If ‘literacy’ means the ability to read and write, then ‘Visual and Critical Studies’ means cultural literacy. And that involves the ability to "read"-to understand and interpret the art, philosophy, and visual thinking of the past and present-and to "write"-to make art. Visual and Critical Studies thereby activates a life in culture through encounters with the history of visual practices, theories, and things.
Visual and Critical Studies attracts students who want strong connections between their undergraduate studies and their studio work. They are thinkers as well as artists, and they are especially artists who do not want to be restricted to a single studio major. Visual and Critical Studies students take nearly as many credit hours in studio courses as they would in a studio major, and what they gain on the other side is a guided, thought-provoking tour of the visual life of the mind.