Teaching visual arts in a university modern languages syllabus

Author: Matthew Treherne

© Matthew Treherne, University of Leeds


This website provides the full presentations (as MP3 files) and PowerPoint slides from the National Workshop on Teaching Visual Arts in a University Modern Languages Syllabus, which took place on Friday 23rd November, 2007 in St Catharine's College, Cambridge.


MP3, PowerPoint slides

Access to materials

Visit the National Workshop on Teaching Visual Arts in a University Modern Languages Syllabus website


As undergraduate courses in modern languages become increasingly interdisciplinary, a growing number of students are following modules and papers which study the visual arts. This national workshop brought together academics from modern languages departments who teach visual art from a range of national and historical contexts. By exploring the particular challenges and opportunities encountered in teaching the visual arts to students of modern languages, it enabled the sharing of best practice and the exchange of ideas, and will establish a network of colleagues working in this area.

Specific themes addressed by the workshop included:

  • What models exist for integrating the study of the visual arts into modern languages syllabi?
  • How do we teach the techniques of art analysis within the constraints of individual modules/courses?
  • What place can, or should, art theory have in our teaching of the visual arts?
  • What can the teaching of visual arts within a modern languages syllabus offer that is distinctive from other study contexts?
  • What resources are already available to support our teaching of the visual arts, and which new resources might need to be developed?
  • The workshop was based around short informal presentations by colleagues, addressing these themes and discussing particular examples. It was organised by Matthew Treherne (Department of Italian, University of Leeds), Emma Wagstaff (Department of French, University of Birmingham), and Abigail Brundin (Department of Italian, University of Cambridge).