June 19, 2018, by Ross Wilson
Making choices in Liberal Arts
A fundamental part of studying Liberal Arts at the University of Nottingham is being able to choose modules across a range of disciplines. Alongside the core Liberal Arts modules which develop interdisciplinary thinking and focus on applied knowledge to address global issues, you can select modules that allow you to access ideas from subjects such as history, sociology, psychology, sociology or geography. With over fifteen different subject areas represented within the Liberal Arts programme, we work with you to make sure that this choice works for each individual. Optional modules are selected to reflect your interests, your research or your career objectives. Every Liberal Arts degree will be unique to each individual but every route will be based on what that individual wants to achieve.
You can choose optional modules on the basis of interest or enquiry. For many people, being able to follow the subjects that have been studied previously but at a higher level enables a richer assessment of the topic. You might want to continue being able to examine the history of the Cold War and explore it from an international perspective. Or, you might want to be able to further your knowledge of a particular literary genre or psychological theory. You can carry on pursuing the areas that you’re motivated by within Liberal Arts. You can also explore and take modules that suddenly spark your interest. Whether that’s in philosophy, classics, archaeology or politics, the Liberal Arts programme enables you to find something new and exciting. Taking modules out of personal interest supports your learning and deepens your knowledge of a particular area.
During your time at university you will start to develop areas of research. You may begin to be fascinated by issues of equality, democracy, business, innovation or representation. This could lead into an interest in the environment, enterprise or human rights and justice. Within Liberal Arts, you can take modules that reflect these emerging interests. Your module choices allow you to concentrate and specialise as well as being flexible. You could begin to have an interest in environmental issues and take modules that explore these issues from philosophy, politics and sociology. Liberal Arts provides you with an opportunity to develop your own areas of research and to further your work with new ideas and concepts. During your research for your dissertation, you may decide that your work would benefit from ideas and methods from psychology or history, you can then select these modules to support your work. Taking modules to pursue research interests provides you with new ideas and enriches your perspective.
Whether it’s the first year or the final semester of the third year, you will be able to select modules on the basis of a future career. Working with your personal tutor and the Careers and Employability Service, you can choose a module because of a skillset, methodology or for the insight it brings to enable you to prepare for a particular area of employment. You could select modules in English to work towards a career in journalism. You could take modules within sociology and politics to help gain insight into your chosen career as a lawyer. You can also take modules across a range of languages, humanities and social sciences to support your future postgraduate work. Your choices within Liberal Arts allows you to build a profile to help you shape the career you want.