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What is a Liberal Arts Education?

In the broadest sense, the purpose of a liberal arts and sciences education is to learn how to learn, how to think critically and independently, how to speak and write effectively, how to appreciate a diverse range of cultural and artistic traditions, and how to become an ethical, effective, and engaged global citizen. In the liberal arts, students come to recognize the limits of their own knowledge but also acquire some of the critical tools needed to evaluate scientific theories, works of art, historical facts, and philosophical traditions. Ultimately, the liberal arts and sciences are about developing a habit of mind that is characterized by humility, honesty, and a relentless intellectual curiosity.

Why Choose a Liberal Arts Education?

Learning how to learn and acquiring the skills to become a lifelong learner are at the center of a liberal arts education. Such habits of mind often translate into a whole variety of rewarding careers and can lead to a balanced, engaged, and fulfilling lifestyle. The liberal arts are well suited for students who enjoy learning for learning's sake and may be less attractive to those who prefer a more technical or vocational approach to their education. As a result of USD's commitment to the liberal arts, many of our graduates have advanced to distinguished careers in teaching, research, medicine, law, journalism, politics, the arts, philanthropy, and international business.