Liberal Arts

Why Earn a Master of Arts in Liberal Studies (MALS)?

Research shows that employers favor job candidates with ethical judgment, the capacity to work with people from diverse backgrounds, knowledge about contemporary global issues, and the ability to learn, think critically, conduct research, and solve problems. MALS students at Excelsior hone these skills through a program of study that includes coursework in ethics, cultural studies, global issues, humanities, research and writing, organizational leadership, and strategic problem-solving.

This Versatile Master's Program Supports Many Career Paths

Excelsior's MALS graduates work in a wide variety of different fields, including education, the military, management, information technology, social work, engineering, human resources, and journalism. For many, the MALS leads directly to career advancement. An alumni survey indicates that 27% of recent MALS graduates received a promotion within a year after earning their degree. Others go on to graduate school, earn professional certifications, and work on personal projects related to their graduate research. 

Students enrolled in the MALS program at Excelsior College typically:

  • Have a personal passion for a subject they would like to study in-depth or just want to learn more about a wide variety of things.
  • Are eager to develop practical skills that will help advance their career.
  • Need a flexible, online program that will work with their schedule.
  • Are interested in conducting interdisciplinary research.
  • Want the opportunity to work one-on-one with a faculty advisor and faculty mentors.
  • Would like to have the option to complete a creative project, such as a screenplay or musical composition, as part of their culminating project.
  • Want to save time and money by transferring in up to 15 credits of graduate-level work from other institutions.

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 options.

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 arguments for logical coherence and supporting evidence.
  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 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 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 900 M.A. 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

Email:

GradAdmissions@excelsior.edu

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