Skip to Navigation
University of Pittsburgh    
 
    
 
  Nov 24, 2017
 
2017-2018 Undergraduate Catalog

Humanities, BA


Return to Academic Programs Return to: Academic Programs

Humanities is a liberal arts major with a focus on courses from three humanities departments. This major can be customized to meet your interests and personal or career goals. You will choose to concentrate in three areas from the list below and have the opportunity to take a variety of courses within those areas of study.

Humanities degree graduates have a variety of skills that make them attractive to prospective employers. Career fields pursued by humanities graduates include the following:

  • Acting and drama
  • College administration
  • Event planning
  • Human resources
  • Politics
  • Teaching
  • Publishing
  • Journalism
  • Marketing and advertising
  • Public relations
  • Insurance
  • Real estate
  • Social work
  • Occupational therapy
  • Travel and tourism

Requirements


Students must earn a minimum of 120 credits for the Bachelor of Arts degree with a major in humanities. Of this total, students must take a minimum of 36 credits (approximately 12 courses) according to the specifications below. The remaining credits required for the degree are outlined in the General Education Requirements section on this page.

Standard Option


Choose a minimum of 36 credits (approximately 12 courses) from any three departments/programs below. All courses taken must be humanities related.

  • Africana Studies (courses must be humanities related)
  • Classics
  • Communication
  • English Composition (0300 and above)
  • Film Studies
  • English Literature 
  • English Writing 
  • Foreign language departments (literature and culture courses)
  • History of Art and Architecture
  • Music
  • Philosophy
  • Religious Studies (courses must be humanities related)
  • Studio Arts
  • Theatre Arts

Notes


  • At least five courses must be taken from one department, and at least three courses must be taken from each of the two other departments.
  • At least half of the courses taken for the major must be upper-division (1000-level) courses.
  • All courses selected for the humanities major must be approved by an academic advisor.

Requirements are subject to change. Check with an academic advisor before registering.

An internship program is available through the College of General Studies. Please see an advisor for additional information.

Pre-Education Options


The College of General Studies and the Pitt School of Education have collaborated on a curriculum within the humanities major that incorporates all of the prerequisite course work needed for admission into the certificate program in comprehensive English education. This option may be used by students interested in the Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) or Professional Year (PY) programs offered in the School of Education. Completion of the prerequisites for the School of Education does not guarantee acceptance to its programs.

Students pursuing this track take a wide variety of English courses in literature, writing/composition, and literary/film/media theory, in addition to a required foundations course in special education, for a total of 36 credits (approximately 12 courses). At least half of these courses must be at the 1000 level. Students are also encouraged to participate in an internship during their degree program and may fulfill some CGS general education and major requirements by completing a study abroad program. See a CGS advisor for more information.

General Education Requirements


To earn a Bachelor of Arts or a Bachelor of Science degree in the College of General Studies, you must satisfactorily complete a minimum of 120 credits (approximately 40 courses), at least 30 credits of which must be in upper-division (1000-level) courses. These 1000-level courses may come from any of the requirements for the degree listed below. Requirements are subject to change; students should check with an academic advisor before registering. Approved courses are listed each term at www.cgs.pitt.edu

Skills (15 credits minimum)


Certain tools of knowledge are required of all students in the baccalaureate degree program: ability to use the English language orally and in writing and ability to understand and use basic mathematical symbols. The courses required to satisfy each of the skills requirements are listed below:

Writing-9 credits minimum


ENGCMP 0200   - ENGCMP 0208  and two other courses from English composition (ENGCMP) or English writing (ENGWRT), or those designated W (writing).

Note: At least 3 credits of composition/writing must be from the University of Pittsburgh.

Note:


Students admitted to CGS for the fall term 2008 (2091) and thereafter are required to complete the public speaking, math, and first University writing course (ENGCMP 0200  or above) with a C- or better grade.

Quantitative and Formal Reasoning (3 credits minimum)


In addition to the acquisition of certain tools of knowledge through the skills requirements, students also need to acquire the ability to apply logic and formal reasoning to reading, writing, and thinking. Choose one course from the following list:

Understandings (27 credits)


A liberal education provides broad exposure to the three major bodies of knowledge-humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences. Students are exposed to social, scientific, aesthetic, moral, and religious information, the purpose of which is to furnish insight into how the concerns of people are interrelated, how knowledge has been accumulated, and how unsolved problems still challenge humanity. The courses needed to fulfill the understandings requirements are listed below.

Humanities (9 credits)


Three courses (one at the 1000 level) distributed over three of the disciplines listed below:

Africana Studies Japanese*
Classics Linguistics
Communication Music
English Composition Philosophy
English Film Religious studies
English Literature Russian*
English Writing Slovak*
French* Spanish*
German* Studio Arts
History of Art and Architecture Theatre Arts
Italian*  

*literature and culture courses

Social Sciences (9 credits)


Three courses (one at the 1000 level) distributed over three of the disciplines listed below:

Africana Studies Legal Studies
Anthropology Political Science
Economics Psychology
Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies Religious Studies
History Sociology
Jewish Studies Urban Studies

Natural Sciences (9 credits)


Three courses distributed over two or three of the disciplines listed below:

Anthropology History and philosophy of science
Astronomy Neuroscience
Biological sciences Physics
Chemistry Psychology
Geology and environmental science  

As these tables show, some departments have courses used in different categories. For the list of approved courses, view Academics at www.cgs.pitt.edu.

Literature (3 credits)


This requirement introduces students to works of literature that have abiding value and, in the process, to the techniques of literary interpretation. This one-course requirement may also be fulfilled from disciplines other than English.

History (3 credits)


The study of history provides an understanding of contemporary society from the viewpoint of long-term change. This one-course requirement may also be fulfilled with courses other than those offered by the Department of History.

Note


A course can be used to fulfill only one requirement in the categories of understandings, literature, and history.

International Perspective (9 credits minimum)


The world of today is economically, politically, and culturally interdependent. In the 21st century, knowledge of countries has become essential. This three-course requirement may be fulfilled by taking internationally focused courses offered by a variety of departments. At least one of the courses must be a non-Western course. All international courses may overlap with another requirement.

Specialized Study (the Major) (30-36 credits)


The baccalaureate degree, in addition to providing certain skills and broad exposure to the major bodies of knowledge, also allows the opportunity to specialize in a particular field, providing depth of experience essential for vocational competence or further graduate study. An outline of each major may be obtained at the CGS information display in 1400 Wesley W. Posvar Hall or on the CGS Web site, www.cgs.pitt.edu.

Students admitted to CGS can choose from the following majors. The majors indicated by asterisks are also available by combining Saturday and CGS Online courses.

  • Administration of justice*
  • Dental hygiene (for licensed dental hygienists)
  • Health services (BA and BS)
  • Humanities*
  • Legal studies
  • Media and professional communications
  • Natural sciences
  • Public service
  • Social sciences*

Students who want a major in an arts and sciences field can begin in CGS and transfer to Arts and Sciences after completing 12 credits including the mathematics and seminar in composition requirements. Admission is determined by Arts and Sciences.

Electives


Any credits not used specifically to satisfy the previous requirements are considered electives. Electives can be taken in a wide variety of subjects to complement, reinforce, or add further breadth to the chosen program of study or to help meet the requirements of aminor or certificate program. Students may have no more than 18 credits in professional courses, such as administration of justice, business, education, engineering, information science, public service, and social work, as electives.

Preparation for Professional Programs

Prerequisite courses for the following programs may be taken through CGS prior to applying to another Pitt school.

• Business • Education • Engineering • Health and Rehabilitation Sciences • Information Science • Nursing • Pharmacy • Social Work

Notes


Requirements are subject to change. Check with an academic advisor before registering.

An internship program is available through the College of General Studies. Please see your advisor for additional information.

For more information, contact the University of Pittsburgh College of General Studies.

Return to Academic Programs Return to: Academic Programs