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Degree Requirements

A total of 30 credits is required to complete the MALS program.  This includes nine classes (27 credits) and a capstone research project (3 credits).

There are two factors that govern the nine courses required for the MALS degree: the type of course and the subject matter of the course.

TYPES OF MALS COURSES

Guidelines for Students at Camden Campus

There are three types of courses that are listed under MALS numbers:

  • Special MALS seminars. These are graduate classes offered specifically for MALS students. The majority of students in these classes will be MALS students, though other graduate students, and occasionally undergraduate students may be permitted to enroll.  They are notated with “Special MALS seminar” on the MALS website and registrar’s listings. You are encouraged to take at least two courses in this category.
  • Cross-listed graduate classes from other graduate programs. These are courses offered primarily for students in other graduate programs (e.g., history, English, childhood studies, psychology, etc.), but they also permit a small number of MALS students to enroll.
  • Cross-listed advanced undergraduate courses. Certain undergraduate courses that are 300-level and above will allow a small number of MALS students to enroll for graduate credit using a MALS course number. The majority of students in these classes will be undergraduates. MALS students taking such courses for graduate credit are generally expected to complete additional readings or assignments beyond what is required of undergraduate students. You may take no more than two courses in this category. (You will usually be able to identify cross-listed undergraduate classes by checking cross-listed course numbers. A MALS class that is cross-listed with a course that starts with 50 is probably an undergrad class.
  • Online MALS classes. An important part of the MALS experience is the actual face-to-face discussions that happen in graduate seminars.  Online courses offer a different kind of educational experience that you are also welcome to try.   For some students, distance from Rutgers and/or scheduling issues may make it difficult or impossible to take face-to-face MALS classes.   Such students may choose to complete the degree entirely or almost entirely online.   You should be aware that there is a smaller selection of on-line courses than face-to-face courses, though the number of on-line courses will be increasing in response to demand for those classes. 
  • Graduate and undergraduate courses that are not cross-listed with MALS numbers may be eligible for MALS credit by special written permission of the MALS director.  Such courses will count under the limits listed in above.

Guidelines for Students at Joint Base (McGuire, Ft. Dix, Lakehurst)

Students at the Joint Base may take any MALS courses offered at that location.   All courses offered there are considered MALS seminars.

Students may take courses on the Camden campus subject to rules above.

Guidelines for Students in the Fully Online program

Students may take any online MALS courses offered.   The subject area rules listed below will apply.

 

SUBJECT AREAS OF MALS COURSES – Guidelines

The subject matter of the courses selected for the program should include the following areas, regardless of which of the types of courses listed above they are.

  • Courses in at least three different academic disciplines
  • At least 2 courses (6 credits) in humanities (art, history, literature, philosophy, religion, etc.)
  • At least 2 courses (6 credits) in social sciences (anthropology, psychology, political science, sociology, criminal justice, etc.)
  • 1 course on either non-western cultures or issues pertaining to gender and/or minorities 

 

OTHER POLICIES

Academic Standing and Academic Probation

No more than two courses with grades lower than a B may be counted toward the degree. Two grades lower than B will result in academic probation. Any additional grade lower than a B will result in dismissal from the program.

Transfer credit from other graduate programs

Up to 10 graduate credits (3 courses) with grades of B or better may be transferred from other graduate programs either within Rutgers or at other universities, with the approval of the graduate program director. Professional training courses in fields like education, social work, business, or nursing are generally NOT eligible for transfer credit   Transfer credit is awarded only after a student has complete 12 credits in the MALS program.

Capstone Project

For the final class in the program, students will enroll in a special independent research course (56:606:698, 690) and complete a research paper under faculty supervision on a topic of particular interest to the individual student. See instructions below for capstone projects.

Please consult the MALS program director if you have any questions about these requirements.

Capstone course instructions

GRADUATE LIBERAL STUDIES COURSES

56:606:501,502,503,504,505 Studies of the Ancient and Medieval Eras 
The foundations of western thought in classical antiquity and the Middle Ages. Topics vary from term to term. Treatment of themes such as the individual and society in ancient Athens ; pagans and Christians before and after the fall of Rome ; cultures in conflict in the Near East.

56:606:511,512,513,514,515 Studies of the Early Modern Era 
Cultural development between about 1500 and 1789. Topics vary from term to term. Focus on topics such as the Italian Renaissance, the world of William Shakespeare, the scientific revolution of the 17th century, and the French enlightenment of the 18th century.

56:606:521,522,523,524,525 Studies of the Age of Revolutions 
Interrelationships between social and cultural development between the French Revolution and the First World War. Attention given to such phenomena as debates about industrialization, the social novel, and the depiction of urban society in the visual arts.

56:606:531,532,533,534,535 Studies of the 20th Century 
Various aspects of the era that began with the outbreak of the First World War. Topics vary from term to term. Exploration of themes such as war and tyranny in literature, conflicting ideas about science and technology, and the rise of popular culture in Europe and America.

56:606:541,542,543,544,545 Studies of Cultural Diversity 
Either in historical or contemporary perspective, treatment of issues pertaining to gender, race, or ethnicity within western societies or examination of various developments in one or more nonwestern societies.

56:606:601,602,603,604,605 Studies of Ideas 
Examination of ideas about the natural world and the human conditions that are rooted in the past but still have enduring significance.  

56:606:608,609,610,611,612 Studies of the Arts and Literature 
Opportunity to explore a particular theme in the history of culture. Course may focus heavily on influential contemporary developments.

56:606:613,614 International Study Abroad 
Short-term study trip abroad focusing on a literary figure or theme, some aspect of art or architecture, or a particular component of foreign language or culture. 

56:606:621,622,623,624,625 Studies of Politics and Society 
Exploration of one or more problems rooted in the past that continue to cause controversy in the present, such as nationalism, dictatorship, freedom, poverty, and health and illness.

56:606:631,632 Studies of Culture and Criticism 
Exploration of some aspect of modern culture or the arts and the varieties of criticism exercised upon it.

56:606:641,642,643,644,645 Studies of Philosophy and Religion 
Exploration of major philosophical and religious ideas from a variety of traditions, shedding light on different approaches to the meaning of human life and the ethical values that guide it. The social, cultural, and political roots and consequences of these ideas may also be considered.

56:606:651,652,653,654,655 Studies in Psychological Theories and Research 
Exploration of current psychological theories and research about human emotion, behavior, thought, and perception.

56:606:661,662,663,664,665 Women, Gender, and Sexuality 
This course, drawn from a variety of disciplines, present the results of gender analysis applied to literature, history, psychology, religion, and other fields.

56:606:671,672,673,674,675 Studies in Historical Analysis 
Courses in this category apply the historical method to different topics, places, and times.

56:606:681,682,683,684,685 Studies in Non-Western Cultures and Societies 
Courses under this category explore the literature, culture, and overall world views of non-western societies.

56:606:689,690 Research in Liberal Studies 
Independent study of a topic of special interest to the student, under the supervision of an adviser chosen in consultation with the program director. If this course is taken for one term, the project culminates in a paper about 20-25 pages in length. If the course is taken for two terms, a more substantial paper is required.

56:606:800 Matriculation Continued 
Continuous registration may be accomplished by enrolling for at least 3 credits in standard course offerings, including research courses, or by enrolling in this course for 0 credits. Students actively engaged in study toward their degree who are using university facilities and faculty time are expected to enroll for the appropriate credits.