Academics

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Liberal Arts and Sciences

Program Details

The Bachelor of Liberal Arts and Sciences is a multidisciplinary degree that embodies the spirit of a liberal arts education, emphasizing comparative critical thinking, communication, and a broad range of methodologies and applied skills. As is true of many degree programs in the Liberal Arts and Sciences, students pursuing a Bachelor of Liberal Arts and Sciences are not specifically trained for a particular vocation or career path. Instead, graduates of the program bring the integration of multiple disciplinary perspectives, combined with critical thinking, problem-solving, and communication skills, to a variety of careers that value adaptability, flexibility, and innovation. Rather than training for a specific career, this degree offers a comprehensive and rigorous intellectual foundation for a lifetime of learning, preparing individuals to adapt to many different academic, personal, and professional paths.

Emphases of Study

In addition to the introductory and capstone courses, the degree consists of four possible emphases.

  • Paired Minor – Students pursuing the paired minor emphasis choose two minors from the arts and sciences to combine into a strategically focused, interdisciplinary major. See the Undergraduate Catalog for minor pairing options.
  • Multidisciplinary Studies – Students pursuing the multidisciplinary studies emphasis choose courses in consultation with their advisor from across at least three different fields in the arts and sciences.
  • Peace Corps – Students pursuing the Peace Corps emphasis follow a multidisciplinary curriculum that integrates courses approved for the WIU Peace Corps Prep program with a focus on community development and international service. Completion of the emphasis alone does not constitute completion of the WIU Peace Corps Prep program. View more information on PC Prep.
  • Environmental Studies – Students pursuing the environmental studies emphasis follow a multidisciplinary curriculum that focuses on environmental courses and training to address environmental concerns.

Special Opportunities in Liberal Arts and Sciences

Liberal Arts and Sciences students participate in many activities across campus: annual departmental conferences; WIU Undergraduate Research Day; departmental, College and University speaker events; professionalization workshops and many student organizations and clubs. In Macomb, both undergraduate and graduate students are active in the LAS Graduate Student Organization (LASGO).

With our flexible curriculum, students interested in study abroad or internship opportunities can work with their advisor and program director to find and pursue international or professional experiences that prepare them for a variety of career paths or further academic study.

Integrated Baccalaureate and Master's Degree Program

An integrated baccalaureate and master’s degree program is available for the Bachelor of Liberal Arts and Sciences: Master of Liberal Arts and Sciences. An integrated degree program provides the opportunity for outstanding undergraduates to earn both degrees in five years. Please refer to the Graduate Studies catalog for details about the integrated program.

Additional Resources

liberal arts and sciences class

General honors seminars in the humanities, sciences and social sciences provide students with the opportunity to explore key issues with distinguished faculty.

Possible Liberal Arts and Sciences Career Paths

As is true of many degree programs in the Liberal Arts and Sciences, students pursuing a Bachelor of Liberal Arts and Sciences are not specifically trained for a particular vocation or career path. The Liberal Arts and Sciences multidisciplinary bachelor’s degree emphasizes comparative critical thinking, communication and the application of a broad range of methodologies and applied skills. Among other things, the degree prepares graduates to adapt to different social and professional contexts, and to be creative problem solvers.

Students who plan their coursework and choose their minors in consultation with their advisor and the department director open a variety of opportunities for employment, career advancement or further study.

Course Descriptions

Please refer to the undergraduate catalog for detailed program information and course requirements.

ARTS AND SCIENCES (A&S)

196 Introduction to Research Methods. (0) An introduction to methodologies to plan and execute a research project with emphasis on data collection, analysis, and presentation. Graded S/U only. Prerequisite: permission of instructor.

LIBERAL ARTS AND SCIENCES (LAS)
Formerly Arts and Sciences (A&S)

195 (Formerly A&S 195) Introduction to Liberal Arts and Sciences. (3) A comparative introduction to the major areas of the liberal arts and sciences. Students will learn how each area evolved and how each approaches problems and controversies. The course may take its particular focus each year from the University theme.

210 (Formerly A&S 210) Group Diversity. (3) (General Education/Multicultural Studies) Study of cultural identities, values, and interaction of diverse groups. Among the concepts explored will be race, ethnicity, gender, class, sexual orientation, ableism, and age.

298 (Formerly A&S 298) Individual Studies. (1–3) Special projects in Interdisciplinary Studies carried out under the supervision of a faculty member.

495 (Formerly A&S 495) Liberal Arts and Sciences Senior Capstone. (3) Capstone course for the Bachelor of Liberal Arts and Sciences degree. Students will study examples of scholarship from a multidisciplinary perspective, research and present an interdisciplinary solution to a significant problem, and prepare a self-reflective academic personal narrative. Writing Instruction in the Disciplines (WID) course. Prerequisites: LAS 195, ENG 280, senior standing, and permission of the director of the Liberal Arts and Sciences program.

496 Internship. (1–6, repeatable to 6) An internship provides LAS majors the opportunity to gain practical experience and apply their interdisciplinary skills and training through observation and interaction in a professional environment connected to their career interests. Graded S/U. Prerequisites: LAS major, junior or senior standing, and permission of the program director.

498 (Formerly A&S 498) Individual Studies. (1–3) Special projects in Interdisciplinary Studies carried out under the supervision of a faculty member.

Contact Information

Liberal Arts and Sciences

Dr. Alphonso Simpson
Location: Simpkins Hall 205C
1 University Circle
Macomb, IL 61455-1390
Phone: (309) 298-2360

Liberal Arts and Sciences Website

College of Arts & Sciences (CAS)

Dr. Susan Martinelli-Fernandez, Dean
Email: Martinelli-Fernandez@wiu.edu
CAS Email: cas@wiu.edu
Location: Morgan Hall 114
1 University Circle
Macomb, IL 61455-1390
Phone: (309) 298-1828

CAS Website

Liberal Arts and Sciences Advising

Macomb: Ellen Poulter
Simpkins Hall 124
Phone: (309) 298-2189
Email: E-Poulter@wiu.edu

Quad Cities: Kenny Wheeler
Phone: (309) 762-1988
Email: KW-Wheeler@wiu.edu

Simpkins Hall