The minor in visual culture exploits one of the unique strengths of Syracuse University: a world-class arts school in the midst of a research institution. The minor provides you with the critical skills necessary to address the evolving intersection of art, design, and communication in a variety of contexts, including the art world, advertising, fashion, politics, and popular culture.

The flexible curriculum is designed to complement studio-based majors in the College of Visual and Performing Arts and provide majors outside VPA with a concentration in visual culture and criticism that is theoretically and historically informed. Drawing on the diversity of disciplinary approaches to visual culture within the college, the minor fosters critical engagement with diverse modes of visual expression and communication, from advertising design and image activism to material culture and public sculpture.

Students in the visual culture minor will:

  1. Be adept in multidisciplinary approaches to analyzing how diverse sensory modes (i.e. verbal, aural, tactile, etc.) inform and interact with visual expression;
  2. Understand the diverse institutional frameworks shaping visual culture across different modalities (art media, studio practice, design, and material culture); and
  3. Become an effective communicator (orally and in writing) of theoretically complex and historically informed visual analysis.

Open to all students with the exception of history of art majors in VPA's School of Art, the visual culture minor should be of interest to students who seek a program that focuses on visual culture as the nexus of creative practice, advocacy, and criticism.

Visual Culture Minor Curriculum Worksheet [PDF]

Curricular Requirements

Full visual culture minor requirements.


To apply to the visual culture minor, please fill out our minor application form.


Rachel Hall, Ph.D.

Associate Professor
Department of Communication and Rhetorical Studies