The B.A. in Liberal Studies provides a general education in the areas of humanities, social sciences, mathematics, and natural sciences. Offered under the auspices of The College of Arts and Sciences, Syracuse University’s founding college, the degree provides the skills and resources that today’s employers want.

  • Fully develop your intellectual capacities—including critical thinking and problem solving
  • Achieve an informed understanding of yourself
  • Appreciate the interests, needs, and perspectives of varied world cultures
  • Understand the natural universe

This program provides ultimate flexibility. Students complete the degree requirements by taking a combination of on-campus classes with courses in a variety of flexible formats, including online, accelerated, blended, and weekend options. A minimum of 120 credits is required to complete the degree. Contact an academic advisor for questions regarding the courses and formats that suit your requirements and schedule.

Admission Requirements

For admission to the Bachelor of Liberal Studies degree program, you must meet these basic admission requirements:

  • High school diploma or GED, or official transcripts from all previous higher education institutions attended
  • For students transferring college credit, minimum 2.5 grade point average
  • For students with no college credit to transfer, high school transcript must be submitted with application
  • In certain instances, the admission committee may request letters of recommendation
  • Interview with an advisor (may be conducted by telephone)

Special Situations:

  • Students may take courses on a nonmatriculated basis to demonstrate academic ability for admission
  • No more than 30 credits gained through testing (CLEP) may be applied toward the program
  • To be accepted for transfer, courses must: show a grade of C (2.0) or better; have been taken at an accredited college or university; and fit degree requirements
  • Where a grade of “pass” has been earned in a course, the school where the grade was earned must certify that a pass is equivalent to a C or higher

Degree Requirements

To be awarded the Bachelor of Liberal Studies Degree, you must meet these minimum degree requirements:

  • Up to 90 credits can be transferred, including 66 credits from a junior college
  • Minimum C average (2.0) required for graduation
  • At least 30 credits must be taken as a part-time student at University College
  • A minimum of 30 upper division credits are required
  • 120 credits are required in the following areas:

Liberal Skills:

  • Writing (6 credits)
  • Intensive Writing (3 credits)
  • Language or Quantitative Skills (4-12 credits of one foreign language OR 6-8 credits of mathematics)

Divisional Perspectives:

Four 3- or 4-credit courses in each division and a 2-course sequence; no more than 3 courses from the same department *

Critical Reflections on Ethical and Social Issues:

6-8 credits

Depth Requirement:

18 credits; nine upper division credits in each of TWO of the following areas

  • Humanities
  • Social Science
  • Natural Science/Mathematics

Liberal Studies Electives:

Courses from humanities, social science, natural science/mathematics)

Free Electives:

Maximum of 24 credits from any academic area outside the liberal arts)

NOTE: For a complete list of the accepted Divisional Perspectives courses—including Critical Reflections on Ethical and Social Issues courses—go to the SU online course catalog.

Program Checksheet

B.A. Liberal Studies - Checksheet
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The Associate of Arts degree in Liberal Studies is also available.