Earn a graduate degree at Wesleyan!

The Graduate Liberal Studies (GLS) program at Wesleyan University offers both Master of Arts in Liberal Studies (MALS) and Master of Philosophy in Liberal Arts (MPhil) degree options. Both options feature individualized courses of study in the humanities, social sciences, arts, mathematics, and the sciences, as well as flexible scheduling options for full-time and part-time students—including summers-only study for educators. Explore the concentration areas below, and find easy-to-print pdfs of the information when you need to present your academic plan! 

Not interested in pursuing a graduate degree right now? GLS also offers a six-course Graduate Certificate in Writing and other non-degree options.

Connecticut Teachers and Professional Certification 
We are pleased to announce that the CT State Department of Education has confirmed that Wesleyan’s MALS and MPhil in Liberal Arts both qualify for the Master’s degree requirements for a professional educator certificate. Especially in light of the subject area concentration expected for professional certification, Graduate Liberal Studies is able to provide CT teachers with exciting graduate level options for certification needs, in accordance with the guidelines published by the State in November 2016. Teachers pursuing non-content degrees elsewhere may utilize our non-degree courses option to fulfill the required content credit, as permitted by their degree program and supervisor. Email masters@wesleyan.edu, call 860.685.2900, or visit wesleyan.edu/masters for more information.

Why Wesleyan?
Wesleyan is a world-class liberal arts university with an international reputation for excellence. Our GLS program provides you with the opportunity to pursue your professional goals, study with Wesleyan’s renown faculty, and receive full access to the university’s first-rate library system, lectures, films, gallery shows, conferences, workshops, live performances in theater, dance and music, and more.

Flexible Schedules, Designed with You in Mind
Graduate Liberal Studies (GLS) at Wesleyan offers a variety of study options to suit your needs. Have summers off? Try our summer-study option. Live more than 20 miles from the Wesleyan campus? Online GLS courses might be the right choice for you. Standard, summers-only, immersion, and online study options are available. Your schedule. Your choice.

GLS students can begin their course of study at any time and can take off up to three semesters between classes or apply for a leave of absence for longer periods. GLS degree candidates have six years to fulfill the requirements of their program, but may petition for a seventh or eighth year.

GLS Concentrations

Click the links below to view details for each concentration.

  • ARTS

    The arts program at Wesleyan seeks to reflect the diversity of creative, technical, and academic approaches practiced across the arts, emphasizing the critical importance of interdisciplinary studies to the development of a personal practice or teaching core. Broadly speaking, arts courses may be in-studio arts, photography, film, art history, design, music history, or ethnomusicology, among other disciplines. Educators pursuing a Master of Arts in Liberal Studies (MALS) degree with a concentration in the arts gain fluency in the analytical and critical vocabulary of visual and aural creative language, with a self-selected emphasis on technique and style, as a means to explore intellectual issues and the human experience.

    PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS: MALS/Arts – 12 courses (36 credits)

    6 courses (18 credits) within the arts concentration. Students may choose the six courses from our arts curriculum, or propose independent studies, that best meet their professional needs. Their academic plan may include a combination of studio art, music, design, film, and art history courses—or may be restricted to a particular area, i.e., visual art techniques or world music. All students are encouraged to take a foundational writing course option within the arts concentration, to receive more extensive feedback on their work through more frequent writing assignments and individual meetings with the instructor.

    Recent courses and course areas in the arts have included:

    Abstract Drawing
    Jazz History
    Landscape Photography
    History of Rock and R&B
    Music of Africa and Its Diaspora
    Photographic Portraiture
    Sumi-e Painting
    Documentary Film
    Monotype Printmaking
    Watercolor Painting

    6 courses (18 credits) outside the area of concentration. Of the remaining six courses, students must choose from at least two of the other areas of concentration (humanities, social sciences, mathematics, and the sciences) but may distribute their credits in a way that most effectively accomplishes their personal and professional goals. Below is a sampling of highly relevant out-of-concentration courses for educators:

    Memoir Writing (Humanities) – Photojournalism
    New York City in the 1940s (Humanities) – Interdisciplinary Course
    Adolescent Brain Development (Sciences) – Student Dynamics/Education Studies
    Natural History of Autumn (Sciences) – Visual Imagery
    Testing and Educational Policy (Social Sciences) – Education Studies
    Cross-Cultural Childhoods (Social Sciences) – Education Studies

    Optional master’s essay or creative project instead of twelfth course. Students may choose to replace their twelfth course with a master’s essay or creative project. The master’s essay is a 25- to 30-page capstone project of publication quality, while the creative project is expected to result in a portfolio of gallery- or performance-quality work, accompanied by a critical essay. Students must go through a comprehensive proposal process, working one-on-one with librarians, the GLS writing consultant, and a faculty advisor. 

  • HUMANITIES

    Humanities

    Click here to download a printable PDF of this information.

    The humanities at Wesleyan encompasses a multitude of ways in which people observe, review, process, and document the human experience. Broadly speaking, humanities courses may be in classics, literature, language, philosophy, or cultural theory, among other disciplines. More specifically, writing (creative as well as nonfiction), poetry, literature studies, literary theory, and area studies (European novel, classical civilization) that focus on literature, philosophy, and cultural theory may be pursued through the humanities concentration.

    Educators pursuing a Master of Arts in Liberal Studies (MALS) degree with a concentration in the humanities gain a unique interdisciplinary perspective on the connections between literature, history, political movements, and social structures, in addition to a highly refined ability to write both fluently and articulately about their opinions and observations.

    PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS: MALS/Humanities – 12 courses (36 credits)

    6 courses (18 credits) within the humanities concentration. Students may choose six courses from our humanities curriculum, or propose independent studies, that best meet their professional needs. Their academic plan may include a mixture of literature, poetry, and writing workshops, or may be restricted to a particular area, i.e., American and British Literature or world literature. All students are encouraged to take a foundational writing course option within the humanities concentration, to receive more extensive feedback on their work through more frequent writing assignments and individual meetings with the instructor.

    Recent courses and course areas in the humanities have included:

    New Trends in Fiction & Nonfiction
    Writing and Revision
    The European Novel
    Creative Writing Workshop
    Arthurian Legend
    American Lit. since the Civil War
    Nobel Literature Prize Writers
    Place, Character and Design
    Children’s Literature
    Epic Novels: Tolstoy and Joyce
    The Art of Memoir
    Incarceration in American Literature

    6 courses (18 credits) outside the humanities concentration. Of the remaining six courses, students must choose from at least two of the other areas of concentration (arts, social sciences, mathematics, sciences), but may distribute their credits in a way that most effectively accomplishes their personal and professional goals. Below is a sampling of highly relevant out- of-concentration courses for educators:

    The Constitution (Social Sciences) – American Literature
    The Tudors (Social Sciences) – British Literature
    Adolescent Brain Development (Sciences) – Student Dynamics/Educational Studies
    Music and Downtown New York (Arts) – American Literature
    Testing and Educational Policy (Social Sciences) – Educational Studies
    Cross-Cultural Childhoods (Social Sciences) – Educational Studies

    Optional master’s essay instead of twelfth course. MALS candidates may choose to replace their twelfth course with a Master’s Essay, a 25- to 30-page capstone project of publication quality. Students must go through a comprehensive proposal process, working one-on-one with librarians, the GLS writing consultant, and a faculty advisor. 

  • MATHEMATICS

    Mathematics at Wesleyan University includes areas as diverse as knot theory, applied data analysis, calculus, and more. Mathematics students are also encouraged to pursue independent study with faculty to gain skill sets in the areas where they need it most. Courses provide students with critical skills, and Wesleyan’s renowned faculty employ pedagogical tools that teachers will want to bring back to their own classrooms.

    Educators pursuing a Master of Arts in Liberal Studies (MALS) degree with a mathematics concentration gain highly refined analytical skills in addition to the ability to write fluently and articulately about a range of topics and research findings.

    PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS: MALS/Mathematics – 12 courses (36 credits)

    6 courses (18 credits) within the mathematics concentration. Students may choose six courses from our mathematics curriculum, or propose independent studies, that best meet their professional needs. Typically, one course in this area is offered per semester. All students are encouraged to take a foundational writing course option within the mathematics concentration, to receive more extensive feedback on their work through more frequent writing assignments and individual meetings with the instructor.

    Recent courses and course areas in the mathematics have included:

    Multivariable Calculus
    Mathematical Modeling
    Knot Theory
    Paradigms in Computing
    Complex Numbers
    Graph Theory
    Applied Data Analysis
    Independent tutorials & essay projects

    6 courses (18 credits) outside the mathematics concentration. Of the remaining six courses needed to meet graduation requirements, students must choose from at least two of the other areas of concentration (arts, humanities, social sciences, sciences), but may distribute their credits in a way that most effectively accomplishes their personal and professional goals. Below is a sampling of highly relevant out-of-concentration courses for educators:

    Economic Policy in the US (Social Sciences) – Mathematical Applications
    Writing Non-Fiction (Humanities) – Writing Essentials for Students of Math
    Adolescent Brain Development (Sciences) – Student Dynamics
    Learning, Memory and Cognition (Sciences) – Education Studies
    Testing and Educational Policy (Sciences) – Education Studies
    Cross-Cultural Childhoods (Social Sciences) – Education Studies

    Optional master’s essay instead of twelfth course. MALS candidates may choose to replace their twelfth course with a Master’s Essay, a 25- to 30-page capstone project of publication quality. Students must go through a comprehensive proposal process, working one- on-one with librarians, the GLS writing consultant, and a faculty advisor. 

  • SCIENCES

    Sciences

    Click here to download a printable PDF of this information.

    The sciences at Wesleyan include areas such as environmental field science, biology, astronomy, psychology, forensics, data analysis, and more. Students seeking specialized training in chemistry, physics, or in other areas, may arrange to work one-on-one with Wesleyan faculty to pursue their personal and professional interests.

    Educators pursuing a Master of Arts in Liberal Studies (MALS) degree with a concentration in the sciences gain hands-on experience in the field and the opportunity to pursue research in those areas of greatest interest to them.

    PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS: MALS/Sciences – 12 courses (36 credits)

    6 courses (18 credits) within the sciences concentration. Students may choose six courses from our sciences curriculum, or propose independent studies, that best meet their professional needs. Their academic plan may include courses primarily from one area (biology, environmental science, etc.) or may be interdisciplinary. All students are encouraged to take a foundational writing course option within the sciences concentration, to receive more extensive feedback on their work through more frequent writing assignments and individual meetings with the instructor.

    Recent courses and course areas in the sciences have included:

    Biology of Birds
    History of Astronomy
    Molecular Biology
    Life-Span Development
    Coastal Ecology
    Ecology of Northeastern Trees
    Biology of Mammals
    Emotions, Motivation and Development 
    The Connecticut River
    Neuroscience and Behavior
    Applied Data Analysis
    Animal Reproduction

    6 courses (18 credits) outside the sciences concentration. Of the remaining six courses, students must choose from at least two of the other areas of concentration (the arts, humanities, mathematics, social sciences), but may distribute their credits in a way that most effectively accomplishes their personal and professional goals. Below is a sampling of highly relevant out-of-concentration courses for educators:

    Farming in America (Social Sciences) – Science in Action (agriculture)
    Writing Non-Fiction (Humanities) – Writing Essentials for Students of Science
    Adolescent Brain Development (Social Sciences) – Student Dynamics/Education Studies
    Applied Data Analysis (Mathematics) – Statistics/Data Analysis
    Testing and Educational Policy (Social Sciences) – Education Studies
    Cross-Cultural Childhoods (Social Sciences) – Education Studies

    Optional master’s essay instead of twelfth course. MALS candidates may choose to replace their twelfth course with a Master’s Essay, a 25- to 30-page capstone project of publication quality. Students must go through a comprehensive proposal process, working one- on-one with librarians, the GLS writing consultant, and a faculty advisor. 

  • SOCIAL SCIENCES

    The social sciences at Wesleyan includes disciplines such as government, economics, sociology, history, American studies, anthropology, psychology, political science, and more. Courses provide students with excellent research and critical analysis skills, making further independent study and content development a simpler, richer, and more rewarding task.

    Educators pursuing a Master of Arts in Liberal Studies (MALS) degree with a social sciences concentration gain an increased skill set in research and analysis, as well as the ability to write articulately and fluently about the topics of most interest to them.

    PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS: MALS/Social Sciences – 12 courses (36 credits)

    6 courses (18 credits) within the social sciences concentration. Students may choose six courses from our social sciences curriculum, or propose independent studies, that best meet their professional needs. Their academic plan may include a mixture of history, government, anthropology, and psychology, or may be restricted to European and American studies, or psychology, or globalization, etc. All students are encouraged to take a foundational writing course option within the social sciences concentration, to receive more extensive feedback on their work through more frequent writing assignments and individual meetings with the instructor.

    Recent courses and course areas in the mathematics have included:

    The Constitution
    Emotions, Motivation & Development
    Religion, Science, and Empire
    Diplomacy and Decision-making
    International Politics
    Conceptual Development
    Cinematic Cultural Encounters:
    War & Society: Religion on the Flat Screen 
    The Crusades
    Positive Psychology
    History of Astronomy
    History of Europe Since 1945

    6 courses (18 credits) outside the social sciences concentration. Of the remaining six courses, students must choose from at least two of the other areas of concentration (arts, humanities, mathematics, sciences), but may distribute their credits in a way that most effectively accomplishes their personal and professional goals. Below is a sampling of highly relevant out-of-concentration courses for educators:

    The European Novel (Humanities) – European Cultural History
    New York City in the 1940s (Humanities) – American Studies
    Adolescent Brain Development (Sciences) – Student Dynamics/Education Studies
    Applied Data Analysis (Mathematics) – Statistics/Data Analysis
    Testing and Educational Policy (Sciences) – Education Studies
    Cross-Cultural Childhoods (Sciences) – Education Studies

    Optional master’s essay instead of twelfth course. MALS candidates may choose to replace their twelfth course with a Master’s Essay, a 25- to 30-page capstone project of publication quality. Students must go through a comprehensive proposal process, working one- on-one with librarians, the GLS writing consultant, and a faculty advisor.