculpture, and 5–10 percent other media.

For more information, visit the Art History home page on AP Central.

Read the full course description and exam information with sample questions.