About Us

The College of Humanities and Social Sciences offers a broad range of academic pursuits. Our major areas of study are organized in 15 units designated as schools, departments or programs. These various disciplines give students a fuller understanding of the past, present, and future roles of both the individual and society in shaping human experience. The humanities and the social sciences are cornerstones of a liberal arts education. In courses and other learning experiences provided by the college, students become familiar with the most significant accomplishments of the human intellect and spirit and gain appreciation for the potential we have as humans and as societies.

Scholars in the humanities study many aspects of human existence, such as written and non-written evidence of human progress and how human creativity both reflects the world around us and helps to shape it. The humanities consider how systems of thought and knowledge have developed over time and how they continue to influence our decisions today. Humanistic inquiry asks how events in the past affect the present and how understanding the past can help us shape the future. The humanities produced the first thinkers who formally examined how different cultures and ethnicities approach common needs and how they express commonly held aspirations in diverse ways. Some humanities disciplines demonstrate how language mirrors our identity and opens windows to the world, while others study ways in which humans have learned to cooperate in order to articulate their values and accomplish their goals.

With goals closely related to those of the humanities, the social sciences view the world around us as a laboratory for observation, experimentation, and the advancement of new ideas and practices. Social scientists strive to understand the human capacity for adapting to changing environments and circumstances. Some disciplines examine systems of exchange, communication, and organization. Others study the ways in which humans identify and assert themselves as individuals and as groups, and they learn from the experiences and interaction among people in different times, circumstances, and places.

The College of Humanities and Social Sciences is committed to the liberal arts tradition of advancing human knowledge through serious scholarship, superior instruction, and the freedom of academic inquiry. The faculty employs the latest teaching and learning technology while emphasizing accessibility and the benefits of student-teacher interaction. Humanities and Social Sciences majors are broadly educated to think critically and independently, to articulate ideas and appreciate diverse perspectives, and to exercise reason and make informed judgments. These tools prepare graduates for life in a complex world, help them enter a wide variety of professions, and lay the foundations for lifelong learning.

Schools, Departments and Programs within the College