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Which College Majors Offer Courses in Humanities?

Almost every 4-year college degree program requires some humanities coursework. Credits in this area can be earned by studying social sciences, arts, foreign languages and more. This article will provide some idea of which college departments and majors offer courses in humanities.

Humanities Courses for Every Major

Every student who pursues a bachelor's degree will need to take some courses in the humanities. This is true even of those majoring in science, engineering or mathematics. Those who major in a particular area of humanities have additional requirements in their own and related areas of study. Students who wish to fulfill elective requirements will need to look outside their own majors for humanities credits.

Important Facts About Humanities Studies

Key Skills Courses in the humanities provide students with marketable skills, such as problem solving, communication, critical thinking, and collaborative-abilities
Online Availability Select courses in the humanities are available online through many higher institutions
Continuing Education Non-degree and degree holding individuals can enroll in singular classes for personal or professional growth
Possible Careers Teacher, social worker, artist, and translator are a few jobs those who earn a full degree in the humanities may pursue (depending upon degree)
Median Salary (2018)$49,470 (Social Workers)
Job Outlook (2016-2026)16% (Social Workers)

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

Commonly Recognized Humanities Courses

There is no universal agreement on which areas constitute the humanities. Some schools may include the social sciences but not the arts. In other cases, the reverse may be true. One authority, The International Journal of Humanities, lists the following subjects:

  • Anthropology
  • Criminology
  • Performing Arts
  • Communication
  • Geography
  • History
  • Linguistics
  • Literature
  • Media Studies
  • Philosophy
  • Political Science
  • Religious Studies
  • Sociology

College Majors with Humanities Coursework

It's very likely that a course chosen from the subjects listed above will provide a humanities credit. There are, however, other college majors where humanities classes are to be found.

Interdisciplinary Studies

Many schools actually offer majors with the title of humanities or comparative humanities. Majors with similarly inclusive titles include these:

  • Interdisciplinary Liberal Arts
  • Liberal Studies
  • Global and International Studies
  • Global Languages
  • Comparative Cultural Studies

Geographic and Cultural Studies

Some colleges offer emphases, majors and minors that are focused around specific geographic and cultural areas. Courses in these areas take an approach derived from multiple disciplines to explore the laws, customs and literature of distant cultures. Examples include:

  • Russian and Slavic Studies
  • Central American Studies
  • Asian Studies
  • Middle Eastern Studies

Contemporary Area Studies

Within the last fifty years a number of cross-disciplinary humanities majors and minors, often focused on ethnic cultures within the U.S., have emerged. These include:

  • Asian American Studies
  • Chicana-Chicano Studies
  • Gender and Women's Studies
  • Native American Studies