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Liberal Arts Programs

Master of Arts in Liberal Studies 2016 content

Master's in Liberal Studies Degree

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. Master's in Liberal Studies (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 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 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.

Program Page: Apply and RFI Links

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MA in Liberal Studies Credit Requirements

Capstone optionReview the credit requirements.

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.  Review the credit requirements.

Program Outcomes

The student who completes the program would be able to:

  • Demonstrate the integration and application of knowledge in two or more liberal arts and science disciplines.
  • Evaluate arguments for logical coherence and supporting evidence.
  • Create connections between issues and their historical and/or social context.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of cultural differences and knowledge of contributions from various cultures.
  • Demonstrate critical and analytical thought in the examination of a range of issues by designing and implementing a substantive research investigation.

Catalog: Liberal Arts

Liberal Arts Catalog

Review degree requirements, learning outcomes, core courses, and more in the School of Liberal Arts Catalog.

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Institutional Accreditation

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Excelsior College is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education, 3624 Market Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104. (267-284-5000). The Middle States Commission on Higher Education is an institutional accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation.

All of Excelsior College's academic programs are registered (i.e., approved) by the New York State Education Department.

Transparency at Excelsior

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Recognition for the Master's in Liberal Studies

The Master of Arts in Liberal Studies program has been accepted into full membership by the Association of Graduate Liberal Studies Programs (AGLSP).