Master of Liberal Arts
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What To Expect
These are the important details you will need to keep in mind as you prepare your application and degree plan.
What is the Master of Liberal Arts Program?
Where — and how — do you see yourself making an impact?
Your thirst for knowledge is never satiated, while you simultaneously aim to push the boundaries of innovation. Reflection on the human experience, for you, is not solely about personal growth but also deepening your spirituality and evolving creatively to shape your career, contribute to the collective discussion and leave a lasting mark on our world.
Abilene Christian University acknowledges that no two individuals have identical personal journeys. The Master of Liberal Arts provides you with the tools and direction to contemplate and grapple with life’s biggest questions while helping advance your liberal education—one designed to enhance your understanding of multiple subject areas, strengthen your listening, communication, critical thinking and ethical reasoning skills, and realize how far-reaching concepts relate to and influence each other.
As a Master of Liberal Arts student, you’ll be immersed in a world of thought and discussion, where a diverse, dynamic community of your peers welcomes your voice and values your perspective. Whether to explore new ideas or take your career in a new direction, the Master of Liberal Arts program:
- strives to broaden the minds of all students, creating an environment to discover more about yourself, our all-encompassing Creator and the world at large;
- lets you craft your degree program to your interests, utilizing a format where you’ll select from multiple graduate courses and concentrations across multiple disciplines, including the social sciences, religion, the arts and humanities, technical and professional areas;
- encourages you to become a well-rounded individual within the context of Christian higher education, where you’ll gain a vast understanding of a subject area while enriching yourself personally and professionally;
- allows for a degree of flexibility with day, evening, short and online courses and the option to attend full or part time around your existing career; and
- helps augment your knowledge and professional expertise through an interdisciplinary approach that allows you to think strategically, flourish creatively, make convincing presentations and develop more thorough, research-based analyses.
Designing Your Degree
In pursuit of intellectual development and professional enhancement, you’ll collaborate with an advisor to structure your degree according to your aspirations and objectives. At the same time, you’ll assemble a graduate committee of faculty members who will assess your work while monitoring and guiding your progress.
As the architect of your degree, you’re in control of its structure and what you’ll learn while keeping the following points in mind:
- Whichever subjects you select, you’ll demonstrate your ability to conduct research and originality of thought and ideas.
- Your degree plan must combine at least two academic divisions while settling on a concentrated cluster of courses (18 hours) centered around a particular theme or topic.
- A maximum of 18 hours can be applied toward a single discipline.
- Within a space of 12 to 15 hours, you can venture into various outside interests.
- Across arts and humanities to technical areas, a wide spectrum of ACU graduate courses are at your fingertips; however, you may need to fulfill specific prerequisites to enroll or be admitted by the instructor or department chair.
- Your degree culminates in a synthesis project, itself reflective of your cluster area, expanding research and analytical skills and ability to develop and support an argument.
- Stemming from your synthesis project, you’ll showcase all you’ve acquired during a comprehensive written and/or oral exam.
What interests you? Students dedicated to new challenges and committed to personal and intellectual growth can find their purpose diving into:
- The Arts and Humanities: Elevate your communication skills and develop a more nuanced, multifaceted perspective of literature and history while finding out what captivates humankind.
- The Social Sciences: Don’t just observe—get into the mind of other humans to unlock their thought processes and group interactions. Courses in psychology, sociology and family studies present a more detailed picture of human behavior, from relationships to decision making.
- Religion: You’re not alone, shepherded and supported by our Creator on your mission. ACU presents a compassionate environment designed to foster and uplift your faith. Along with nourishing your spirit, the Master of Liberal Arts program seeks to empower all students to search for their purpose on this Earth, from individual interactions to your connection with God.
- Business: You see yourself uplifting others through effective leadership and conscientious decision making. Courses in management and finance supplement your liberal education, pairing theory with practical tools you can implement in a range of settings.
Grow Your Career
While not a professional program, the Master of Liberal Arts’ academic rigors, graduate curriculum and tenacious commitment to research and intellectual exploration paint you as an industrious, inquisitive candidate who never accepts the status quo. Continue your education while tackling new obstacles in communication, business, education, marketing and advertising, nonprofit management, social services, writing and reporting and public policy.