A liberal arts degree is not like a bachelor’s in business or psychology, where you can immediately find employment with it. That kind of degree requires little preparation to go into it, but it will cost you more than a degree that can be more directly applied to career opportunities.
A liberal arts degree does things beyond teaching you how to think about concepts and information, however. It teaches you how to use ideas effectively to achieve your goals, which can apply even outside of academia.
Furthermore, studying art, literature, history, and other areas of humanities has shown to help develop focus, self-awareness, and communication skills. All of these qualities are important in life, whether you’re talking about work, relationships, or just general wellness.
Reasons students choose a liberal arts degree
Many people believe that studying art, literature or music is not practical for career opportunities. These types of studies are instead categorized as “liberal” academic fields that focus more on understanding the concepts behind things rather than testing your knowledge in one area.
A liberal arts education can be valuable to you if you want to pursue an artistic career like painting, sculpting or designing. Or maybe you want to become a famous writer or musician.
Alternatively, this type of college major may help prepare you for professional work in another field such as business or medicine. Because you learned how to apply basic skills to different areas, it is easy to transfer these into other careers.
Liberal arts degrees emphasize educating students through the study of the humanities (literature, language, history) as well as natural sciences (biology, chemistry, physics). This is why they are sometimes referred to as bachelors’ programs because they teach you about everything — including math!
Furthermore, some departments within a liberal arts school focus more on giving you the fundamentals while others may offer more advanced courses. Either way, this is important to know before choosing which department to go after.
Ways to pay for a liberal arts degree
Even if you don’t have a lot of money, there are many ways to fund your dreams of an education at a great school like Johns Hopkins. Many students earn academic credit through online courses or by studying abroad. Some even find work in their field that doesn’t require a college degree, so they start fundraising early!
There are several different types of scholarships available to help you out as well.
Classes tend to be discussion based
In the classroom, you will typically find yourself sitting next to someone who is also there to learn something new. Depending on what class it is, they may talk about things that directly relate to the field, or that are related to other courses, but still applicable to what they teach.
For example, if your sociology course was about media influence, then maybe you’ll get some insights into how social media has an effect on society. Or perhaps you’ll hear about theories of motivation in learning.
Or maybe you’ll just have fun talking with people about whatever thing you both seem to enjoy. Either way, attending college should bring you joy. It is one of the best ways to achieve this!
The more you attend classes, the easier it becomes to walk away with knowledge. Plus, being able to discuss concepts with others makes you feel smart which helps you feel better about yourself.
General education courses like psychology, art, humanities, and mathematics help students develop fundamental skills such as communication, reasoning, and problem solving. These are great foundations for future studies.
Small class sizes
One of the most important things to look for in college is small classes. This is very significant, as large lecture settings are not appropriate for every student. Some students learn better when there are more people around, while others learn best when they can ask questions and get answers from someone else or just be distracted by what other students are doing.
Class size should be limited to about 20-25 students per instructor, depending on the course. Faculty members that have several courses together should try to teach at least one section of each class outside of meeting with other professors to help out with different assignments.
This way everyone’s needs are met individually and their education doesn’t suffer because of it. For example, if you were studying history, you would be missing out on learning how historians relate information and academic theories related to history!
Faculty must also make sure that all students feel comfortable and included in the classroom setting. No one should ever feel like they are being ignored or left out.
Opportunities to take classes abroad
One of the biggest benefits of attending college as a liberal arts major is that you do not have to be in school during the hours it is officially held. Many colleges offer students the opportunity to attend some of their courses at another location or even come from online sources.
Education overseas has become increasingly common, too. Some schools offer full scholarships to study abroad for an undergraduate degree, which can include tuition and living expenses.
Students are able to explore different cultures through studying other languages and learning about different civilizations. All of this contributes to developing your understanding of others and yourself.
Furthermore, many employers expect candidates with degrees beyond just business administration or marketing. A related bachelor’s degree or advanced certification like CFP® (Certified Financial Planner) demonstrates that you have put time into educating yourself and mastering practical skills.
You learn to be a lifelong learner
A liberal arts education is not about what you know, it’s about how well you use what you already know. It teaches you to analyze knowledge, reasoning, and logic systematically and effectively, as opposed to relying on instinct alone.
This way of learning applies beyond academic settings. When you are planning your future career or life, this system of education can help you evaluate whether an opportunity makes sense for you.
You will also have to navigate complex social situations more skillfully, something that many people who have an art degree find helpful.
You gain experience working with your classmates
A liberal arts degree is not just about studying lots of different subjects, it’s also about developing skills that are important to succeed in life. These include teamwork, communication, problem solving, and leadership.
Studies show that people who graduate from college with an undergraduate degree in the humanities or social sciences tend to be happier than those students who choose more practical majors like business or science.
This has got some people wondering why we should really need both a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree. Is there no longer a reason to have two degrees?
Fortunately, there is! While it is true that having only one piece of paper can help you achieve your career goals, it may not set you up for success in the long run.
You’ll get a well-rounded education
A liberal arts degree is not just about learning how to read, write, and do math well. It also teaches you about humanities, literature, philosophy, history, and other areas of study that focus on understanding the world around us. These are called the fields of humanism.
Most schools with this designation have some sort of fine art or music major as part of their curriculum. Artists use creativity in expressing themselves through different media, so these students learn how to apply such skills to studying books, magazines, and documentaries about social issues and politics.
Music has powerful effects on people. Students who take psychology courses can explore why songs make people feel certain emotions. Literature classes look at how stories influence readers’s feelings and thoughts.
These concepts combine into important lessons for self-awareness. If someone else makes you feel bad, what does it mean for you? What situations make you unhappy? Are there things that make you happy?
Students may be educated in religion, too. The field of theology explores sacred writings and philosophies from all over the globe. This gives insights into the ways different cultures built up beliefs about God and the universe.