Liberal Studies

Online Master's Degree from an Accredited Leader in Distance Learning

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The online Master of Arts in Liberal Studies (MALS) program at Excelsior College is designed to meet the needs of busy, working adults. As one of the first fully online liberal studies master's degree programs in the country, Excelsior College will provide you with resources and services that will help you fit graduate school into your schedule along with your job and family responsibilities.

In this online graduate liberal arts program, you'll log in to your courses, so you can study where and when it's most convenient for you. You'll also work one-on-one with faculty mentors to develop advanced writing and research skills, as you benefit from:

  • Generous transfer credit policies. Get a head start on your liberal arts master's degree by transferring up to 15 credits (nearly half the total needed to graduate) from other accredited graduate schools.
  • Affordable tuition. Because Excelsior College delivers its programs online, lower overhead allows us to reduce student costs. Visit our fees and tuition page to learn how much you can save.
  • Personalized student support. The academic advising team at Excelsior College has received national awards for excellence, which means you'll get guidance and advice from advisors who know you on a first name basis.
  • A customizable degree program. You'll choose your own focus in Excelsior's liberal studies master's degree program developing deep expertise in a subject that fascinates you.

Master's Thesis or Master's Capstone - Your Choice

If you're interested in completing a master's thesis or creative project with the support of PhD faculty in your areas of interest, our MALS thesis option will enable you to succeed in an online setting.

If you're interested in earning a master's in liberal studies online, but don't want to undertake a thesis or creative project, you may finish your degree by taking an eight-week capstone course. (See the Degree Credit Options Requirements below, for more information about these two different MALS options.)

Advance Your Career with a Liberal Arts Master's Degree

Excelsior is one of the few fully online colleges to hold membership in the Association for Graduate Liberal Studies, alongside universities such as Dartmouth, Stanford, and Duke. We're also accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education. (Learn more about the MSCHE accreditation programs and specialized accreditations on our Accreditation page.)

As a student in Excelsior's liberal arts master's degree program, you'll work closely with expert faculty who are affiliated with leading institutions all over the world and have the opportunity to explore a topic that fascinates you in-depth, while you cultivate marketable skills in:

  • Critical thinking and analysis
  • Advanced writing and communication
  • Research
  • Interdisciplinary synthesis
  • Cross-cultural understanding
  • Problem-solving and decision-making

Boost your career opportunities and earning potential with a liberal arts master's degree from a national leader.

The student who completes the program would be able to:

  1. Demonstrate the integration and application of knowledge in two or more liberal arts and science disciplines.
  2. Evaluate written or spoken hypotheses utilizing data and drawing on prior knowledge.
  3. Create connections between issues and their historical and/or social context.
  4. Demonstrate an understanding of cultural differences and knowledge of contributions from various cultures.
  5. Demonstrate critical and analytical thought in the examination of a range of issues by designing and implementing a substantive research investigation.

Capstone Option

 See the credit requirements in chart form (PDF).
 

TIER 1 FOUNDATIONAL COURSEWORK Credit Hours
Students must complete 3 of the following foundational courses:
MLS 500 Graduate Research and Writing 9
MLS 623 The Search for Meaning and Identity
MLS 673 Mindsets: Cross-Cultural Understanding
Students must complete 1 of the following to complete the foundational coursework:
MLS 624 Classical Legacies 3
MLS 632 Capitalism and Its Impact
MLS 635 Humanity and the Cosmos
TOTAL TIER 1 REQUIREMENTS (No Degree Completion Plan required) 12
TIER 2 ELECTIVES Credit Hours
Students must complete 15 credits in two or more liberal studies disciplines.
MLS 661 Cultural Perspectives — Interpretive Strategies 15
MLS 662 Ethics in a Changing World
MLS 664 Geopolitical Brinksmanship
MLS 665 Insecurity in the World
MLS 667 Cultural Diversity in the Workplace
MLS 668 Religion in Society & World Politics
MLS 669 Economic Development in Lesser Developed Nations and Communities
MLS 681 Leadership in Organizations and Education
MLS 682 Social Issues in Organizations and Education
MLS 683 The Art of Leadership: Literature and Film
MLS 684 Ethics, Media, the Arts and Society
MLS 685 Strategic Problem-Solving
MLS 693 Social Justice and Societal Oppression
MLS 694 Theories of Conflict and Conflict Resolution
MLS 701 —
MLS 706 Independent Learning Contract
TOTAL TIER 2 REQUIREMENTS 15

 

TIER 3 CAPSTONE PROJECT Credit Hours
Students must complete 6 credits.
MLS 697 Methodology 6
MLS 798 Master's Capstone (3 credits, 8 weeks)
TOTAL TIER 3 REQUIREMENTS 6
TOTAL DEGREE CREDITS 33

Thesis Option

This program accepts up to 15 of your previous earned graduate level credits. Certain conditions apply. Please consult the graduate admissions office for further details.  See the credit requirements in chart form (PDF).

TIER 1 FOUNDATIONAL COURSEWORK Credit Hours
Students must complete 3 of the following foundational courses:
MLS 500 Graduate Research and Writing 9
MLS 623 The Search for Meaning and Identity
MLS 673 Mindsets: Cross-Cultural Understanding
Students must complete 1 of the following to complete the foundational coursework:
MLS 624 Classical Legacies 3
MLS 632 Capitalism and Its Impact
MLS 635 Humanity and the Cosmos
TOTAL TIER 1 REQUIREMENTS 12
TIER 2 FOCUSED COURSEWORK Credit Hours
Degree Completion Plan: Students must complete 12 credits in two or more liberal studies disciplines.
MLS 661 Cultural Perspectives — Interpretive Strategies 15
MLS 662 Ethics in a Changing World
MLS 664 Geopolitical Brinksmanship
MLS 665 Insecurity in the World
MLS 667 Cultural Diversity in the Workplace
MLS 668 Religion in Society & World Politics
MLS 669 Economic Development in Lesser Developed Nations and Communities
MLS 681 Leadership in Organizations and Education
MLS 682 Social Issues in Organizations and Education
MLS 683 The Art of Leadership: Literature and Film
MLS 684 Ethics, Media, the Arts and Society
MLS 685 Strategic Problem-Solving
MLS 693 Social Justice and Societal Oppression
MLS 694 Theories of Conflict and Conflict Resolution
MLS 701 and
MLS 706 Independent Learning Contract
TOTAL TIER 2 REQUIREMENTS 15
TIER 3 Thesis Credit Hours
Students must complete 6 credits.
MLS 697 Methodology* 6
MLS 799 The Master's Thesis
TOTAL TIER 3 REQUIREMENTS 6
TOTAL DEGREE CREDITS 33

*Requirement can also be completed by MLS*703 Graduate Historiography or MLS*703 Literary Theory

For More Info

Call or email us with your questions about our programs:

Toll free:

888-647-2388 ext. 22

Email:

GradAdmissions@excelsior.edu


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