News - GU Announces New Major in Liberal Studies

GU Announces New Major in Liberal Studies

By Carla Morris

library-webGreenville University is pleased to announce the addition of a new major program of study for undergraduates. Beginning fall 2020, students can opt for a four-year degree path that leads to a bachelor of science in liberal studies.

The new program, available in online or face-to-face format, will integrate coursework from multiple departments and disciplines. It will allow each student the flexibility to tailor his or her course load toward a range of specific interests, potentially combining subjects that would not typically fall under one major or program.

GU created the liberal studies major in response to research which indicated interest in such a program within the GU region, particularly for online learners.

Dean of the School of Arts & Sciences Teresa Holden said the new offering will appeal to students:

  • who have broad interests.
  • who are curious about many subjects. 
  • who enjoy connecting what they learn in one area with what they learn in other areas.

Students will engage in a broad range of topics, methodologies, and skills. In addition to completing GU’s general education requirements, they will earn 32 credit-hours across a spectrum of subjects that include:

  • the arts and humanities, 
  • social sciences or business, 
  • math or global language, 
  • lab sciences or creative writing, and 
  • a selection of upper division electives.

Facilitates Interests In Stem Or Humanitiesclass-web

“The degree offers breadth of perspective on the world and skills that come from a variety of academic disciplines,” said Holden. “We have constructed the degree [program] in such a way that students can focus in a STEM direction or in a humanities direction.”

Guided by an advisor, each student will begin the program by customizing a course plan and developing a statement of intent that identifies goals unique to that student. 

An internship built into the program allows students to apply classroom learning to workplace challenges and gives them valuable experiences they can reference on their resumes and in job interviews with hiring managers.

Developing Students, Serving Employers

Students are not the only beneficiaries of liberal and applied learning; employers benefit as well. Since 2006, four national surveys conducted for the American Association of Colleges & Universities (AACU) have shown that employers hiring new graduates value broad learning and skills that apply across multiple fields.

Hiring.jpgA summary of results from the AACU’s 2015 survey states, “Nearly all employers (91 percent) agree that for career success, ‘a candidate’s demonstrated capacity to think critically, communicate clearly, and solve complex problems is more important than his or her undergraduate major.’”

Broad learning experiences of the kind integrated into GU’s liberal studies program also address other employer values:

  • Solving problems with persons who hold differing perspectives
  • Understanding of societies and countries outside of the U.S.
  • Teamwork
  • Ethical decision making
  • Applying knowledge in “real-world” settings (e.g., senior capstone projects, internships)

To learn more about GU’s program leading to a bachelor of science in liberal studies, contact Dean of the School of Arts & Sciences Teresa Holden, [email protected].


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When you help fund a scholarship, you help one more student access Christ-centered learning in the liberal arts, sciences, and professional studies. Thank you for giving.

This story was published on March 26, 2020

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