Liberal Studies, B.S.

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Southern offers a B.S. degree in liberal studies for students who are also majoring in the B.S. Elementary Education or Early Childhood and programs. The liberal studies program provides these students with an interdisciplinary major, as per State certification regulations. The Liberal Studies program is particularly well suited to meet the unique professional needs of Elementary and Early Childhood level educators, as it provides them the opportunity to acquire the content knowledge necessary to teach across disciplines in prek-6 school settings. Students in these education majors will continue to have the option to select a single subject major, with the approval of the Curriculum and Learning Department.

The difference between this program and the B.S. degree in liberal arts is that it does not restrict students to a single major, but rather allows them to broaden their studies by selecting two concentrations/minors of 18 credits each and Math 105, a cognate from their education major. The B.S. Liberal Studies program is only available to students also majoring in one of these education programs. A student who withdraws from the education program, will also be withdrawn from the Liberal Studies program.

Students who elect to pursue one of the education programs (Elementary Education or Early Childhood program) will automatically enter into the LBS program, with pre-selected concentrations/minors from a list of approved concentrations/minors for their education major (see the education program catalog descriptions). Any changes to these concentrations/minors must be approved by the Department of Curriculum and Learning. Students in the Liberal Studies program must follow the Liberal Education Program category restrictions from their education major. Further, students may use up to three courses from the Liberal Education Tier 1 or 2 requirement within their Liberal Studies program.

Like all students at the University, liberal studies students must also satisfy the Liberal Education Requirements for the B.S. degree; liberal studies students will follow the Liberal Education course requirements for their respective education major. Students may use up to three courses that meet a Liberal Education Tier 1 or 2 requirement towards their either of the Liberal Studies program concentrations/minors. Further, they must complete at least the 120 credits required for a bachelor degree. At least 36 of these 120 credits must be in courses at the 300-level or higher. A 2.0 QPR is also required in each concentration/minor in order to graduate from the program.  Students are required to meet the QPR requirements of their education program.

Overall GPA of 2.0 is required.
120 Overall Credits Required


Liberal Education Program

Students must complete a comprehensive three-tiered Liberal Education Program (LEP). View all requirements of the tiers on the Liberal Education Program.  While the choice of courses that fulfill the requirements is generally left up to students, courses in the major and/or cognate may also satisfy LEP requirements, although the course credits are only counted once towards the 120 credits required for graduation.

Writing Requirements (“W-Courses”)

Three W-courses are required. These may not be taken until after a student has passed ENG 112 — Writing Arguments. W-courses may count toward LEP, major, or cognate requirements, as well as free electives. Course sections that meet this requirement are designated by section numbers ending in “W”.

Transfer students who enter with 60 to 89 credits are required to pass two W-courses, while transfer students who enter with 90 credits or more must pass one W-course.


39 Credits Required (up to 9 credits may also be counted towards LEP requirements)

  • MAT 105 - Mathematics for Elementary Education I
  • Two 18-credit concentrations/minors as recommended by the education major

B.S. Liberal Studies majors must also have a second major in one of the following: Early Childhood Education or Elementary Education. See the catalog description of each of the majors for details of the education major.  The following are the recommended Liberal Studies concentrations/minors for each of the education majors. Liberal Studies majors may also select from existing minors and IDS-concentrations, as approved for their education major by the Curriculum and Learning Department.

B.S. Liberal Studies for Elementary Education majors:

18 Credits Required

  • HIS 200 - Historical Methods and Material
  • Select one 300-level HIS course
  • Select 12 additional HIS credits, may not include more than two 100-level courses.

English: Language, Literature and Writing
18 Credits Required

  • ENG 307 - Literacy Analysis for English majors
  • ENG 309 - Rhetorical Strategies in Writing and Communication or ENG 200 - Intermediate Composition
  • ENG 312 - English Grammar Systems
  • ENG 372 - Young Adult Literature
  • Select one of the following two options (6 credits):
  • Any two 300-400 level ENG or LIT literature courses
  • Select one from: ENG 201, 202, 203 and one 300-400 level ENG or LIT literature course

B.S. Liberal Studies for Early Childhood majors: 

18 Credits Required
PSY 100 - Introduction to Psychology
Select an additional 15 credits in Psychology, with the following restrictions:

  • Any 200-level PSY courses, which require PSY 100
  • Any 300-level PSY courses (other than PSY 300, 303, 311, 313, 393), which require 3 credits in PSY at the 200-level and may have additional course prerequisites.
  • PSY 303, 311, 313, 383, 393, and all 400-level courses have prerequisites specific to Psychology majors and Psychological Science minors. Psychology minors need departmental permission to register for these courses. Permission requests will be considered on a case-by-case basis.  Please note: PSY 197, 300, 463, 467, 471, 472, 473, and 499 may not be used for the minor.

Child, Family, and Community Studies
18 Credits Required
TSL 315 - Foundation in Bilingual Education
REC 312 - Therapeutic Play
Select an additional 12 from the following electives in the concentration:

  • EDU 110 - Experiencing the Arts
  • EDU 305 - Beginning Readers                     
  • EDU 316 - Child Development for Educators
  • EDU 414 - Applications of Child Development
  • PCH 356 - Maternal and Child Health
  • PSY 210 - Infant and Child Development
  • PSY 318 - Emotional and Social Development
  • PSY 320 - Abnormal Child Psychology
  • PSY 370 - Educational Psychology
  • REC 202 - Materials and Methods Birth to Five
  • REC 307 - Disabilities in Society
  • REC 403 - Mediating Problems in Community Settings
  • SHE 203 - School Health
  • SOC 265 - Self and Society
  • SOC 320 - Sociology of the Children
  • SOC 322 - Sociology of the Family


No cognates are required for this program.


Remaining credits to reach Overall Credits Required (listed above).