Two-year, associate's-level programs in liberal arts often award an Associate of Arts degree. Alternate options may include an Associate of Science degree, or an Associate of Arts in Liberal Arts and Sciences degree. Certain programs also allow students to choose a specific field of concentration, such as humanities, literature, math and science, social or natural sciences.
Prospective students seeking an associate's degree should first have a high school diploma or GED.
Associate's Degrees in Liberal Arts
Liberal arts curricula are normally grounded in subjects such as literature, the arts, natural sciences and social sciences. Students are encouraged to develop communication and reasoning skills, as well as expanded cultural understanding. Liberal arts coursework can often include core classes such as:
- English, foreign language, oral communication or writing
- Art history or fine arts
Popular Career Options
Students with liberal arts degrees may have more career options available to them than graduates with degrees in a specific discipline. This is because liberal arts students can often demonstrate general proficiency across a wider range of disciplines. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that many employers look for quick-learning candidates who have problem-solving capabilities, critical-thinking skills and good communication capabilities (www.bls.gov). Career options, some of which may require additional training or preparation, can include:
- Tutoring director
- Sales associate
- Public service worker
- Government employee
Students can continue their interdisciplinary studies by earning a Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies or a Bachelor of Liberal Arts degree. Available concentrations can include fields like entrepreneurship, communication, language arts or organizational leadership. Liberal arts bachelor's degrees may serve as stepping-stones into careers like medicine or teaching; although additional education, training and/or certification may often be required. Associate's degrees in liberal arts may also allow students to pursue a bachelor's degree in another discipline, such as English, fine arts or criminal justice.
Students who complete a bachelor's degree and would like to earn a graduate degree in liberal studies may opt to earn a master's degree. Master of Liberal Arts programs typically offer flexible curriculum options, allowing students to select a range of courses that align with their specific interests or career goals.
Students in interdisciplinary liberal arts associate's degree programs have numerous options for concentrations. This degree allows for both entry-level and management positions in multiple career paths.