The Liberal Arts degree is often a bit of a mystery for many people, but it seems to attract more and more students every year. Here is what Caitlin, a Liberal Arts student herself, had to say about it!
1) Variety is the spice of life!
One ‘problem’ I had at secondary school was that I didn’t really know what I wanted to study. I had previously studied the International Baccalaureate, which gave me so many options to choose from. I knew that I loved studying history and English and Japanese, but I didn’t see a way to continue this at university. After some research, I came across Liberal Arts and realised that it was the perfect fit for me! I had the ability to choose between 12 majors and still be able to study lots of other disciplines as well. My major is Classical and Hellenic studies, but I am still able to follow my love of history and politics through studying modules in those departments. I don’t think I’d be able to do that to the full extent in any other course.
2) The core modules
In each year of a Liberal Arts degree, there are core modules that aim to bring together the skills you develop from your other classes. This includes ‘Space, Power, Agency’ in second year and ‘Lives of London’ in first year. These have been my favourite modules in my degree so far – it gives you a really interesting opportunity to apply your knowledge, for example from your major discipline, to a new context. I’ve been able to apply my knowledge of Helen in the Iliad to ideas of agency and patriarchy in this module and I’ve loved it! These modules also offer a great chance to meet other people who are on your course, as you’re mixed with other students from other departments for your other classes.
3) Career opportunities and employability
Studying my Liberal Arts degree has been a really interesting point to add to my CV! The subject’s interdisciplinary nature allowed me to develop skills such as critical thinking and the ability to look at issues from a variety of perspectives. This has been really useful in my recent internship interviews; I’ve been able to define myself as a quick-thinking and resourceful student by explaining the range of subjects I study, as well as my ability to bring them all together. The Careers and Employability team at King’s also offers sessions that help you to write about your degree in an engaging way, highlighting the transferable skills you can gain from it.
4) Access to the Modern Language Centre
In first year, it is mandatory to take a module from the Modern Language Centre. The range is astounding – currently the centre offers 26 languages from British Sign Language to Farsi. I was a bit worried about taking a language at university, but the centre puts a lot of time into making sure you’re placed at the appropriate level and have enough support. If you find language interesting, there is also the option to major in a Modern Language too! I took Japanese Ab Initio when studying the International Baccalaureate before University, and continued it through the Modern Language Centre at level 3 – it was a challenge but I found it fun!
5) The people
I think my favourite part of studying Liberal Arts is the people that I meet in my classes. The core module seminars have quite a small class size, meaning you get to know the people that you’re with quite quickly. Additionally, the academics in the department are really friendly and open to supporting you in your studies. My personal tutor has been amazing at helping me solve potential problems, even when they relate to modules outside of the department. Not only that, but the subject’s interdisciplinary nature means I can meet people from a massive range of courses – something which is really helpful when you’re new to university and don’t know anyone!
To go to the Liberal Arts course page and explore related degrees at King’s College London, click here
To find out more about the Modern Languages Centre, click here
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