Liberal Studies

Liberal Studies Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) On-Campus Degree

About Liberal Studies Bachelor's Degree

Study outside of the box with an interdisciplinary liberal studies degree.

PennWest California's liberal studies on-campus bachelor's degree gives you the flexibility to follow your many interests. Explore humanities subjects such as communication studies, history and theater. Delve into natural sciences topics in biology and computer science. Or investigate social science issues in sociology, political science and economics.

 If your interests span traditional disciplinary liberal arts boundaries, liberal studies at PennWest California could be a great path for you. This accredited bachelor's degree program also provides a flexible completion option if you have not taken a traditional degree route.

Cultivate real-world job skills as a liberal studies major at PennWest California.

  • Develop in-demand analytical skills, societal and cultural knowledge, and an appreciation for the arts.
  • Be able to adapt to changing career, personal and social demands.
  • Gain invaluable real-world job experience through internship and paid career


Customized Course Plan: Choose your degree classes from a wide range of topics in the humanities, social sciences and natural sciences. Whether you're interested in theater or physics, sociology or math, you can tailor your degree to your personal and professional interests.

Experiential Learning: Your PennWest California bachelor's degree in liberal studies will incorporate research and hands-on activities that put coursework into context and build marketable skills. You'll graduate with the knowledge, experience and confidence you need for career success.

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4 of 5 
Employers agree that all students should acquire broad knowledge in the liberal arts and sciences. (Source: AAC&U Study: "Liberal Arts Graduates and Employment")
of surveyed liberal studies graduates reported successful job placement or are in graduate school.**From a 2014 survey of program graduates
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Degree Benefits

The many benefits of a PennWest California bachelor's degree in liberal studies include:

  • Establishing a solid academic base upon which you can build almost any career.
  • Working with expert professors to develop new research, scholarship and creative projects.
  • Personalized academic support and career
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Graduate Outcomes

A bachelor's degree in liberal studies prepares you to thrive in wide range of job opportunities and can serve as a strong foundation for graduate-level studies. PennWest California program alumni have gone on to successful careers in the government, social work and education. Liberal studies graduates also excel in areas such as accounting, advertising, consulting, marketing, public relations and sales.

Liberal Studies Bachelor's Degree
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Research Opportunities

As an undergraduate liberal arts major at PennWest California, you'll have opportunities to develop new research, scholarship and creative projects in a collaborative setting. You'll enhance your knowledge, explore fascinating questions, expand your resume and have opportunities partake in professional dialogue at local and national conferences.

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Why is a liberal arts education important?

"A liberal education helps students develop a sense of social responsibility, as well as strong and transferable intellectual and practical skills such as communication, analytical and problem-solving skills, and a demonstrated ability to apply knowledge and skills in real-world settings." - The Association of American Colleges and Universities

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The PennWest California Career Advantage

As an undergraduate student, you'll benefit from PennWest California's Career Advantage Program - a one-of-a-kind character- and career-building experience. It's a four-year plan to help you discover the college career path that's the best fit for your skills, talents and interests.

Liberal Studies On-Campus Bachelor's Degree Courses

Courses from the humanities, natural sciences and social sciences are used to fulfill the major requirements for PennWest California's bachelor of arts in liberal studies. This 120-credit degree program enables you to explore a diverse selection of liberal arts disciplines.


Course Credits
General Education Courses 40 or 41
Building a Sense of Community
UNI 100  First-Year Seminar
  • ENG 101  English Composition I
  • ENG 102  English Composition II
Public Speaking
Any CDC Public Speaking Course
Mathematics and Quantitative Literacy
Any Mathematics and Quantitative Literacy Course
Health and Wellness
Any Health and Wellness Course
Technological Literacy
Any Technological Literacy Course
Any Humanities Course
Fine Arts
Any Fine Arts Course
Natural Sciences
Any Natural Sciences Course
Social Sciences
Any Social Sciences Course
General Education Options
  • Any Ethics and Multicultural Awareness Emphasis Course
  • Additional General Education Courses (two courses)
Required Major Courses 39
LST 490  Seminar in Liberal Studies 3
Lower- and/or Upper-Division Electives* 21
Upper-Division Electives* 15
Free Electives 40 or 41
Total 120

Additional requirements, not counted toward the General Education requirements, include:

  • Special Experience Course (1 course required): LST 490 Liberal Studies Seminar
  • Writing-Intensive Component Courses (2 courses required): Any Upper-Division, Writing-Intensive Menu Courses from: ANT, ARB, ART, BIO, CHE, COM, CSC, EAS, ECO, ENG, ENS, FRE, GEO, HIS, JUS, LEA, MAT, MUS, PHI, PHS, PHY, POS, PSY, SOC, SOW, SPN, THE, WST
  • Laboratory Course (1 course required): Any Laboratory Course

* Electives listed under "Required Major Courses" must be selected from the following disciplines: ANT, ARB, ART, BIO, CHE, COM, CSC, EAS, ECO, ELC, ENG, ENS, FRE, GEO, HIS, JUS, LEA, MAT, MUS, PHI, PHS, PHY, POS, PSY, SOC, SOW, SPN, THE, WFD, WST

Program Notes:

  • A maximum of 24 credits can be used with the same course prefix.
  • 42 credits (or 14 courses) of upper-division (any course numbered 200 or above with at least one pre-requisite course) courses are required.
  • No more than 30 credits may be earned via PLA.
  • Developmental courses do not count toward graduation but are calculated in the overall GPA.




Liberal Studies Undergraduate Degrees