Having an education that is focused on the liberal arts can do wonders for your life. These courses are not necessarily easy, nor do they focus heavily on just reading and talking about things, but they help you grow as a person.
They teach you how to think critically about all types of material. Things like literature, history, sociology, political science, and philosophy all contribute to this.
By understanding other disciplines, you get concepts from each one incorporated into your own way of thinking. You learn how to apply these concepts to new situations, which helps you in the real world!
Furthermore, studies show that people who pursue undergraduate degrees in the humanities are happier than those with only a bachelor’s degree or less.
This is due to the fact that graduate students tend to be more socially conscious and aware than others. They also feel educated and intelligent, which makes them feel better about themselves.
Graduate school students also tend to enjoy their field more, compared to undergraduates. This passion for what they study helps make them happy.
Liberal arts graduates have higher paying jobs than those with only a bachelors degree, so happiness and financial security go hand-in-hand.
History of the liberal arts
The term “liberal education” comes from the Latin word liber, which means free or liberty. In the 17th century in England, universities began requiring students to take courses that focused not only on vocational skills like business administration or medical doctoring, but also on the humanities — the study of literature, history, and philosophy.
These non-vocational courses were considered more important than practical training because they helped develop self-knowledge and understanding of the world beyond one’s own personal experience. They also gave you something to talk about with other people after you leave school (and hopefully before you get too job obsessed!).
In America, most colleges still require at least two years of English, social studies, and mathematics. But many offer additional majors in areas such as art, music, theater, foreign languages, and humanities. These are often referred to as “breadwinner” degrees because they prepare you for careers by giving you knowledge and tools that are helpful for life.
Furthermore, these general education classes teach you how to think analytically and logically, which is valuable whether you plan to go into academia or business. Many employers consider this a must-have skill for a worker.
There are several reasons why an education in the humanities is so valuable.
What does it mean to be a liberal artist?
Being a liberal art professional means more than just using colors or going through elaborate artistic processes, it is about informing people’s beliefs with knowledge that comes from sources they will trust.
It is sharing information that can help them form their own ideas and opinions in areas such as politics, sociology, psychology, and philosophy.
These are all important parts of being a well-rounded individual who knows what makes this world work for the better. You should always strive to learn more about these things because you never know when they will come into play.
For example, someone could go ahead and attack your favorite movie or TV show because it may contain concepts like discrimination, gender roles, or capitalism.
You would not agree with their argument, so you could start talking about why those concepts are wrong or bad. Or perhaps you could use insights from one theory to prove another wrong.
The truth is, there is no right way to look at the world and Ira Zeveldt says it very clearly in his article! He writes: “There are only two fundamental ways to approach life: optimistically or pessimistically.
Ways to be a liberal arts degree
Being a student of liberal arts means more than just learning lots of things. It also means being understanding and supportive of other people’s points of view.
Liberal arts students are typically good at reading, writing, and speaking their lesson material very well. But beyond that, they tend to hone critical thinking skills by exploring topics from many angles and positions.
This is important because in today’s world, one can never truly assume anything or anyone is totally honest or sincere. You have to evaluate every claim seriously and objectively.
Furthermore, liberal arts education cultivates self-knowledge and empathy — qualities that most experts agree are essential for happiness.
You will learn about different cultures and philosophies, which help you understand how various groups manage stress and motivate themselves. This applies not only in life but in business as well.
Degree programs in the liberal arts
Some people believe that only professional degrees like medicine or business are important, but this is not true. All degree programs focused on the humanities, social sciences, and natural resources are integral parts of every person’s education.
These areas of study include psychology, sociology, anthropology, history, economics, political science, and many others. By studying these fields, you will understand yourself and the world around you.
This is an invaluable lesson since both personal and global success depend on understanding oneself and other people. There are several reasons why having an extensive background in the liberal arts is so important.
You will find it helpful when looking for employment. Most employers look at past work experiences as well as educational backgrounds to determine if someone has what it takes to be part of the company. For example, they may ask about courses related to certain departments such as marketing or finance.
Furthermore, active participation in student government, academic clubs, sports teams, and similar organizations helps build confidence and leadership skills. These could be career benefits as well.
Studies in the liberal arts also help develop higher intelligence quotients (IQs) which have been linked to increased income and happiness. A recent study found that individuals with a bachelor’s degree had a 5% increase in lifetime earnings compared to those who only held a high school diploma.
Overall, investing time into obtaining a degree in any field is a worthy goal because of its potential rewards.
Popular liberal arts degrees
Many people have their career goals shaped by what degree they pursue and what field of study they choose to go into after college. As such, it is very important for you to know what each major offers and if these majors are transferable onto other fields.
Some popular liberal arts departments include English, history, psychology, sociology, art, music, or any combination thereof. All of these areas focus more heavily on reading, writing, and discussing topics rather than teaching them, which makes them good preparation for most careers.
These areas also emphasize logic, reasoning, and creativity, all of which can be applied in many different ways. People with an education in one of these areas are in high demand and will make great money, so do your research and see what programs exist around you!
Transferring courses from one area to another is common as well, making some of these subjects more affordable. For example, studying psychology via social science studies like anthropology, economics, or political sciences can help you lower tuition costs significantly.
Furthermore, many employers look at formal schooling as a way to determine whether you will succeed in a position. Having either a bachelor’s or master’s degree can boost your chances of being promoted.
The impact of the liberal arts
Beyond helping you develop as a person, an undergraduate degree in the humanities can help you achieve your career goals. According to a study conducted by Business Insider, people with a bachelor’s degree are paid $5,000 more than those without one.
In fact, having just a high school diploma was linked to a pay decrease of 5%–6%. In other words, it makes no difference whether or not you have a college degree if you cannot afford one!
Furthermore, research indicates that individuals who attend graduate school enter into higher quality relationships. This is important because we spend our lives interacting with others, so developing strong interpersonal skills is very valuable.
Academic disciplines like psychology, sociology, and anthropology help us understand ourselves and the world around us, making us better leaders and contributors within society. We learn about leadership through things like organizational theory and social theories such as Marxism and Freudianism.
These concepts teach us how power works and why some groups are able to exist longer than others.
Ways to become a liberal arts degree
Now, this doesn’t mean that all students who major in these subjects are necessarily good people or will make great professionals, but they do have something going for them.
These areas build self-confidence. Many successful individuals credit their success to education. A college education is more than just an academic credential — it provides knowledge about yourself and the world.
This personal development is important because we live in a society where media companies depend on us watching their shows and using of their services to survive.
We get paid per hour we work, so if you want to earn money, you need to understand how to contribute to a company or area of business beyond simply coming into work.
Liberal arts degrees teach you how to think critically about the truth of things and how to relate to other people. This helps you be happier and better connected with others.
It also gives you the ability to analyze information and concepts more thoroughly, which can help you succeed in various fields.
Transferring to a liberal arts degree
Even if you don’t plan to go into business, or study science, or work in technology, most well-paying jobs require at least an associate’s degree, if not a bachelor’s. And while some employers may only look at high school diplomas when hiring, past experiences show that education is one of the key factors in determining someone’s job prospects.
So what kind of education would be helpful for your career? A general studies degree — also called a humanities or fine art degree — teaches about literature, history, languages, and other topics that are important to understanding how we evolved as humans and cultures grow older.
These degrees focus more on reading and studying books rather than teaching courses, so they’re usually less expensive than others with heavier content like math, biology, psychology, or economics. But this means professors can choose their own material, which sometimes includes controversial ones like The Da Vinci Code, Holocaust survivors’ accounts, or stories about social injustices.
There are many routes to get these types of educations, but most start with students spending several years learning lots of things, then picking one area they’d like to specialize in. Some people become language experts, while others decide to teach literature or creative writing.
Some graduates find employment right away, while others have trouble finding work due to competition from those who have trained in harder academic areas.