Liberal Studies

Liberal Studies

Degree Type
Bachelor of Arts
Bachelor of Science
Honors Bachelor of Arts
Honors Bachelor of Science
College of Liberal Arts


Our world is increasingly complex. The people who understand and communicate about it best often have the well-rounded education that a liberal studies degree can provide.

As a liberal studies major, you’ll design your own program of study choosing from subjects offered in the OSU College of Liberal Arts disciplines — fine arts, humanities and social studies. You’ll choose from classes that broaden and deepen your knowledge in American studies, anthropology, art, English, communication, graphic design, new media communication, political science, psychology, social science sociology and writing.

You’ll organize your plan of study around a theme. You can select a pre-designed theme or work with an advisor to choose courses and design a theme to support your personal and career goals.

Your custom curriculum will give you critical thinking skills that can help you make a big picture relevant or a small example powerful. It’s a background that will give you a leg up in your career — whether it’s teaching, public relations, business, or even law. Employers want people who can collaborate, write and speak well. They need individuals like you who can translate our complex world into stories that can move and persuade, and make a positive impact.


Program Information

A total of 180 quarter credits are required to graduate, including 60 upper-division credits. Requirements include:

  • Baccalaureate core: 48 or more credits
  • College of Liberal Arts Core: 15 credits
  • Bachelor of Arts/Bachelor of Science requirements: 15-24 credits
  • Liberal studies major: 45-52 credits
  • Electives if need to complete 180 total credits

Degree Guides

Liberal Studies Degree Guide (PDF)
Plan of Study and Theme

Transfer Guides

COCC Liberal Studies Transfer Guide

Oregon Community College Liberal Studies Transfer Guides


Using the following course forecast information students will plan ahead and work with their advisor to create and update academic plans.

OSU Course Catalog

OSU Class Search

College of Liberal Arts Courses

College of Liberal Arts Core Courses


Upon successful completion of the program, students will meet the following learning outcomes:

  • Competency and knowledge in multiple fields.
  • Demonstrate critical thinking.
  • Reflect on pluralism and cultural legacies.
  • Engage in active collaboration.
  • Employ written communication.
  • Preparation for global citizenship.


Choose from pre-designed themes. Or design a curriculum that will get you where you want to go.


See public relations, teaching or law school in your future? Liberal Studies is a great place to start.



Stories matter. Top global economists say we need more people who can translate complex information into human stories.


Student Spotlight

Where she thrives

Alexa Tawzer loves writing and reading science fiction and fantasy. But one communications class proved to this Honors College student that what fascinates her is human conversation. So much so that she joined Professor Natalie Dollar’s Community Dialogue project to research how people discuss and debate — and find agreement. It’s been a journey from being homeschooled, to attending community college, to finally landing at OSU-Cascades. Now with a Finley Academic Excellence Scholarship and a passion for how people connect, this Bend Beav’s future is launching.

Alumni Spotlight

OSU Fulbright student

Marichelle Gurski graduated in 2021 with a bachelor of arts degree in Liberal Studies with a focus in Psychology from OSU Cascades. With the Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship in Germany, Marichelle will use her five years of German language study, TEFL certification, and prior teaching experience in special education to build relationships with her students in a German classroom. She hopes to further explore German values, policies, art, and literature and expand on her abilities as a culturally competent educator. Upon return, Marichelle plans to earn a master’s degree in German and Psychology and make steps towards becoming a professor with a global perspective.

Sample Courses

  • History of Design
  • Small Group Communication
  • Studies in Nonfiction
  • Introduction to Rhetorical Theory
  • Community Dialogue
  • Peoples of the World-Africa Anthropology
  • 20th Century Europe
  • Modern Political Thought
  • Abnormal Psychology
  • Writing for the Web
  • American Women Writers
  • American Culture and Vietnam
  • Cultural Codes in Communication
  • The American Novel - Beginnings to Chopin

Course Listing

Where do our graduates work?

  • Aspen Skiing Company
  • Bend La Pine School District
  • Bureau of Land Management
  • Columbia Distributing
  • Deschutes Public Library
  • Heathman Hotel
  • Hill Shadow Pictures
  • Mt. Bachelor, Inc.
  • Newport Veterans Medical Center
  • National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration
  • Oregon Corporate Accountability Act
  • U.S. Tax Court


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Contact Us

We're here to help! Future students can connect with an OSU-Cascades admissions advisor for admission and program questions.