In addition to course and research language requirements, progress toward the degree is evaluated through the following:
THESIS PROPOSAL + DEFENSE
Proposals can be made for academic projects, curatorial projects, or other appropriate research initiatives in the field of art history. The proposal is an initial statement of intention and constitutes the groundwork for the further development of the thesis. In the proposal, students state the major goals of their research, situate their topic's significance in an historiographical and/or literature review framework, indicate their methodological approach to the subject, and provide an anticipated timeline for the completion of the thesis. The student presents the proposal to a meeting of the Thesis Proposal committee after the proposal draft has been reviewed by the committee members.
The thesis is a scholarly contribution to knowledge that investigates a specific art historical argument, theory, or set of questions. Graduate-level thesis work should create new knowledge or understanding, as well as demonstrate the student's mastery in a given area that signals the beginning of the transition from apprentice to peer. The final Thesis submission becomes a permanent and official addition to the body of scholarship undertaken at UHM; the Thesis is permanently archived in the University of Hawaii's Hamilton Library.
The Thesis Defense is an oral examination during which the author demonstrates to the Thesis Committee satisfactory command of all aspects of the work presented and, if applicable, other related subjects.