Benefits of a Liberal Arts Education

Historically, Indian (and Asian) students have been focused on Science, Engineering and Math. However, in the last few years, liberal arts education has gained popularity. But what exactly does it mean to have a liberal arts education? How does it benefit the student? Depending on who you ask, you may get vastly different responses.

At the highest level, a liberal arts education prepares students to evaluate ideas and develop intellectual ability, which is much needed in every field of work today. A liberal arts student will typically study pure sciences, social sciences and language and typically earn B.Sc., B.S., B.A. or a B.B.A. This provides the student a good general education and a base on which they can pursue a specialization in Law, Medicine, Science or Business.

On the other hand, an undergraduate student enrolled in computer science will focus narrowly on his branch and may learn about artificial intelligence, programming, and quantum computing. This student will typically pursue graduate studies or M.S., M.Tech. in a related field or in some cases an MBA.

There are several benefits to a liberal arts education.

#1 Interdisciplinary Approach

Liberal Arts education incorporates different areas of study into one, making people more knowledgeable and at the same time exposing them to different fields they might find interesting. It helps to get in touch with areas of study one hadn’t thought of before and explore more about that field. This broad education helps prepare them for the real world, where knowledge and perspective from different field matters.

#2 Pursue a Variety of Career Options

A liberal arts education makes you more flexible in terms of what career path you want to choose. It helps to adjust to adapting circumstances and expand your horizon as you explore various opportunities. You might get into a career which you do not like and that is where a liberal arts degree will help you. It will enable you to transition to a different field and use your previously gained knowledge and skillset there.

#3 Critical Thinking

The limitless opportunities offered by this curriculum is what draws one to it. this education will help you satisfy your interests, solve complex issues, bring out your creative side, and at the same time challenge you academically. It will lead you to apply concepts to real life problems, giving you an opportunity to hone your critical thinking. It provides in-depth knowledge about how to approach a certain situation.

#4 Inculcate Soft Skills

Many companies look for the soft skills that a liberal arts education provides. It gives you an edge in the process of job search. You learn about human behavior and understand why people do certain things. You even learn to interact with people in different settings, deal with issues in separate areas, and use that knowledge practically.

#5 Opportunity to Explore

Liberal arts will provide you with a plethora of options, which are not only interesting but also educational. It helps you develop a passion for learning, going beyond the professional space. The courses offered are very interesting and makes one want to try out different paths to attain personal fulfillment and end up with a degree you are passionate about.

About the Author: 

Lavanya Agarwal is a sophomore at the University of Virginia. She is planning to major either in Commerce or Economics with a minor in Psychology. At UVA, she is involved with Profit with Purpose, Student Council, Bharatiya Council, and Salsa Club. She loves to explore different places and travel. You can find her on LinkedIn.

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