Liberal Studies

The University of Dubuque Liberal Studies major requires students complete, in addition to the Core Curriculum, a minimum of 36 credit hours in two concentrations that include at least 12 credits in each concentration and 15 credit hours of 300-level and above courses. The upper level course requirement may be met with any approved courses, regardless of concentration distribution. No more than 12 credits of independent study may be taken as part of the Liberal Studies major.

What You Will Learn

  • Spiritual growth—to develop knowledge of the Judeo-Christian tradition and increasingly mature spiritual and theological awareness.
  • Communication proficiency—to develop the essential skills of effective written and oral communication.
  • Broad-based content exposure—to ensure that students are conversant with the essential constructs and skills that comprise at least several of the disciplines of the Liberal Arts & Sciences.
  • Intellectual integration—to develop in students the capacity to synthesize and integrate methods and insights from a variety of intellectual disciplines.
  • Practical application—to develop in students the abilities to apply discipline-specific and integrated content in contexts outside the classroom.
  • Technological competence—to develop students’ technological literacy, information literacy, and computer literacy.
  • Character and ethics development—to challenge and assist students to reflect effectively on their own character and ethics and to understand, practice, and be able to articulate the importance of at least three civic, moral, and/or religious virtues.

Program of Study

A University of Dubuque degree in liberal studies prepares students for the opportunity to pursue a broad-based education in liberal arts and sciences. Students are offered the flexibility to develop individualized programs of study with an interdisciplinary focus. Unlike other majors, the Liberal Studies major emphasizes breadth of study rather than focus on a single discipline. The program is designed to meet the needs of students whose interests may not be fully met with specific curricula and those who have integrative abilities to plan and develop a program appropriate to their interests.


What Our Students Do

The University of Dubuque Liberal Studies Program has three special requirements: A service learning project, an internship or research component, and a senior project - at least one of which requires significant involvement with an identifiable cultural group different from the student’s cultural identity. 

Where Our Graduates Go

University of Dubuque liberal studies students planning to attend graduate school can use this major to develop a wide knowledge base upon which to build their specialized graduate training. Employers often welcome students with broad liberal arts background.

Liberal Studies - Program of Study

The courses below are a program sample of what students may encounter.  Students will meet with their advior to develop a personal educational program to plan their elective course choices, internships, undergraduate research, and other educational opportunities and experiences.

Year One

Fall Semester
WVS 101: World View Seminar I (3)
CIS 101: Introduction to Computers (3)
ENG 101: Composition & Rhetoric (3)
UDMA 112: Algebra (4) or other Math course

J-Term
Required - See advisor for course choices (credit variable)

Spring Semester
WVS 201: World View Seminar II (3)
COM 101: Speech Communication (3)
RES 104: Research & Writing (3)
BIO 110: Human Biology and Lab (4) or other Science Lab Course


Year Two

Fall Semester
BIO 125: Population, Rsources and Environment (3) or other Stewardship course
WVS 301: Worldview Seminar II (3)
ENG 112: Introduction to Literature (or other ENG course) (3)
HWS 110: Physical Activity (1)
UDIN 115: World Geography (or other Global Awareness course) (3)

J-Term
Required - See advisor for course choices (credit variable)

Spring Semester
REL 110: Judeo-Christian Journeys (or other REL) (3)
SOC 112: Contemporary Social Problems (or other Social Development) (3)
ART 111: Survey of Western Art (3) or other Aesthetics B course
HWS 110: Physical Activity (1)


Year Three

Fall Semester
UDLS 111: Elementary Spanish I (or other Global Awareness B Course) (3)
Course in Concentration #1 (3)
Course in Concentration #2 (3)
Course in Concentration #1 (3)

J-Term
Recommended 

Spring Semester
Course in Concentration #1 (3)
Course in Concentration #2 (3)
Course in Concentration #1 (3)
Course in Concentration #2 (3)


Year Four

Fall Semester
Course in Concentration #2 (3)
Course in Concentration #2(3)
300 Level or above course (3)
300 Level or above course (3)
Internship/Research (3 – 6)

J-Term
Recommended

Spring Semester
300 Level or above course (3)
300 Level or above course (3)
300 Level or above course (3)
Service/Cultural Learning (3)
Senior Project (3 – 6)

 

What Our Students Do

The University of Dubuque Liberal Studies Program has three special requirements: A service learning project, an internship or research component, and a senior project - at least one of which requires significant involvement with an identifiable cultural group different from the student’s cultural identity. 

Where Our Graduates Go

University of Dubuque liberal studies students planning to attend graduate school can use this major to develop a wide knowledge base upon which to build their specialized graduate training. Employers often welcome students with broad liberal arts background.

The Liberal Studies Bachelor of Arts (BA) major is designed to give students the opportunity to pursue a broad-based education in liberal arts and sciences. Students are offered the flexibility to develop individualized programs that combine two or more areas of study. As such, students will take coursework from faculty who specialize in the chosen areas of study.

Careers in Liberal Studies

The University of Dubuque Liberal Studies major provides an opportunity for a student with interests in more than one major to complete a concentration of course work in more than one specific area of study. Course work is required in each of two concentrations: 1) humanities and social sciences and 2) natural sciences, education, nursing, and business. Course credits used to satisfy the concentration requirements may or may not coincide with the student’s particular academic interest areas. The intent of the major is to provide the breadth of knowledge associated with a college education and to allow the student to gain knowledge in more than one area of study.

BA Opportunities

Students with the bachelor of arts in liberal studies have continued their studies on the graduate level in a variety of academic areas associated with their areas of interest at the undergraduate study level.

Post-graduate Opportunities

Graduates of the Liberal Studies Program have found employment opportunities in the business, science, and service areas of the employment world.

Successful Outcomes

Sarah Bechler, BA, 2013 Liberal Studies

I began my University of Dubuque education as a nursing major. Toward the end of my undergraduate study, I decided I wanted to pursue an emphasis in psychology.  The faculty and staff at the University collaborated with me to create an individually planned major: health science with an emphasis in psychology and nursing.  I am grateful every day for their continued support, caring, preparation, and immense encouragement as I completed my degree and moved on to life after graduation in May 2013.  Upon graduation, I continued to work at a community mental health office, and was given great insight into the psychology field.  I continued on to become a behavior assistant in an autism center, and discovered my passion for working with individuals with developmental disorders.  I now work with elementary-age children who are diagnosed on the autism spectrum, applying  Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA).  I love seeing the progress in these children and never realized how rewarding it would feel to truly help others in this way.  My work in this field strengthened my desire for continued enrichment in psychology.  I am currently enrolled in the master’s program at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology in child and adolescent psychology with a and Board Certified Behavior Analysis (BCBA) concentration.  Through my active involvement at the University of Dubuque including Greek life, Student Ambassador Association, Performing Arts, and various leadership roles, I was given the opportunity to learn from excellent role models who helped form who I am today.