Introduction to the Theories, Methods and Historiography of the Study of Visual Cultures is the core requirement for both the new Ph.D. minor and the new graduate certificate in the transdisciplinary study of visual cultures. The seminar charts the formation and history of the dynamic, multi-stranded, and still changing field. It seeks to build a practice-based knowledge of the theories and methods important to the field's formation as well as those driving the field's future. You will develop a set of skills in critical reading, research, analysis, writing, and presentation (including visual presentation methods) that will be of use to you throughout graduate school and in your professional life beyond. Toward these goals, the course has three main dimensions. As your introduction to the Ph.D. minor here, the course will take advantage of the programming of the Center for Visual Cultures, introduce you to faculty and students involved in the study of visual cultures (building a sense of intellectual community), and introduce you to research resources here and in the area that may be of use to you during your time with us. As your introduction to the practices in the study of visual cultures, the course explores the controversies that drove the field's formation, its complex relations to various disciplines and the issues, challenges, debates fueling the ongoing transformations of the field. The readings are necessarily selective and partial. Thus, you are encouraged to use the syllabus as a map leading you to deepen your knowledge through further study. As a practicum, the seminar also emphasizes the development of essential skills in critical reading and analysis, primary and secondary research methods, the writing of various kinds of professional prose, oral presentation, and oral response to questions that are vital to your success in graduate study and future viability in the field. In addition to weekly readings and discussion, work for the course may include examining and analyzing visual objects, conducting primary and secondary library and archive research, producing oral presentations, writing pieces that correspond to specific kinds of professional writing such as the critical book review, the abstract or conference paper proposal, the literature review or annotated bibliography, the project prospectus, and the prospectus presentation and response to questions. In all cases, students will be encouraged to use the course to navigate the course according to the needs and dictates of their own research and developing areas of specialization.