A total of 30 credits is required to complete the master of arts in liberal studies (M.A.L.S.) program. This includes nine classes (27 credits) and a capstone research project (3 credits).
All M.A.L.S. students are required to satisfy the following subject area requirements:
Required Subject Areas of M.A.L.S. Courses
- Courses in at least three different academic disciplines
- At least two courses (6 credits) in humanities (art, history, literature, philosophy, religion, etc.)
- At least two courses (6 credits) in social sciences (anthropology, psychology, political science, sociology, criminal justice, etc.)
- One course on either non-Western cultures or issues pertaining to gender and/or minorities
All M.A.L.S. courses are offered as asynchronous online classes.
you have never taken an online course before, it is important to
understand that they are run differently from face-to-face classes.
Online M.A.L.S. classes do not meet at a specific time when everyone is
online together, so you are able to be fully involved in the class no
matter what your schedule is. Online M.A.L.S. classes try to capture
what goes on in a traditional graduate M.A.L.S. seminar, in which the
professor's role focuses more on facilitating discussion among the
students than giving lectures. So in online M.A.L.S. classes, there may
be short video introduction by your professor each week, but there are
no lengthy video lectures filling the entire class.
The typical online M.A.L.S. class has a similar structure each week. At the beginning of the week, let's say Sunday, students will log on to the course website and find out the reading assignments for that week. (You can also see the schedule for the whole semester, if you want to read ahead.) They will also read the introductory material prepared by the professor about the topic for the week, possibly including additional images, videos, or PowerPoint slides to consider. The professor will give information about issues to pay attention to as you do the readings, and the professor will give a writing assignment regarding the readings. Typically, students would be told to do the reading and complete a 500-word response by Wednesday night. In addition, they will usually be asked to read each other's responses and to write shorter reactions to two of the student essays by Saturday. There may also be informal discussion among the students in the class and with the professor. Then the cycle begins again for the next week.
The goal in all M.A.L.S. classes is for you to develop skills in clear thinking and articulate, well-organized writing about academic topics and issues. A semester project is almost always assigned to help you practice these skills.
Online courses are not easier than regular courses and most students report that they require about the same amount of time and effort as regular classes.
Additional Guidelines for Students at Camden Campus
For M.A.L.S. students who are able to come to the Camden campus for classes, there are additional options. If you are interested in traditional face-to-face classes, you may request permission to take courses that are offered primarily for students in other graduate programs
(e.g., history, English, childhood studies, psychology, etc.). In addition, M.A.L.S. students may ask for permission to enroll in certain advanced undergraduate classes for graduate credit. The course must be 300-level or above. In addition, you must get permission from the instructor and the M.A.L.S. program director.M.A.L.S. students taking such courses for graduate
credit are generally expected to complete additional readings or
assignments beyond what is required of undergraduate students. You may
take no more than two undergraduate courses for graduate credit.