Oct 18, 2021  
University Catalog 2021-2022 
  
University Catalog 2021-2022

Liberal Studies, Individualized Concentration, BA


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BA in Liberal Studies: Individualized
Location:
AU Seattle
Credits for Degree: 180 quarter credits
Standard Mode of Instruction: Classroom
Standard time to completion: 36 months

Program Overview

In line with the mission of Antioch University, the BA in Liberal Studies degree completion program is a 180-quarter-credit program built on principles of rigorous liberal arts education, lifelong learning and social responsibility. Guided by these principles, the curriculum places the student at the center of their learning process. Antioch offers a bachelor’s degree completion opportunity for self-directed learners ready to steer their own educational pathways.

Students come to AUS with backgrounds ranging from recent community college experience to students with up to 30 or more years of work and life experiences. Students in the BA in Liberal Studies Program may have accumulated college credits from other accredited institutions, from recognized testing processes, from military service, and/or from prior learning experience. From these diverse backgrounds, BA Liberal Studies students, with faculty guidance, design their own plans of study to round out liberal arts learning outcomes and focus on an area of personal and career interest.

The BA degree completion program is designed to meet learners where they are personally, professionally and academically. Antioch’s BA in Liberal Studies program is meant for the learner who is planning, among other things, to:

  • Change career directions
  • Get a promotion
  • Pursue a new job opportunity
  • Attend graduate school
  • Become a community or environmental activist
  • Launch one’s life dream/project
  • Experience the personal fulfillment of completing a bachelor’s degree

Many Antioch BA students are currently employed and have clear personal and professional goals. They are managers, artists, small business owners, social service workers, parents, community activists, military veterans, independent scholars and recent (or not-so-recent) graduates of community and technical colleges. Others are at early stages of their careers and want to explore ways to match their ideals with their studies and future work, especially with regard to social change and social justice.

All these students share:

  • A desire to shape their education to fit professional and personal goals
  • Interest in self-directed learning
  • Drive for a personally meaningful education
  • Strong motivation to enhance their professional and personal lives
  • Appreciation of the value of collaboration
  • Strong desire to make a significant contribution to society and create social change

Customization is Key

In the BA program, each study plan is based on the student’s past experience, current needs and interests, and future goals. Students work in close collaboration with faculty advisors, instructors and other students to shape their studies. Students build on earlier college work and on skills learned at home, at work, through independent reading and volunteer activities.

MA/Graduate Pathway (12 overlapping credits)

The MA pathway provides an accelerated route for qualified students in the BA in Liberal Studies Program to transition into a graduate program at Antioch University while completing their undergraduate coursework. The Pathway requires acceptance into an Antioch Master’s degree program, of which there are many options in Psychology and Education. Students apply to the MA program when they are within approximately 3-4 quarters of finishing their BA. If accepted into an MA program, the student launches into the first 12 credits of their graduate program while completing the BA in Liberal Studies degree.

Core Curriculum

A core curriculum in liberal studies supports students to design and successfully complete their bachelor’s degree. Students begin with a liberal studies seminar in which they explore the liberal arts in relation to their own interests, needs and goals. Throughout their time at Antioch, students also pursue liberal studies chosen from offerings both at Antioch and at other institutions. They study the diversity of the human community, evaluate and demonstrate their own personal academic strengths and work collaboratively with other students. They share the results of their own studies and express their creativity in peer group settings. All students do a project in the community during their time at Antioch. Students finish with a capstone project that brings various elements of their learning together into a coherent synthesis.

Areas of Academic Concentration

In consultation with their academic advisors, students create a concentration that is in many ways like a traditional academic major. The significant difference is that students help design the combination of courses that make up their area of concentration, creating a unique mix of lower and upper division, and interdisciplinary coursework. In this way, students develop an area of concentration around their intellectual interests and career goals, drawing on past or current passions to shape concentrations that prepare them for graduate study or future career changes.

Concentrations require a minimum 40 quarter credits of coursework, comprised of transfer courses, prior learning, Antioch courses, independent studies, service learning, internships, and other learning activities. Concentrations must include a minimum 3 credits of community-based learning, and a final, capstone/senior synthesis project.

Students choose concentrations in one of two ways: 1) Individualized Concentrations are created through a degree committee structure, where the student, an academic advisor and two community advisors guide the student to design learning activities to form a coherent plan of disciplinary or interdisciplinary study, named by the student. Or, 2) Students choose one of the several areas of concentration established by the BA faculty drawing from a curriculum designed specifically to support these fields of study. In either instance, the student develops a learning plan with advisor approval to fulfill the area of concentration requirement.

Optional Emphasis Areas (12 quarter credits minimum)

Students may elect an ‘emphasis’ of in-depth study within their area of concentration. These emphasis areas provide students with a specialized area of knowledge and skills. Emphasis areas are framed by the student, approved by the academic advisor, and must comprise at least 12 quarter credits that cohere around a central topic.

Individualized Area of Concentration

If none of the above choices works, a student can design their own academic concentration. Students who choose the individualized option work with a degree committee composed of the student, their academic advisor, and two specialists in the area of concentration. Degree Committees meet three times spaced over the student’s time at Antioch to help design and, in the end, evaluate the student’s program. For example, a student who studies psychology, art and social justice may have committee members from the community who are art therapists or are working in mental health clinics for disenfranchised people. These concentrations are shaped to personal interests and often cross disciplines.

Examples of individualized Areas of Concentration from recent graduates are:

  • Sustainable Communities
  • Change Management
  • Somatics, Psychology and Dance
  • Children, Family and Community
  • Film and Social Change
  • Culinary Anthropology

Current Tuition and Fees

University Tuition and Fees  

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