Student Handbook 2021-2022 - Bard Graduate Center

Student Handbook 2021-2022 - Bard Graduate Center

            Minton & Co. Fern and Foxglove
            Garden Pot and Stand, shape
            no. 1056, designed ca. 1851; this
            example 1866. Earthenware with
            majolica glazes. Joan Stacke Graham
            Collection. Photograph: Bruce White.
Student Handbook

Academic Programs
Bard Graduate Center
Decorative Arts, Design History, Material Culture

Revised Summer, 2021
Table of Contents

6    Faculty and Staff
8    Governance
10   General Academic Policies
16   MA Program
22   PhD Program
36   Resources and Policies
38   Research Collections Guidelines
40   Other Institutional Policies
Administrative Offices, Academic Programs, Research Center,
Gallery, and Public Programs

38 West 86th Street, New York, NY 10024                 The New York State Education Department has
Location of all classes, Academic offices, Library,     registered the following courses of study leading
VMR, Faculty offices, DML, Object Lab, Public           to Bard College bachelor, masters, and doctoral
Programs, Research Center                               degrees: the bachelor of arts, bachelor of music,
                                                        bachelor of science, master of arts in curatorial
18 West 86th Street, New York, NY 10024                 studies, master of arts in teaching, master of
Galleries                                               fine arts, master of business administration in
                                                        sustainability, master of music in vocal arts,
Other Offices: 18 West 86th Street, New York, NY        master of music in conducting, master of music
10024                                                   in curatorial, critical, and performance studies,
Development, External Relations, Finance and            master of science in environmental policy, master
Administration, Director’s Office                       of science in climate science and policy, master
                                                        of education in environmental education, master
Please note that buildings are closed to students,      of science and master of arts in economic theory
faculty, and staff on the following holidays: New       and policy, and the master of arts, master of
Year’s Day, Martin Luther King Day, Memorial Day,       philosophy, and doctor of philosophy degrees
Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving, the          in decorative arts, design history, and material
day after Thanksgiving, Christmas Day. All other        culture. New York State Education Department,
changes to building hours will be sent to students,     Office of Higher Education, Office of College
faculty, and staff via email.                           and University Evaluation, Room 960 EBA, 89
                                                        Washington Avenue, Albany, NY 12234; phone 518-
Academic Programs Office                                474-1551.
Telephone: 212.501.3019 (events line)
                                                        Bard is also a member of the American Council on
Students should familiarize themselves with the         Education, American Council of Learned Societies,
regulations and procedures listed in the Student        Association of American Colleges and Universities,
Handbook. Bard Graduate Center maintains the            College Entrance Examination Board, Commission
right to review and amend policies as required.         on Independent Colleges and Universities,
Students, faculty, and staff will be duly informed of   Education Records Bureau, and Environmental
any such changes. Be advised that the provisions        Consortium of Hudson Valley Colleges and
of this handbook are not to be regarded as an           Universities.
irrevocable contract between the student and
Bard College or its officers and faculty. The College   Notice of Nondiscrimination
reserves the right to make changes affecting            Bard College is committed to ensuring equal
admission procedures, tuition, fees, courses of         access to its educational programs and equal
instruction, programs of study, faculty listings,       employment without regard to an individual’s sex,
academic grading policies, and general regulations.     gender, race, color, national origin, religion, age,
The information in this handbook is subject to          disability, gender identity, sexual orientation,
change without notice.                                  predisposing genetic characteristics, marital
                                                        status, veteran status, military status, domestic
Bard College is accredited by the Middle States         violence victim status, ex-offender status, or any
Commission on Higher Education, a regional              other characteristic protected by federal, state,
accrediting agency approved by the United States        or local law. Students, employees, applicants,
Education Department. Middle States Commission          and other members of Bard College community
on Higher Education, 3624 Market Street, 2nd Floor      (including, but not limited to, vendors, visitors, and
West, Philadelphia, PA 19104; phone 267-284-            guests) shall not be subject to discrimination or
5000.           harassment prohibited by law or otherwise treated

adversely based upon a protected characteristic.
Similarly, the College will not tolerate harassing,
violent, intimidating, or discriminatory conduct by
its students, employees, or any other member of,
or visitor to, the College community. This includes,
without limitation, sexual harassment, sexual
assault, sexual violence, dating violence, and
domestic violence.

Educational Rights and Privacy Act
Bard College complies with the provisions of
the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act
of 1974. This act assures students attending a
postsecondary institution that they will have
the right to inspect and review certain of their
educational records and, by following the
guidelines provided by the College, to correct
inaccurate or misleading data through informal
or formal hearings. It protects students’ rights
to privacy by limiting transfer of these records
without their consent, except in specific
circumstances. Students have the right to file
complaints with the Family Policy Compliance
Office, U.S. Department of Education, Washington,
D.C. College policy relating to the maintenance of
student records is available, on request, from the
Office of the Registrar.

Faculty and Staff

Bard Graduate Center                                  Susan Weber, Founder and Director, Iris Horowitz
  Susan Weber, Founder and Director                 		       Professor in the History of the Decorative Arts
                                                      Ittai Weinryb, Associate Professor, Director of
Academic Programs                                   		Doctoral Studies, Editor of “West 86th:
  Peter N. Miller, Dean and Professor                        A Journal of Decorative Arts, Design
                                                             History, and Material Culture”
  Deborah L. Krohn, Professor and Chair of
		      Academic Programs                             Catherine Whalen, Associate Professor
  Keith Condon, Director of Admissions and            Christian Larsen, Windgate Research Curator
		      Student Affairs                               Annissa Malvoisin, Bard Graduate Center /
  Laura Minsky, Associate Director of Research      		Brooklyn Museum Postdoctoral Fellow in
		 Programs                                                  the Arts of Africa
  Jen Ha, Coordinator of Research and Academic        Soon Kai Poh, Conservation as a Human Science
		 Events                                           		 Fellow
  Alec Newell, Degree Programs Coordinator            Kenneth L. Ames, Professor Emeritus
  Jesse Merandy, Director of Digital Humanities/      Pat Kirkham, Professor Emerita
		 Exhibitions                                        Elizabeth Simpson, Professor Emerita
  Dan Lee, Director of Publishing                     Paul Stirton, Professor Emeritus, Editor in Chief
  Katherine Atkins, Managing Editor                 		of “West 86th: A Journal of Decorative Arts,
                                                             Design History, and Material Culture”
  Alexis Mucha, Associate Director of Sales,
		      Marketing, and Rights for Publications
                                                    Research Collections
Faculty                                               Heather Topcik, Director of Research Collections
  Arjun Appadurai, Max Weber Global Professor         Anna Helgeson, Reader Services Librarian
  Jeffrey L. Collins, Professor                       Barbara Elam, Digital Collections Metadata
                                                    		     Librarian and Study Collection Manager
  Ivan Gaskell, Professor
                                                      Sebastian Moya, Technical Services and
  Aaron Glass, Associate Professor                  		     Systems Librarian
  Freyja Hartzell, Assistant Professor, Editor of     Chantal Suklow, Reference and Collections
		“West 86th: A Journal of Decorative Arts,        		 Librarian
        Design History, and Material Culture”
  Deborah L. Krohn, Associate Professor, 		         Gallery Staff and Office of the Director
		Coordinator for History and Theory of
        Museums, and Chair of Academic Programs       Emma Cormack, Associate Curator
  Meredith B. Linn, Assistant Professor 		            Eric Edler, Exhibitions Registrar
  François Louis, Professor                           Alexander Gruen, Chief Preparator
  Michele Majer, Assistant Professor                  Earl Martin, Associate Curator
  Jennifer L. Mass, Andrew W. Mellon Professor of     Izabella (Elwart) Mujica, Executive Assistant to
		      Cultural Heritage Science                   		       the Director
  Caspar Meyer, Professor, Director of Masters        Laura Microulis, Research Curator
		Studies, Editor of “West 86th: 		                  Ama Codjoe, Consulting Director of Equity and
        A Journal of Decorative Arts, Design       		 Inclusion
         History, and Material Culture”
  Peter N. Miller, Dean and Professor               Department of Marketing, Communications, and
  Andrew Morrall, Professor                         Design
  Nina Stritzler-Levine, Professor of Curatorial      Amy Estes, Director of Marketing and
		Practice, Director of Focus Project              		 Communications
         Exhibitions                                  Laura Grey, Art Director
  Drew Thompson, Associate Professor                  Jocelyn Lau, Designer

Hellyn Teng, Web Manager
 Maggie Walter, Coordinator of Marketing and

Public Programs
  Emily Reilly, Director of Public Engagement /
		       Associate Gallery Director
  Carla Repice, Senior Manager of Education,
		       Engagement, and Interpretation
  Nadia Rivers, Coordinator of Public Programs,
		       Education, and Engagement

  Benjamin Krevolin, Chief Advancement Office
  Ruth Epstein, Manager of Institutional Giving and
  Minna Lee, Associate Director of Development
  Madeline Warner, Development Associate

Operations and Administration
  Tim Ettenheim, Chief Operating Officer
  James Congregane, Director of Facilities
		      Management and Operations
  Chandler Small, Director of Security
  Rita Niyazova, Director of Finance
  Samantha Baron, Director of Administration
  Mohammed Alam, Budget Manager
  Miao Chen, Accounting Manager

Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson
  Dean of Graduate Studies: 845.758.7895
  Financial Aid Office: 845.758.7525
  International Student Advisor: 845.758.7430
  Stevenson Library (information):
		      845.758.7500 x144
  Registrar: 845.758.7458
  Student Accounts: 845.758.7520


Graduate Committee
The Graduate Committee (GC) is charged with the            Joint Committee
formulation of academic policy, curriculum and             The Joint Committee is comprised of representa-
program development, faculty recruitment and               tives from the students, faculty, and administration.
evaluation, academic evaluation of students, and           Any student with a non-academic grievance or com-
consideration of student petitions and proposals           plaint should first approach the Graduate Commit-
as detailed below. The Graduate Committee also             tee, which receives, investigates, and resolves com-
receives, investigates, and resolves student com-          plaints. The Joint Committee serves as an avenue
plaints. If a student is not satisfied with the deci-      of appeal and should be utilized only in the event
sion of the Graduate Committee on a non-academic           that a satisfactory resolution has not been achieved
matter, he or she may appeal to the Joint Commit-          in a student affairs matter. The Joint Committee
tee (see below). In academic matters, the appeals          convenes only when necessary to address matters
process ends with the Graduate Committee. The              that fall under its jurisdiction, handling complaints
Dean serves as chair of the Graduate Committee.            in a timely fashion. Bard Graduate Center assures
                                                           that no adverse action will be taken against any stu-
The members of the Graduate Committee for                  dent wishing to file a complaint. The Dean convenes
2021–22 are:                                               the Joint Committee, and the Vice President for
Susan Weber, Founder and Director                          Academic Affairs is also a member of the commit-
Peter N. Miller, Dean and Professor                        tee. In the case of academic complaints, such as
Jeffrey L. Collins, Professor                              questions of plagiarism, qualifying paper reviews,
Ivan Gaskell, Professor                                    and dismissal from the program, the decision of
Andrew Morrall, Professor                                  the Graduate Committee is final. In other matters,
Caspar Meyer, Professor and Director of Masters            decisions made by the Joint Committee are final.
         Studies                                           When all internal avenues have been exhausted, the
Aaron Glass, Associate Professor                           student may wish to investigate the New York State
Deborah L. Krohn, Associate Professor, Coordinator         Education Department’s complaint registry.
	for History and Theory of Museums, and
         Chair of Academic Programs                        Special note about policies and petitions:
François Louis, Professor
Drew Thompson, Associate Professor                         Some of the policies and procedures below require
Ittai Weinryb, Associate Professor and Director of         approval from the Graduate Committee or its del-
         Doctoral Studies                                  egated representatives, based on the submission
Catherine Whalen, Associate Professor                      of forms or petitions. All required forms are avail-
Freyja Hartzell, Assistant Professor                       able from the Office of Academic Programs and
Meredith B. Linn, Assistant Professor                      on the website. A full list appears below, with an
Michele Majer, Assistant Professor                         indication of where to submit each form. Some pe-
Jennifer L. Mass, Andrew W. Mellon Professor of            titions must be signed and approved by an advisor
         Cultural Heritage Science                         in advance of submission. Students must submit
Nina Stritzler-Levine, Professor of Curatorial             their petitions to a week before
         Practice, Director of Focus Project Exhibitions   the date of the meeting. Petitions not filed by these
Annissa Malvoisin, Bard Graduate Center / 		               deadlines may not be considered. Please consult
	Brooklyn Museum Postdoctoral Fellow in the               with the Office of Academic Programs if you have
         Arts of Africa                                    any questions about petition submissions.
Soon Kai Poh, Conservation as a Human Science
         Fellow                                            Audit
Christian Crouch, Dean of Graduate Studies,                Consortium Course Registration*
         Bard College (ex officio)                         Dissertation Completion Enrollment*
                                                           Doctoral Dissertation Proposal*

Doctoral Field Exams/Directed Readings Proposal*
Independent Study*
Internship Forms
Qualifying Paper Proposal *
Travel and Research Funding Applications

 *These forms all need go to the GC for approval
and must be submitted to the Office of Academic
Programs as specified above. All other forms go
to the Academic Programs Office.

Academic Advisor                                          versus Incompletes, below), the student may be
Each MA and PhD student is assigned an aca-               dismissed from the program.
demic advisor prior to entering the program; for
details, see sections on each degree program              All MA students must have a 3.0 overall (cumula-
below. Students are encouraged to meet with their         tive) GPA in order to graduate. MA students whose
advisors regularly to discuss and evaluate their          cumulative GPA is less than 3.0 at the end of the
academic progress. In addition, MA students are           program are not eligible for the degree.
encouraged to consult the Director of Masters
Studies for advice at any time during their program       Appeals
of study. PhD students are encouraged to consult          Students have the right to appeal grades, or
the Director of Doctoral Studies. The Director of         decisions of a faculty member, to the Graduate
Admissions and Student Affairs and the Chair of           Committee. In all cases, a student should speak to
Academic Programs serve as additional sources             the faculty member first, and then to the Chair of
of academic advice and information to students            Academic Programs, and then the Dean, before fil-
in both programs. Subject to the degree-specific          ing a petition to the committee. The decision of the
terms below, students may change their academic           Graduate Committee is final in all such matters.
advisor by submitting an Advisor Change Request
form to the Office of Academic Programs.                  Attendance
                                                          Students are required to attend all of their sched-
Academic Probation                                        uled classes. Excessive absences (more than two
All students must meet minimum academic                   per course) and/or tardiness will be reflected in
standards as measured by grade point average              the grade awarded. Individual faculty members
(GPA) in order to remain in good academic stand-          may specify more stringent attendance policies,
ing. Students whose GPA falls below established           of which students should be notified at the first
thresholds in any given term will be placed on aca-       meeting of the course. If you are unsure of a faculty
demic probation. For MA students, this threshold          member’s attendance policy, you should ask about
is 3.0 (B); for PhD students the threshold is 3.5 (B+).   it at the first meeting of the class. Some classes do
Any student who fails more than one course in a           not allow any absences. It is the student’s responsi-
single term will be dismissed from the program.           bility to find out the absence policy for each class.

Scholarship and fellowship awards may be reduced          Audit
or removed by probationary status. Students on            A student may audit a course with the permission
academic probation are not eligible to apply for          of the instructor. The terms should be discussed
travel and research funding. Students on academic         with the instructor at the beginning of the course,
probation are not eligible to apply for or to take a      as not all courses allow auditors, and some in-
consortium class.                                         structors may require auditors to contribute to the
                                                          class. Students may attend single class sessions
In order to be removed from probation, the student        only with the instructor’s consent. Students who
must raise his or her GPA for the following academ-       wish to audit a course must submit a registration
ic term above the threshold and may not receive           form to the Office of Academic Programs. Upon
any grade below a C. Failure to meet these require-       successful completion of an official audit, an R will
ments will result in the student’s dismissal from         appear on the student’s transcript. Letter grades
the program.                                              will not be issued for audited courses. A student
                                                          may retake a previously audited course for a grade,
If an MA student on academic probation who is             but audits may not be converted to a credit-bear-
granted an incomplete fails to submit outstanding         ing course once the drop/add period has ended.
work within the period specified on the Petition for      Non-matriculated students (including consortium
an Incomplete (maximum 30 days; see Extensions            students) are not allowed to audit classes.

Clearance for the Degree                               Registration packets, including descriptions of
All students must be available for a review of their   courses offered for the academic term, a course
record in order to clear them for graduation. Bard     schedule, and a form for students to mark their
College grants degrees only once a year, in May,       preferred and/or required courses and alternates,
and the Academic Calendar lists the deadlines          will be sent to students in advance of registration.
for filing a request for a degree, if applicable.      An advisement gathering is held each term to allow
The Office of Academic Programs reviews and            students and instructors to discuss all courses
clears all candidates for the degree.                  prior to registration. Students must meet to review
                                                       their proposed program with their advisor, who
Consortium                                             must approve and sign their registration form.
Students may have the opportunity to take one          Signed forms must be submitted by email to
course per term at selected participating graduate between 9 am and 5
programs in New York City for credit toward their      pm on the day established for their cohort; forms
degree. Students enroll in these courses only with     are processed in the order received. Early and late
the approval of the Graduate Committee, by peti-       submissions will bounce back, and paper forms are
tion. The Graduate Committee retains the right to      not accepted.
limit the number of students enrolled off-campus,
and thus not all requests are approved. Bard           Course Cancellation
Graduate Center currently has arrangements with        A course may be cancelled if enrollment is insuf-
the Institute of Fine Arts at New York University;     ficient (typically, fewer than 3 students). Final
the Institute for the Study of the Ancient World       determination is made by the Chair of Academic
at New York University; the History of Design and      Programs.
Curatorial Studies program at Cooper Hewitt/
Parsons, The New School for Design; the Jewish         Course Closings
Theological Seminary; Columbia University; and         Depending on student interest, a course may fill up
the CUNY Graduate Center. Please note: we do           and close during the registration period. Students
not have an agreement with other programs at           will be notified when this happens, and they will
The New School, only the Cooper Hewitt pro-            be asked to make another selection. Wait lists are
gram; similarly, we do not have an agreement with      kept for classes that do fill, and students are noti-
other graduate programs at NYU, only IFA and           fied if a place opens. It is a good idea to always list
ISAW. Students in these consortium programs            a fifth and sixth class on any registration form with
also have the opportunity to take classes at Bard      a note making it clear that these are the alternate
Graduate Center, and register through the Office of    choices should a course be closed.
Academic Programs.
                                                       Course/Instructor Evaluations
Students need the approval of the Graduate             During the last week of each academic term,
Committee before consortium coursework is              students have the opportunity to evaluate their
undertaken. First semester MA students, and            courses and instructors. Students are encouraged
students on academic probation, are not eligible       to be candid and constructive in their comments.
to apply for or take a consortium course. Students     Evaluations are not accepted by the administration
may not take consortium courses if substantially       after the last week of classes. Copies of student
equivalent courses are offered here. Many con-         evaluations are mailed to instructors only after all
sortium courses also require the permission of         grades have been submitted.
the instructor. Columbia University requires all
students to demonstrate vaccinations before they       Course Requirements
enroll. Students may not take language classes at      Course requirements are established by each in-
a consortium institution for BGC credit.               structor and may include oral presentations, writ-
                                                       ten term papers, other individual or group projects,
Course Registration                                    and/or midterm and final examinations. Students
Students register for courses twice during the         must demonstrate an ability to conduct high-level
academic year. Registration is done by cohort          scholarly research and to write in accordance with
and by seniority, to give students with the least      stringent academic standards. Faculty members
time remaining in the program priority in choos-       return term papers, exams, and all other course
ing classes.Registration is generally conducted        work directly to students.
in late April or early May for the fall term, and
in late November for spring term. Dates will be
announced each term by the Office of Academic

Disabilities                                             Extensions vs. Incompletes
Students with disabilities that may affect their         Bard Graduate Center has two distinct mecha-
academic performance should to speak with the            nisms for granting students additional time to
Director of Admissions and Student Affairs at            complete coursework assigned during the aca-
the start of their time at Bard Graduate Center.         demic term. Neither is automatic, and both require
Students who need special considerations and/or          the formal consent of the instructor. These are the
accommodations must negotiate this in advance in         only mechanisms for altering coursework dead-
consultation with the Director of Admissions and         lines, and both have specific periods of validity and
Student Affairs, the Chair of Academic Programs,         expiration dates. It is essential that students un-
and the relevant instructor[s]. No accommodations        derstand the differences between them, as failure
can be granted without a prior recommendation            to observe the requirements below automatically
based on the review of materials submitted by a          removes a student from good standing and may
physician to Academic Programs office.                   result in dismissal from the program.

Drop/Add                                                 An EXTENSION is additional time given by an
The first week of term is a designated drop/add          instructor to a student to complete an assign-
week. Students may add or drop a course without          ment within a given academic term. It is not to be
penalty during this period by completing a Drop/         confused with an incomplete (I), below, which is
Add slip. The form requires the signature of the         only valid after the end of an academic term. An
faculty advisor. The exact dates of the Drop/Add         instructor may choose whether or not to grant an
period for each semester are published in the an-        extension, and in the interest of fairness to other
nual Academic Calendar. Courses dropped after            students who have completed the assignment on
this period are subject to Bard College’s Refund         time, faculty members are urged not to grant ex-
Policy as stated on the website (see “Tuition and        tensions except under extenuating circumstances.
Fees”; see also “Withdrawal from Course,” below).        Unless they have granted an extension, instructors
                                                         are not obliged to accept work handed in after the
For students who are considering a class that they       due date and may give such work a lower grade,
are not registered for, it is expected that they will    including zero credit. The period of the extension
notify the particular faculty member in advance of       must be agreed upon in advance with the instruc-
their intention to sit in on their first class.          tor, although it is recommended that in no case
                                                         should an extension of more than one week be
Many Bard Graduate Center classes have advance           given. In no case are extensions valid beyond the
requirements, such as reading assignments, for the       end of finals week. Any work outstanding at the
first meeting. When a student writes to a faculty        end of term requires an incomplete (see below).
member to let them know they plan to sit in on the
first session, they should ask if there is an assign-    An INCOMPLETE (I) is an official designation indi-
ment for the first meeting. Students are expected to     cating that a student has been given prior permis-
do all class preparation and to be fully ready for the   sion to submit work for a course after the end of a
first class, whether you are enrolled or not. Students   given academic term. All extensions expire on the
are welcome to “shop” a class, but they must be          last day of exam week, and an incomplete is the on-
prepared to be a full participant in that class.         ly mechanism through which work can be accepted
                                                         for credit after that day. Incompletes are not auto-
Students may not join a class after the first            matic, and students are restricted to one incom-
meeting; if a student is considering two classes,        plete per academic term. To obtain an incomplete,
he or she must attend the first session of each.         students must fill out a Petition for Incomplete,
                                                         which must be signed by the instructor and filed
Enrollment Status Change                                 with the Office of Academic Programs no later than
A student wishing to change from full-time to part-      the last day of finals week of the term. Instructors
time status or vice versa must make an appointment       are not obliged to grant a student’s petition. If all
with the Director of Admissions and Student Affairs      required work has not been submitted by the end
and complete an Enrollment Status Change form.           of term, and an incomplete has not been granted,
Please note: although a change from full-time to         instructors are obliged to fail the student or award
part-time status will likely reduce financial aid        a grade based on his or her partial fulfillment of the
awards, students who enroll part-time and then           requirements of the course. It is therefore incum-
move to full-time are not eligible for increased         bent on students to discuss their petitions with the
institutional fellowship or scholarship funding. For     instructor well in advance of the end of term.
specific requirements and restrictions, see sections
on MA and PhD Programs below.

Once granted, an incomplete is valid for a maxi-        two pages of text (500-600 words) to be translated
mum of 30 days beyond the end of exam week, or          by the student in a three-hour sitting, with the aid of
what ever earlier period is specified by the instruc-   a printed dictionary (students must bring their own).
tor on the Petition. If work has not been submit-       For specific requirements see sections on MA and
ted by this time, the status of I will be changed       PhD programs, below.
to the grade F on the student’s transcript, unless
the instructor specifies another default grade          Grades
based on the student’s partial fulfillment of the       The qualifying paper, the doctoral dissertation,
requirements for the course. This grade cannot be       internships, and the August Orientation Session
changed if the student submits the outstanding          are graded Pass/Fail. Letter grades are issued for
work after this deadline. Students taking consor-       all other courses according to the system below.
tium courses are bound by the policies governing        Plus (+) and minus (-) signs indicate a mark in the
Bard Graduate Center incompletes.                       upper and lower range of each grade range. The
                                                        grades A+, D+ and D- are not used. A final course
Financial Aid                                           grade of F cannot be changed by the instructor
Students are eligible for financial assistance in the   once assigned.
form of institutional aid and federal loans. Students
should consult with the Director of Admissions and      90-99% = A = excellent
Student Affairs on matters related to their financial   80-89% = B = good
aid packaging.                                          70-79% = C = pass
                                                        60-69% = D = low pass
Institutional Aid                                       below 60% = F = fail
Institutional financial aid awards are made at the
time of acceptance into the program. Aid may            Grade point averages (GPA) are calculated accord-
consist of scholarships (tuition remission), fel-       ing to the following system:
lowships (stipends), and/or campus employment.
Entering students who do not file a FAFSA, or who       A = 4.0
file a FAFSA after the deadline, may not be eligible    A- = 3.7
for aid consideration. International students must      B+ = 3.3
complete the College Board International Student        B = 3.0
Financial Aid Application. Only full-time students      B- = 2.7
are eligible for institutional aid, and students must   C+ = 2.3
remain full-time in order to receive such aid. MA       C = 2.0
students are only eligible for institutional aid for    C- = 1.7
two years. Institutional aid is renewed contingent      D = 1.0
on the maintenance of good academic standing in         F = 0.0
the program and may be canceled or reduced for
students on academic probation.                         Independent Study
                                                        Independent study affords students an
Federal Financial Aid                                   opportunity to earn graduate credit by conducting
Eligibility for financial assistance from the federal   independent research in an area of particular
government, usually in the form of loans, requires      interest. Students must ask faculty members to
that a student maintain a 2.0 (C) grade point aver-     serve as advisors to guide their work and assess
age. Students are advised that all federal loans        the project upon completion. Faculty members
have a defined repayment schedule and that once         are not obligated to take on independent studies,
an MA student completes coursework, his or her          and the responsibility for developing the bibliog-
loans cannot be deferred beyond the grace period        raphy and pursuing the proposed study lies with
mandated by federal guidelines. Any questions           the student. Students considering independent
about federal loan repayments should be directed        studies are advised to consult with the proposed
to the Financial Aid Office at Bard College.            faculty member well in advance of the registration
                                                        period. Independent studies are proposed in lieu of
Foreign Language Proficiency                            a class and awarded 3 credits and a letter grade.
All students must demonstrate research profi-           First semester MA students may not do an inde-
ciency in a foreign language. Students demonstrate      pendent study, and no student may do more than
competence by taking a translation examination.         one independent study in a semester. A student
The examinations, offered in August and during the      may not ordinarily take both an independent study
fall and spring term, are administered by the Office    and a consortium course in the same semester. An
of Academic Programs and consist of approximately       independent study petition, completed and signed

by both the student and the proposed project advi-           provided in footnotes, endnotes, or parentheti-
sor, must be approved by the Graduate Committee              cal documentation, called in-noting.
in advance of registering for the course.
                                                             4. All ideas and data that are not your own
Leaves of Absence                                            must also be attributed in a footnote or end-
Leaves of absence may be granted upon success-               note to the particular source from which they
ful petition to the Graduate Committee. For specific         were obtained.
requirements and restrictions, see sections on MA
and PhD Programs below.                                      5. Bibliographies must list all sources you
                                                             used for your paper. If you have doubts as to
In extraordinary circumstances, the Graduate                 whether you are providing adequate documen-
Committee will entertain requests for emergency              tation of your sources, be sure to discuss this
medical leaves if temporary health conditions                matter with your professor before preparing
make it impossible for a student to complete his             your final draft.
or her academic work. Such requests must be
fully documented by attending physicians and can             6. Students may not submit the same or sub-
only be granted by the Graduate Committee. They              stantially the same paper, or portions thereof,
are not automatic, and the duration of leave, the            for more than one course. In cases of possible
schedule for resuming academic work, and other               overlap of topics, students must consult all
financial and logistical arrangements are subject            relevant instructors in advance to work out a
to the determination of the Graduate Committee.              sensible division and/or secure permission to
                                                             reuse or duplicate material or text submitted
The Graduate Committee will also entertain                   for another course. Failure to secure such
reasonable requests for family leave if changed              advance approval will result in the withhold-
family circumstances make it impossible for a                ing of credit for any work that is the same or
student to complete his or her academic work in              substantially the same as that submitted in
the normal timetable outlined in this handbook.              another course.
Students on leave pay a flat “Leave Fee,” and are
not considered active students during this period.       Penalties for Plagiarism
Library access may be impacted.
                                                             1. Failure in the course in which plagiarism
Plagiarism                                                   occurs and loss of financial aid.
To plagiarize is to “steal and pass off [the ideas or
words of another] as one’s own: use [a created pro-          2. Denial of the degree, in the case of plagiarism
duction] without crediting the source . . . present as       in a Qualifying Paper or a doctoral dissertation.
new and original an idea or product derived from an
existing source” (Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary).          3. Cases of deliberate deception will result
The faculty of Bard Graduate Center regards                  in immediate expulsion from the program.
plagiarism, deliberate or inadvertent, as a serious
breach of ethical conduct that carries the most          Right of a Hearing
serious of consequences. All students, at both the       Any student accused of plagiarism or of writing for
MA and PhD level, must be aware of the following:        another’s use may request a hearing before the
                                                         Graduate Committee. The student must request
     1. All work you submit must be your own             this hearing within 24 hours after written notifica-
     scholarly production. You must provide clear        tion of the charge. The decision of the Graduate
     documentation of all sources from which you         Committee is final.
     derive information and ideas, and the final
     arrangement of the material must be substan-        Adopted by the Bard Community, May 14, 1952.
     tially original.                                    Adapted for the Master of Arts Program of Bard
                                                         Graduate Center, August 5, 1994. Updated and
     2. When doing preparatory research, you             extended to the doctoral program, 2014.
     should record a full bibliographical citation for
     each of your sources, recording page referenc-      Study Abroad/Exchange Programs
     es for all notes taken, not just for quotations.    Bard Graduate Center has an exchange program
                                                         with both the Humboldt University in Berlin and
     3. All phrases, sentences, and excerpts that        the Royal College of Art in London. Students from
     are not your own must be identified with quo-       those two institutions (along with the Ecole du
     tation marks or indentation, and the sources        Louvre) may attend Bard Graduate Center, and

doctoral candidates from Bard Graduate Center            directed to the Chair of Academic Programs. For
may apply to research at either Humboldt or the          specific requirements and restrictions, see sec-
RCA. For information and eligibility consult with        tions on MA and PhD programs below.
the Chair of Academic Programs. Students register
through Bard Graduate Center and are responsible         Travel and Research
for their own housing while abroad, as well as cov-      A limited amount of money is available to students
ering the cost of the student visa, if needed.           in both the MA and PhD program to assist students
                                                         in traveling for research purposes and to pres-
Term Paper Style and Format                              ent research at academic conferences. Funding
Style must conform to the guidelines published in        is competitive and not guaranteed. There are
the most recent edition of The Chicago Manual of         three rounds of application considerations each
Style, an online version of which is accessible via      academic year, typically in October, December,
the library home page. Endnotes in Bard Graduate         and April. Exact dates will be announced by the
Center’s journal West 86th may serve as a model          Academic Programs Office along with instruc-
for this style. Spelling should conform to the first     tions. Generally, applications are prioritized in the
preferences (American, not British) in Merriam-          following order: doctoral dissertation research;
Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary (11th edition, 2003)     qualifying paper research; PhD student travel for
and, for words not found there, the unabridged           academic conferences; MA student travel for aca-
Webster’s Third New International Dictionary;            demic conferences.
Webster’s New Geographical Dictionary (1984); and
Webster’s New Biographical Dictionary. There is          Withdrawal from a Course
also a style sheet, which is given out at Orientation.   Students may withdraw from a course by submit-
Punctuation should also conform to American, not         ting a Withdrawal Slip, which must be signed by the
British, usage.                                          instructor of the course from which the student is
                                                         withdrawing. There is no charge to withdraw from a
Transcripts                                              course during the Drop/Add period; after the Drop/
An official transcript will be issued upon written       Add period ends, a withdrawal fee applies (consult
request from a student to the Registrar of Bard          the Office of Academic Programs for current fees),
College in Annandale-on-Hudson. This request may         and students must request special permission
be made by email via Grades        from the instructor and the Chair of Academic
are not released by telephone or via email. Official     Programs. There is no refund for withdrawal after
transcripts are only available through the Bard          the date specified in the Academic Calendar.
College registrar’s office. Unofficial transcripts are   Students may not drop a course that they are fail-
available from the Office of Academic Programs.          ing. Withdrawal from a course will appear on the
                                                         student’s transcript with the designation W. Failure
Transfer Credits                                         to follow the formal withdrawal procedure will re-
Subject to the parameters described below,               sult in a grade of F in the course. An F designation
students may petition the Graduate Committee to          cannot be changed.
transfer relevant credits from other institutions
of higher education for credit at Bard Graduate          Withdrawal from the Program
Center. The intent is primarily to acknowledge prior     If a student in good academic standing wishes
work in graduate-level courses that overlaps with        to withdraw from either the Master of Arts or the
the range of courses offered here or available for       doctoral program, the student must notify the
credit through the consortium. No credit is given        Academic Programs Office in writing. Any individual
for language courses.                                    who has withdrawn and wishes to reenter the pro-
                                                         gram must apply for re-matriculation. This is only
Students wishing to transfer credits are respon-         possible for one year after withdrawal. After that
sible for submitting the following documentation         time, a student must re-apply for admission.
to the Academic Programs Office at least one week
before the meeting of the Graduate Committee:
1) a description of the course and how it relates
to their program of study; 2) an official transcript;
3) a syllabus or other information detailing topics
covered, readings assigned, and the methods of
assessment; 4) a summary of class time/contact
hours; 5) brief biographies (or a curriculum vitae)
of the instructor[s]; 6) copies of written work
produced. Questions about procedure should be

MA Program

The degree of Master of Arts in Decorative Arts,         will be accepted for administrative purposes.
Design History, Material Culture is awarded upon         Students wishing to change their academic advi-
successful completion of 48 credits, which must          sors before formal approval of the QP topic must
include the following:                                   submit a signed Change of Advisor form to the
                                                         Office of Academic Programs.
  – August Orientation Session
  – 500/501. Objects in Context: A Survey of the         Academic Progress
    Decorative Arts, Design History, and Material        Full-time MA students are expected to complete
    Culture and its attendant seminar 510. Writing       their course work in four academic terms, plus
    Objects (two semesters)                              the intervening summer, over two years. Full-time
  – 502. Approaches to the Object (one semester)         students in their first year register for Orientation
  – 515. Seminar Series                                  (1 credit) and four courses plus Writing Objects
  – Eleven elective courses, two of which must be        (13 credits) for the fall semester, and 4 courses (12
    designated “pre-1800” and one of which must          credits) in the spring semester. Students then reg-
    be designated “non-Western” (students may            ister for 4 courses (12 credits) for the fall semester
    also fulfill this distribution requirement through   of their second year, and for 3 courses (9 credits).
    an Independent Study or consortium class)
  – Digital Project requirement                          Part-time students must attend all sections of the
  – Internship                                           Orientation Session in August of their first year.
  – Qualifying Paper; and participation in the end-      Thereafter, part-time students are required to take
    of-year QP Symposium                                 a minimum of 6 credits (two courses) in each fall
  – All students must also pass a foreign language       and spring term. Part-time students must take
    proficiency exam                                     both Objects in Context and Approaches to the
                                                         Object in their first year.
All the above requirements must be fulfilled for
the degree to be granted. If a student fails any of      Bard Travel Program
the required/core courses, he or she must repeat         Travel conditions permitting, the Bard Travel
and pass that course when it is next offered in          Program (an annual faculty-led international study
order to be eligible for the MA degree. All MA stu-      trip) is open to all first-year MA students. Partici-
dents must have a 3.0 overall (cumulative) GPA in        pation is contingent on a student’s satisfactory
order to receive the MA degree. MA students whose        work during the first year, and approval to partici-
cumulative GPA is less than 3.0 at the end of the        pate is at the discretion of the Graduate Commit-
program are not eligible for the degree.                 tee. The Graduate Committee reserves the right to
                                                         withhold or withdraw permission based on unsatis-
Academic Advisor                                         factory academic progress or performance, or any
Each student has an academic advisor from the            other medical or behavioral conditions that in its
regular faculty, whose signature is required on          judgment may impair a student’s ability to partici-
registration forms and some petitions. Entering MA       pate safely in and/or contribute effectively to this
students are assigned an academic advisor prior          physically demanding experience. Given the nature
to entering the program, and they may choose to          of the program, the Graduate Committee must also
retain that advisor for the duration of their stud-      be satisfied that all participants will be responsible
ies. However, as students develop their own area         and effective ambassadors for Bard Graduate
of specialization and gain formal approval of their      Center in all respects. Details about the trips are
Qualifying Paper topic from the Graduate Com-            typically announced at the end of fall semester.
mittee, it is typical for the designated QP advisor
to become the academic advisor. Once the QP has          While on the program, attendance at all official
been approved, either the signature of the initial       activities is mandatory. Students may not ‘opt out’
academic advisor or of the designated QP advisor         of events.

Distribution Requirements                               who do not pass the first diagnostic exam have the
All MA students must satisfy a distribution             opportunity for intensive language study before a
requirement in their elective coursework in order       second exam is given at the conclusion of orienta-
to complete their degree. Two courses must be           tion. Students who do not satisfy the requirement
designated “pre-1800” and one course must be            during August orientation have opportunities in
designated “non-Western.” Each semester the             the fall and spring semester to sit the language
course listing indicates which classes satisfy          exam. All full-time MA students must satisfy the
these requirements. Some classes may offer              language requirement before the start of their
conditional satisfaction, based upon a final paper      second year in the program (part-time students
or project. Independent Studies and Consortium          have an additional year to complete this require-
classes may satisfy distribution requirements,          ment). If a student has not satisfied the language
but only if approved by the Graduate Committee.         requirement by the appointed time, the faculty will
Students are responsible for keeping track of their     recommend a course of action which may include
requirements but may consult with their academic        suspension from the program until the requirement
advisors and the Director of Admissions and             is fulfilled or reduction in course load from full to
Student Affairs to confirm their status.                part-time.

MA students must also complete a “digital project”      Internships
requirement. This may be fulfilled at any point         All MA students must complete an internship. A
during the program by incorporating a digital           student’s required internship is normally under-
component into final course work. This may take a       taken in the summer after the first year of study.
number of different shapes including an exhibition      Internship forms may be obtained from the Office
design, a web-based project, a digital or interactive   of Academic Programs and must be approved prior
aspect to a submitted essay, etc. Students should       to undertaking work at a sponsoring institution.
consult with the individual faculty of courses to       Students will work with the Director of Masters
discuss whether a proposed project might fulfill        Studies in securing an internship. This process
this requirement. Not all classes will offer the        takes place in the late fall of their entering year. By
opportunity for a significant digital research          the time students register in April for the follow-
project; this requirement may not be fulfilled          ing fall, all summer internships should be formally
through the digital work done in Approaches to the      approved. There may be opportunities for several
Object.                                                 internships. Applications for these may be com-
                                                        petitive, in which case they will be decided by the
Enrollment Status Change                                faculty. Students selected must demonstrate they
A student wishing to change from full-time to part-     have appropriate health coverage, and, where re-
time status or vice versa must make an appoint-         quired, can cover the cost of a student visa. Limited
ment with the Director of Admissions and Student        and competitive funding for internships outside of
Affairs and complete an Enrollment Status Change        New York City may be available. Academic Pro-
form. MA students who enroll part-time and then         grams will announce any funding opportunities.
move to full-time are not eligible for increased
institutional fellowship or scholarship funding.          Internship Proposal
                                                          Internship petition forms must be completed by
Financial Aid                                             the student and the internship sponsor and sub-
Financial aid awards are made at the time of              mitted to the Office of Academic Programs.
acceptance. Institutional aid is limited and avail-       A letter from the host institution must accom-
able to full-time students only, and for two years        pany the form. Internships should be approved
only. Aid for the second year is renewed at the           by late spring when students register for the fall
same level after a review in the late spring of the       semester.
student’s academic performance in the program.
Students must fill out a FAFSA by January 15 for          Project Report
financial aid renewal consideration. (See also “Fi-       Upon completion of the internship, the student
nancial Aid” in General Academic Policies, above.)        must submit to the Director of Masters Stud-
                                                          ies a three- to five- page report of the project
Foreign Language Proficiency                              or work undertaken, together with a copy of any
MA students are required to demonstrate reading           written or other document (e.g., an educational
knowledge of French, German, Italian, or Spanish,         brochure, docent’s plan, inventory, or website)
or another language by petition. Incoming MA stu-         produced during the internship. Generally, this
dents are required to take a foreign language pro-        report should cover day to day responsibilities,
ficiency exam during the August orientation. Those        major projects undertaken, a reflection on the

internship’s influence on your academic work,        QP is less important for this degree requirement
  and a consideration of the experience as profes-     than the project’s fitness for improvement through
  sional development. In addition, the internship      further research, rethinking, and rewriting, as well
  sponsor will complete a standardized evaluation      as its suitability for demonstrating mastery of aca-
  form and submit it to the Director of Masters        demic skills. Although the presentation format and
  Studies. All internship reports and evaluations      scale or focus of research may change between
  are due within one month of completion of the        the original paper and the QP (such as a switch
  internship.                                          among written, digital, or exhibition platforms, or
                                                       more detailed attention to one aspect of an existing
Internships are graded on a Pass/Fail basis, as        argument), the QP must be substantially based on
recommended by the host institution/supervisor.        previously completed coursework. All students are
                                                       required to present a brief summary of their find-
Leaves of Absence                                      ings at the end-of-tear QP Symposium, held shortly
MA students in good academic standing who              before commencement.
wish to take a leave of absence from the program
must submit a request in writing to the Director of      Proposal Process for the Qualifying Paper
Admissions and Student Affairs. A maintenance-           Qualifying Papers must be based on a
of-status fee of $110 is charged to those students       graded research paper or equivalent digital
on academic leave. This fee is levied per leave          project produced in a regular course or in an
request, whether for a semester or a full year. If a     independent study with a Bard Graduate Center
student does not return within one academic year,        professor. The paper or project to be adapted
she or he is considered to have withdrawn from the       as a QP should be selected in consultation with
program and must apply for re-admission. Time            the student’s instructors, academic advisor,
spent on an approved leave is not counted toward         and the Chair of Academic Programs. Students
the time limit (two years for full-time students and     submit a proposal to the Graduate Committee
four years for part-time students) for the comple-       for approval. This proposal should be submitted
tion of MA degree requirements. See also “Leaves         at the May meeting at the end of year one, or the
of Absence” in General Academic Policies, above.         September, October, or November meeting at
                                                         the beginning of year two for full-time students.
Transfer Credits                                         (For Digital and Exhibition QP deadlines, see
A maximum of 6 credits from other institutions may       below.) Students are encouraged to submit their
be applied toward the Master of Arts degree, upon        proposals as early as possible, especially if they
successful petition to the Graduate Committee.           wish to apply for travel grant consideration. The
For general provisions, see “Transfer Credits” in        proposal provides information about the original
General Academic Policies, above.                        seminar paper that will be developed into a
                                                         Qualifying Paper and revision and expansion
Qualifying Paper                                         strategies. The instructor of the class from which
The Qualifying Paper, submitted near the end of          the paper stems typically becomes the advisor
the student’s second / final year, is the capstone       for the QP. The Graduate Committee may appoint
project to the MA degree. It is intended to demon-       an advisor from the regular faculty in cases of
strate advanced mastery of the scholarly trade by        QPs arising from papers originally written for
showcasing the academic skills perfected at Bard         a doctoral candidate or other instructors on
Graduate Center. These include but are not limited       term appointments. The Graduate Committee
to the identification of an appropriate research         also assigns a secondary reader for the QP,
topic; location, analysis, and accurate citation of      who may be any member of the faculty. The
relevant primary and secondary sources; construc-        student is permitted to suggest a reader, but
tion of a clear and compelling scholarly argument;       the final determination rests with the Graduate
correct spelling, grammar, punctuation, format-          Committee. The Qualifying Paper proposal form
ting, etc, that conforms to the specific guidelines      is available online or from the Office of Academic
below (see “Form of the Qualifying Paper”).              Programs.

Because the faculty believe that the quality of          Preparation of the Qualifying Paper
academic work is significantly enhanced through          Additional research for the preparation of the
rigorous revision rarely possible in the space of a      QP may begin during the summer between the
single term, the QP is not a new research project        first and second year. There is limited travel
but a reworking and/or expansion of a graded proj-       and research funding for these purposes, on a
ect previously undertaken in a BGC course. For this      competitive basis; information on how and when
reason, the particular topic, field, or area, of the     to apply will be announced at the beginning of

each academic year by the Office of Academic           Qualifying Papers must be arranged in the fol-
Programs. During the fall semester the student         lowing order. Pages printed in italics are optional:
works on the QP under the guidance of his or her       Title Page, Dedication, Table of Contents,
advisor. The QP must be completed in the spring        Abstract, List of Illustrations (with sources), List
semester of the second year (or in the student’s       of Tables, Foreword, Preface, Acknowledgments,
fourth semester, in the case of full-time students     List of Abbreviations, Chronology, Text of the
who have taken a leave of absence, at a date           QP (with footnotes at the bottom of the page,
determined by the Graduate Committee). The             if used), Appendices, Endnotes (if used),
QP must be submitted to the Office of Academic         Illustrations, Glossary, Bibliography, Index
Programs by the date established each year
(generally in early April). It is strongly suggested   Digital Qualifying Papers
that students establish a series of interim            Students also have the option of submitting a
deadlines with their advisors to ensure timely         digital project in lieu of a conventional QP. Digital
completion and revision of the QP. Students            QPs must meet the same rigorous academic
must follow whatever guidelines are set by their       and intellectual standards as regular QPs and
QP advisors as to the amount of time required for      demonstrate an equivalent mastery of both the
marking the completed draft. If students do not        content and tools of advanced scholarship in the
observe these guidelines, advisors may not be          human sciences. Because a digital QP may pose
able to provide advice or assistance with the QP       significantly greater challenges to prepare and
prior to submission.                                   polish than a traditional QP, students consider-
                                                       ing this track must already possess significant
Form of the Qualifying Paper                           digital skills relevant to the proposed work. They
The text of the QP should be 8,000-10,000 words        must also obtain the advance permission and
in length, exclusive of foot- or endnotes, ap-         support of relevant faculty and of the Director of
pendices, and bibliography. QPs over this limit        the Digital Media Lab and submit a supplemen-
may not be accepted by the Graduate Committee          tary proposal form with these signatures and
and are ineligible for awards or prizes. Margins       a description of the student’s previous digital
must be 1” at the top and right side, 11⁄4” at the     training and software platforms needed to pro-
bottom, and 11⁄2” at the left. Pages should be         duce and view the QP. Digital QP proposals must
numbered in the upper right corner: lower case         be submitted for consideration by the Graduate
Roman numerals should be used for the front            Committee no later than the October meeting
matter, beginning with the first page after the        of the student’s third [full-time] semester. The
title page (which is not numbered), and Arabic         expectation is that, within the limits of current
numerals should be used beginning with the first       technology, digital QPs be able to be viewed and
page of the actual text and continuing through all     archived on an equivalent basis as paper QPs.
back matter. The type face should be clear and         The particular platform in which the Digital QP
easy to read, the equivalent of Courier 10 cpi or      is created will determine the permanent form in
12 point Times Roman; a letter-quality printer         which it will be submitted and archived.
should be used. The body of the text should
be double-spaced. Footnotes/endnotes, back             Exhibition Qualifying Papers
matter, captions, etc., may be single-spaced.          A third option allows students to present their
Students may choose to use either footnotes or         research in the form of an exhibition proposal,
endnotes as agreed with their QP advisor. The          and to demonstrate practical and theoretical
entire QP must be printed single-sided.                expertise in exhibition conception, design, and
                                                       display. Like the written QP, the topic will emerge
Citations, bibliographic references, and gen-          from a term paper. Word counts may vary with
eral considerations of style should follow those       the nature of the exhibition project and may
outlined in the current edition of The Chicago         exceed the length of the research paper format
Manual of Style, an electronic version of which        with the advisors approval. All those wishing
may be accessed via the library home page.             to pursue this option must take the “Exhibition
The form of the title page should conform to the       as Medium” course in the fall semester of the
sample attached to these guidelines; Illustra-         second year. (The course will introduce students
tions may be in the form of photographic prints,       to the key elements of the Exhibition QP that will
high-quality photocopies, or scanned images. Il-       form parts of the final submission. It will include
lustrations must include figure numbers keyed to       training in and use of Sketch-Up software and
the text, with full captions identifying the source    introduce students to concepts and practicali-
of each image.                                         ties of exhibition design.) The finished QP will
                                                       comprise: 1. An essay, conceived as a catalogue

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