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Southern New Hampshire University

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Purdue University Global

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Liberty University

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Capella University

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Ashford University

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Grand Canyon University

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Regent University

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New England College

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What Is the Difference Between Liberal Arts and Liberal Sciences?

The terms liberal arts and liberal sciences refer to the same body of knowledge. Such degree programs allow students to gain an understanding of literature, social science, mathematics, music, history, political science, language and philosophy as well as other academic areas. If you are interested in learning more about liberal arts and liberal science programs of study, continue reading.

About Liberal Arts and Sciences

Liberal studies in the arts and sciences give you the opportunity to obtain a well-rounded education. These degrees can be used as a springboard to specific graduate studies. There are also a number of individual studies that you might take in concert with a liberal arts or science curriculum.

Important Facts About Liberal Arts & Liberal Sciences Degrees

Prerequisites High school diploma or equivalent
Online Availability Yes
Degree Levels Associate's, Bachelor's, Master's
Common Courses Biological concepts, English literature, economics, environmental science
Median Salary (2018)$78,470 (Postsecondary Teachers)*
Job Outlook (216-2026)15% (Postsecondary Teachers)*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)

Liberal Arts and Sciences Associate's Degree Studies

Some schools combine these subjects and offer degree programs in liberal arts and sciences. Much of the core curriculum in liberal arts and sciences can be obtained at community colleges or other 2-year institutions.

  • Writing and composition courses might include studies in literature and specific creative writing concentrations. You could also take courses in language studies.
  • History covers a variety of subject areas such as political science, American and world history, psychology, sociology and education.
  • Social science and humanities studies can include courses in communications, theater, English, music and philosophy. Some colleges put language studies into this category.
  • Physical education courses can run the gamut, depending on the school. You can focus on any number of physical activities, including golf, swimming, Pilates, dance and weight lifting. Based on the physical or sports courses your school offers, you might also work on more applied studies.

Some elective courses can be taken if you have either decided on a major concentration or want to try an eclectic mix of courses.

Undergraduate Concentrations in Liberal Arts

The college of liberal arts at a college or university still requires you to choose a concentration, even if that is general studies. Concentrations include:

  • Literature
  • Public policy
  • African studies
  • Sociology
  • Cultural Studies
  • Language Studies
  • Philosophy
  • Religious Studies

Undergraduate Majors in Liberal Science

Liberal science studies can also provide you with a solid background in general studies. Degree programs in liberal science might include such majors and minors as:

  • Mathematics
  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Environmental Studies
  • Criminal Justice

Graduate school majors that you could choose after having earned an undergraduate degree in liberal arts are varied. For instance, you might explore law, journalism, education, languages, theology or psychology.