A liberal arts education helps students develop and enhance necessary skills of critical thought and analysis, while learning to express complex arguments clearly, concisely, and coherently in all forms of expression. Combining both a breadth and a depth of knowledge, liberal arts students know how to ask challenging questions and examine potential answers from a variety of perspectives.
If students are to achieve the breadth of a liberal arts education, they need to go beyond the requirements of the general core curriculum of Newcomb-Tulane College in terms of both basic proficiency skills and distribution requirements. Therefore, all students in the School of Liberal Arts must take courses, in addition to their general core courses, in the following areas:
A major is the means by which students achieve the depth of a liberal arts education. Students should go to Departments & Programs for links to each of the 16 departments and 19 programs in the School of Liberal Arts in which they can major, where the requirements for majors (and minors) are described. Major programs must be selected no later than the beginning of a student's fourth semester of college study.
Students may elect to complete more than one major. They must complete all courses for each major. Three courses can overlap with additional majors. At least half of the coursework required for majors must be completed at Tulane University.
Coordinate majors require a primary undergraduate major. Some coordinate majors restrict the choice of primary major. Students must complete all courses for each major. Three courses can overlap in the two majors.
A student with a 3.50 GPA may construct a unique self-designed coordinate major program of study by grouping courses from different academic departments and programs primarily in Liberal Arts. Self-designed major proposals require a petition to the Committee on Undergraduate Academic Requirements (CUAR), which may grant approval after review. To learn more about Self-designed majors and to submit your proposal, please self-enroll through the Canvas portal.
Students may complete one or two minors. A minor is optional and designed to give structure to the study of a secondary field of interest chosen by the student. Students who elect to complete the requirements for a minor must earn a grade point average of at least 2.000 in courses counting toward that minor. No courses counting toward the student’s first minor will count toward the student’s second minor.
Individual departments may have additional restrictions on major-minor overlap. Students should consult the department listings for additional information.
Exceptions to the academic requirements of the School of Liberal Arts can only be granted by petitioning the Committee on Undergraduate Academic Requirements (CUAR). Exceptions to major and minor requirements can only be granted by the department or program.
The Committee on Undergraduate Academic Requirements (CUAR) is responsible for maintaining and administering the academic standards of the School of Liberal Arts (SLA), as established by the faculty. Comprised of five SLA faculty members and in consultation with the SLA Dean’s office and Academic Advising, the committee meets monthly to formulate academic policy recommendations regarding the administration of academic progress for students in the school. The committee also considers individual student proposals for self-designed majors and petitions for waivers of academic requirements. A petition form for waiving liberal arts undergraduate academic requirements can be found here.