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The fundamental purpose of education is to put people in possession of their powers. - John Dewey
Jean Dubuffet, Cadeau d'Anniversaire (detail), 1964. Rosenberg Collection, UWM.

Master's in Liberal Studies: Curriculum

Hallmarks of the MLS curriculum include uniquely conceived, genuine interdisciplinary courses; distinguished faculty; convenient, late afternoon or evening meeting times; individualized advising and flexible timetable for meeting graduation requirements; and special lectures, conferences, and other events in conjunction with the Center for 21st Century Studies.

The degree requires thirty credits:
  • two introductory core seminars designed to establish a common base of knowledge from an interdisciplinary standpoint and to create a sense of intellectual community among each entering class of students – 8 credits

  • a minimum of two special topics courses, including a study-abroad option, offered exclusively to MLS students – 6-18 credits

  • a maximum of four elective graduate-level courses taken in departments that hold a particular interest for individual students – 0-12 credits

  • a culminating independent study project guided by a faculty member – 4 credits

  • Guidelines for the Culminating Project (html, pdf)

Although no specific schedule for graduation is prescribed, the program is designed so that a student can earn the degree in 4-5 semesters. Course offerings planned for the academic year (2013-2014) include:

  • Narrating Self and Nation in American Art, Literature, and Thought
  • Border Crossings in 20th-Century American Im/migrant Art, Literature and Thought
  • Animals in Contemporary Culture
  • Political Ecology of the Imagination