Welcome to Visual Studies at the University of Pennsylvania. We live in an increasingly visual culture. New technologies and philosophies of vision influence how we see ourselves and our world, and how we think about seeing itself. The Visual Studies Major was created in 2003 to allow students to directly engage these developments through a multi-disciplinary course of study, connecting the theory, practice, and culture of seeing.
What do art and design look like when they are informed by understanding of the neurobiology of vision? How can theories and philosophies of vision enrich design, architecture, and communications? What if research into visual perception were shaped by the histories and cultures of seeing? These are just a few of the challenges taken up by the University of Pennslvania's Visual Studies majors as they remake design, vision science, philosophy, and art history for the 21st century. Fundamentally interdisciplinary, the Visual Studies Program partners with the Departments of Philosophy, Psychology, History of Art, Fine Arts, and Architecture.
The Visual Studies program is excited to announce a new area of concentration within the major. Now students interested in architecture and product design can declare a major in Visual Studies with a concentration in Architecture Practice and Technology (ArchPT).