What is a Bachelor of Liberal Studies?

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  • Written By: Sheri Cyprus
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 07 October 2018
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A Bachelor of Liberal Studies (BLibSt) is an academic degree that is generalized rather than specialized. It's usually considered to be a well-rounded, world-oriented degree meant to provide the college student with problem solving and critical thinking skills within multiple disciplines. The program for a Bachelor of Liberal Studies degree often includes courses in literature, arts, history, science, math, humanities and physical education.

The physical education requirement for a Liberal Studies education may range from a single course to a varied program. Math courses for a BLibSt degree could include logic as well as subjects such as geometry and calculus. Both the social and natural sciences are typically included in a Bachelor of Liberal Studies program, with the emphasis in these being a global perspective. For example, social sciences in a BLibSt education could include worldwide sociology, while natural science electives or core courses may focus on volcanoes in the world.

History-based BLibSt classes often cover diverse areas such as art and war. World history courses taken as part of a Bachelor of Liberal Studies program typically focus on different countries or continents. Arts-based liberal studies courses often include both visual and performing varieties. For example, a performing arts liberal studies class may be theater-related or more literature-based such as poetry reading. Communication skills of all types are usually strongly emphasized in a liberal studies education; students must be able to express themselves orally as well as in writing.


A BLibSt degree may be accepted in fields from banking to writing. Public relations and teaching are other careers in which a Bachelor of Liberal Studies is common. Basically, this type of undergraduate degree is often acceptable in entry-level career positions that require a width of general knowledge rather that a depth of education on one subject. Typically though, additional, more focused courses are also required in areas such as banking and teaching. Public relations and writing professionals who specialize in a certain area such as marketing would then need to add or include classes on their specialty subject area in order to complete their education.

Depending on the country and particular school, a Bachelor of Liberal Studies degree may be referred to as a Bachelor of Humanities program. This is because the degree usually includes humanities classes that relate to culture, history and social studies. Philosophy and religion are humanities elective courses available in many BLibSt or Bachelor of Humanities degree programs.



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