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Liberal Arts

_L7Y5160.JPGThe College of Liberal Arts is transforming how faculty conduct research in the humanities and social sciences, how instructors teach, and how students learn. Our active learning experiences with faculty experts emphasize critical thinking, effective communication, and preparation for engaged citizenship--transferrable skills that prepare students for lifelong learning and tomorrow’s careers.

Our faculty and students are committed to:

  • Conducting research that matters, such as studying the effects of PTSD, understanding local and global culture, or predicting economic decision-making.
  • Engaging in transformational teaching and learning, where students gain hands-on experience by cataloging the thousand-year-old remains of our ancestors or using the Humanities Visualization Space to access the world’s most influential documents.
  • Cultivating a welcoming and inclusive environment by tailoring our curriculum to ensure that every member of our faculty, staff, and student body feels valued and welcomed.
  • Engaging in civically responsible outreach efforts such as Aggie Agora, which facilitates discussions on how to be an engaged citizen in a democratic society; Common Ground, a reading initiative that brings together all incoming Liberal Arts students around an important issue; and the college’s Regents Scholars Initiative, which focuses on the success of first-generation students.


Excellence: Students in the College of Liberal Arts

Many graduates with bachelor’s degrees in liberal arts continue their study at the graduate level in an academic discipline or in a profession such as medicine or law. The majority go directly into the job market. Studies have shown that liberal arts graduates are very successful in a variety of activities in commerce, business, or public service. Employers consistently affirm that the knowledge and skills Liberal Arts students have developed are valuable in today’s world. Liberal Arts students explore the achievements of humankind—past and present, individual and collective—by studying big questions of enduring significance. Whether in humanities or social sciences, courses and supporting activities in the liberal arts help students develop a sensitivity to the issues and build skills that can solve real-world problems.

Undergraduate education fosters independent thinking by giving students a broad educational foundation. Through innovative, high-impact learning environments, students acquire the critical and analytical skills to make sound judgments, the communication skills to interpret and explain their learning, and the abilities needed to engage productively in a democratic society.

Graduate education builds upon that foundation by honing research abilities in specialized areas of knowledge in the humanities and social sciences. They also learn how to be effective instructors of undergraduate students. The work graduate students accomplish fulfills the university’s land-grant mission to help the people of Texas and significantly affects the world.

The college contributes a majority of the university’s core curriculum, which requires all students to engage in specific studies intended to promote an awareness of their heritage, their culture, and their environment. Students who choose to major in the Liberal Arts will complete a curriculum designed to promote this breadth of understanding while providing a focus through concentration in one specific area of study in the humanities or social sciences. Some students choose an interdisciplinary emphasis that combines depth in more than one field.

Throughout a course of study in Liberal Arts, skills in critical thinking and in communication are developed, strengthened, and polished, making civically responsible graduates who will contribute to global understanding and prosperity.

Whether as a foundation for further study or as a broad education preparatory to advanced study or to positions in business, industry, and the public domain, a liberal arts degree has intrinsic worth and enduring value.

Excellence: Faculty in the College of Liberal Arts

Our distinguished faculty members include some of the most celebrated and honored in their fields. Their work has been recognized in venues from scholarly journals to the more popular outlets such as the New York Times and Science magazine. They have influenced state, federal, and global public policy and cultural understanding.

Our faculty measures effectiveness by their contributions to new knowledge in their fields, by their undergraduate and graduate students’ successes, and by their service to their professions locally, nationally, and globally. Faculty members’ research contributions to their fields of expertise are demonstrated by prestigious awards, publication in distinguished scholarly journals, and professional leadership on and off campus. Faculty contributions to undergraduate teaching excellence are measured by their ability to translate their areas of research expertise into the foundational knowledge and skills needed for lifelong learning and personal and professional success. Faculty success in graduate student development is measured by their students’ research recognitions through awards and publications, success in teaching or mentoring undergraduate students, and professional success after graduation. In both undergraduate and graduate education, faculty assist in students’ successful retention and timely graduation.