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Art History and Museology: international Master of Arts degree course

Degree: Master of Arts
Application: mandatory
Course commences: winter semester only
Standard course duration: 4 semesters (1st and 2nd Semester in Paris, 3rd and 4th Semester in Heidelberg)
Format options: full-time only
Language requirements:

Very good knowledge of German and French (B2 of European language levels) Knowledge of two modern foreign languages (B2) Basic Latin (can be replaced with a 3rd modern foreign language)

Languages of instruction: German, French (optional classes may be in English)
Other features: postgraduate / consecutive

Faculty of Philosophy


Course structure

The programme for the international M.A. course in Art History and Museology (IMKM) is the world’s first integrated M.A. degree course in art history. It is recognised as such by the Franco-German University (DFH). Standard duration of the course is 4 semesters. Students receive a mobility allowance from the DFH totalling EUR 2,700 to defray the expenses of the 10-month sojourn in Paris or Heidelberg.

The two-year M.A. programme combines the different assets of the two internationally renowned institutions involved. The first year is spent in Paris and consists of the course on museology, cultural heritage preservation and restoration that the Ecole du Louvre has been offering with signal success for a number of years now. The practically oriented course focuses on the history of collections and conservation issues as well as the masterminding and organisation of exhibitions. The students have ample opportunity for first-hand acquaintance with the major artworks on show at the Louvre and other Paris museums and to analyse and discuss the presentation of those works.

The aim of the subsequent one-year sojourn in Heidelberg is to train the participants in the essentials of scholarly inquiry and to enhance their analytic/critical faculties. Heidelberg University with its outstanding library holdings on the relevant subjects is an ideal setting for students working on their M.A. thesis.

Graduates from the IMKM course will be fully equipped to embark on a career in the international museum and exhibition sector and in cultural heritage preservation. At the same time, the programme is broad enough to open up prospects for professional activity in other areas with links to art history, such as culture management, secondary education, higher education, research, adult education, tourism, publishing (press, radio, television, online services), the art/antique trade, and art consultancy.

Aufbau des Studiums

The International M.A. Course in Art History and Museology is an integrated bi-national Master programme. It is run jointly by the Ecole du Louvre and Heidelberg University ( Of the total of four semesters the first two are spent at the Ecole du Louvre, the other two at Heidelberg University. The course begins in Paris in the winter semester. The examinations in the first two semesters are subject to the Examination Regulations of the Ecole du Louvre. The examinations in the 3rd term and the M.A. thesis are subject to the Examination Regulations of Heidelberg University. Between the two academic years students have the opportunity for an internship (optional) and participation in an excursion under bi-national supervision.

For more detailed information on the curriculum, go to the website of the Institute (, “Studium”).

Main research interests

Heidelberg University

With five professors, a senior professorship, six professorial assistants and various extraordinary, honorary and adjunct professors, the Institute of European Art History (IEK) at Heidelberg University covers the full range of the subject from the Middle Ages, Early Modern Age, Renaissance, Baroque and Classicism all the way up to modern and contemporary art. This coverage includes Europe’s most important art regions and all the relevant genres from drawing, print graphics and painting to sculpture and architecture and also encompassing literature on art, art theory, and methodology. One special feature is the focus on Ibero-American art. The offerings of neighbouring subjects (Archaeology, Byzantine Art History, East Asian Art History, Jewish Art History at the College of Jewish Studies, etc.) and teaching collaboration with the cluster of excellence “Asia and Europe in a Global Context” present students with excellent opportunities for extending their profiles on the intercultural plane.

At present, research projects are under way at the Institute of European Art History on the following subjects (a selection):

  • digitisation of medieval book illustrations and analysis of narrative strategies in the interplay between text and image
  • various construction research projects, e.g. digital reconstruction of the medieval monastery in Lorsch (incl. development of an  information system)
  • script and script characters on and in medieval artworks: investigation of inscriptions in liturgical space, on church portals and walls (part-project in the framework of Special Research Project SFB 933 “Material Text Cultures – Materiality and Presence of the Written Word in Non-Typographic Societies”)
  • portable music videos: research project on the aesthetic presentation of music videos for handhelds (smartphones, tablet PCs, etc.).

In Heidelberg, art history teaching and research benefit from ease of access to sources and research literature unrivalled anywhere else in Germany. Aside from the extensive Institute library, Heidelberg University Library provides not only a highly significant collection of older texts but also two Special Collections on “Middle-Period and Recent Art History up to 1945” and “Classical Archaeology” with near-complete and regularly updated holdings of the relevant research literature.

Ecole du Louvre

The renowned Ecole du Louvre is an elite higher-education institution offering courses in art history, museology, archaeology, cultural history and epigraphy. Founded in 1882, the Ecole is located in the Palais du Louvre (Paris) and has the status of a public administrative establishment under the aegis of the French Ministry of Culture.

Alongside the many courses on offer, the Ecole also hosts scholarly symposia and conferences. Teaching is international and multidisciplinary, thanks not least to the annual “Rencontres de l’Ecole du Louvre” at which issues in art history are discussed by and with scholars from France and elsewhere, curators, and students. The Ecole has a periodical of its own which publishes not only the results of the Rencontres but also student texts and specialist articles by established researchers on topics associated with the cultural heritage. The Ecole du Louvre is also co-sponsor of the journal Histoire de l’art, which focuses on archaeology and art history.

The library of the Ecole du Louvre provides 50,000 volumes, the picture archives hold nearly 400,000 diapositives and approx. 50,000 slides. This makes the library one of the largest of its kind in France covering art history, archaeology, museology and cultural anthropology. As such it is fully integrated into the teaching programme of the Ecole.

Formal requirements


Applications are welcome from students with a B.A. degree in art history or in study courses with basically the same subject matter, which has to take up to a minimum of 50%, or 70 ECTS-Points. The grade of the Bachelor thesis as well as the overall final grade must be equivalent to a German 2,3 or better. Also required is a very good knowledge both in German and in French (B2 of European language levels). Overall, knowledge of two modern foreign languages (at B2 of the European language levels) as well as Latin is required. A third modern foreign language on application may replace the latter. International experience (Erasmus, German Academic Exchange Service schemes, etc.) is of advantage.


Access to the course is restricted. Click here for the Admission Regulations.

Prospective students (both German and international) students apply online, directly to Heidelberg University.

Deadline for application

15 May (for the subsequent winter semester)

Admission procedure

Latest update on Application Procedure Information

The following documents must be submitted:

motivation essay (approx. 1 page)

tabular CV with photo

copy of B.A. certificate (or provisional degree confirmation)

copy of school-leaving exam records

full transcript of records

language certificates (school-leaving exam records, language course certificates, etc.)

More information

Website of the Institute of Art History

Study and examination regulations

Examination regulations M.A. (28 March 2007)

Module Handbook

Please click here to find the latest Module Handbook.

Examinations board

Issues arising in connection with examinations, credit transfer and academic credential recognition are dealt with by the relevant examinations board/office. For more information, consult the academic advisor(s) indicated below.


Tuition fees at Heidelberg University are payable at the beginning of each semester.

Academic advisor

Caroline Marié M.A.
Seminarstr. 4, Office 017
Tuesdays 1 - 3 pm
Tel.: +49 (0) 6221-54-2471


Institute of European Art History
Seminarstraße 4
D-69117 Heidelberg

Sekretaries' office:

phone: +49 (0)6221 542423
fax: +49 (0)6221 543382


Student representation:



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Letzte Änderung: 2018-11-28
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