SOAS University of London

History of Art and Archaeology


Module Code:
15 credits
Year of study:
Year 2

This module centres on a three-day field trip during Term 2 Reading Week. Subject to funding, the destination may be to one or more cities in Britain with major museums and galleries, or to mainland Europe.

The trip combines guided tours and talks with student-led presentations and independent research. It encourages students to closely engage with the sites and to encourage them to critically consider different approaches to arts and cultural heritage.

The destination of the fieldtrip will depend on special exhibitions, availability of local curators and SOAS staff, students’ interests, among other issues. Students will prepare for the fieldtrip by attending lectures which will discuss the key sites, museums, artworks and special exhibitions that will be visited. The field trip is an important component of the History of Art, and Creative Arts and Cultural Industries programs as it allows students to put into practise the critical and practical skills they learn in lectures.

Objectives and learning outcomes of the module

On successful completion of this module a student will be able to:

  • Understanding of key issues and challenges that impact cultural institutions
  • Develop research skills utilising a range of resources relevant to the artworld
  • Demonstrate insight into a range of curatorial approaches to display, collecting, repatriation and/or education-led museum programs
  • Evaluate varied approaches to the study of the arts of East Asia


  • Lectures: 2hrs per week
  • Fieldwork: 24hrs for the module

Scope and syllabus

  • Weeks 1-3: Three two-hour lectures in which the aims, schedule etc of the fieldtrip will be discussed.
  • Week 4: Students will submit a 700word summary of a site to be visited during the fieldtrip.
  • Week 6: The fieldtrip will take place in Term 2 Reading Week and will be led by two members of SoA academic staff, and a local tour-guide. During the three-day fieldtrip, students will give a 10min on-site presentation on a museum/object/exhibition of their choice, that will be visited
  • Weeks 8-9: two two-hour lectures to reflect on the fieldtrip

Method of assessment

  • 700 word critical image analysis (worth 20% of marks)
  • 1,500 - 1700 word reflective essay (worth 40%)
  • 700 word summary of fieldtrip site (worth 20%)
  • Oral presentation: 10 mins (worth 20%)


Important notice regarding changes to programmes and modules