Computing and the Arts

Computing and the Arts is an interdepartmental major for students who wish to integrate computing with work in Architecture, Art, History of Art, Music, or Theater Studies. Majors explore topics from these arts disciplines in the context of mathematics, computer science, and information technology. For students with a computing perspective, issues in these disciplines present interesting and substantive problems. For students with an artistic perspective, computing methods offer a systematic approach to achieving their vision.

In addition to prerequisites, the major requires six term courses in Computer Science, six in the arts, and a senior project. Students choose a track in one of the arts disciplines and satisfy the corresponding requirements. The capstone of the program is a two-term senior project advised by faculty from Computer Science and from the chosen art.

During freshman year, prospective majors with little or no programming experience should take CPSC 100, Introduction to Computing and Programming, or CPSC 112, Introduction to Programming, which is a prerequisite for all tracks. Students with sufficient programming experience may instead enroll in CPSC 201, Introduction to Computer Science; this course is a requirement of the major for all tracks.

Students considering the music track should take the music theory placement test during orientation. Those whose placement requires them to take MUSI 110, Introduction to the Elements of Music, or MUSI 205, Tonal Harmony and Form, should complete these courses by the end of freshman year.

Prospective majors should also consider the following courses during freshman year, depending on their track of interest:

  • ARCH 260, History of Architecture I: Antiquity to the Baroque
  • ARCH 261, History of Architecture II: The Eighteenth Century to the Millennium
  • ART 111, Visual Thinking
  • ART 114, Basic Drawing
  • HSAR 112, Introduction to the History of Art: Prehistory to the Renaissance
  • HSAR 115, Introduction to the History of Art: Renaissance to the Present
  • MUSI 210, Elementary Studies in Analysis and Model Composition I
  • THST 110, Survey of Theater and Drama
  • THST 111, Survey of Theater and Drama

Students interested in the major are encouraged to discuss their programs with the director of undergraduate studies as early as possible.