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A Guide to Liberal Arts Degrees Abroad

“Give me liberty or give me death!” Did you know that the word liberal derives from liberty? It represents the freedom to think and reason from a vast array of knowledge and information types, from history to literature, philosophy to economics, and everything in between. If that’s the degree for you, there’s another liberty you should pursue: travel! Earning liberal arts degrees abroad not only provides you with an enriched education, but also satisfies your need for adventure. So, go get out there and be free!

Why Earn Liberal Arts Degrees Abroad

It’s one thing to watch documentaries about Shakespeare’s Globe Theater, flip through slides of paintings at the Louvre, and read textbook descriptions of different cultures around the world: it’s another thing to experience it! Imagine discussing philosophy and psychology on the same streets that Socrates walked down, or experiencing foreign economics and politics in your morning newspaper! Adventure is the best way to learn, so start your research for the best program and start your education.

Earning your degree at international liberal arts schools is especially valuable when you consider what you have studied and what you could study: culture. Every culture has a different history and outlook, so a degree abroad can give you a reading list of brand new books, diverse perspectives, and novel concepts. Adding an exotic spice to your degree (and no, ordering an Italian roast at your favorite cafe does not count) will enhance your studies, fuel your passion, and open up doors for travel, education, and careers.

Not only will your studies be improved by adding some suitcases to your school supplies, but your prospective career options afterwards as well! International experience never looks bad, and often gives you a leg up on the competition when it comes to resumes and interviews. Earning liberal arts degrees abroad also opens several doors for networking and opportunity, as the world is your playground. If you add a new language along the way, this advantage grows even higher!

Locations

Liberal arts is a diverse area of study, so it’s no wonder that there is an almost unending list of places to study in. Each location offers something special, so it’s important to consider what you’re interested in and where will be the best fit for you. There are no bad options, only better ones!

If the Norman conquest, da Vinci’s Mona Lisa, and hellenistic philosophy has you swooning like Julius Caesar in Act I Scene II, look to western Europe for your university. Italy, England, and France are leaders in classical studies, with their histories rich in literature, history, and politics. Trips to museums, cathedrals, and other historic sights bring class lectures to life. Then there’s also the many Classic Tourist Photo opps: trying to hold up the Leaning Tower of Pisa, poking around Stonehenge, or slurping down a plate of escargots (nothing to be ashamed of here!). Germany and Switzerland provide similar classic studies, with their unique twists and a healthy dose of snow-sprinkled gingerbread.

For some liberal fun outside of the European continent, Buenos Aires provides a splendid background for anthropology focuses, especially when complemented with weekend getaways to pyramid temples and Spanish readings of local authors. There’s also tango and yerba mate to help with cultural studies, so don’t shy away from the immersion.

There’s more to liberal arts than Aristotle and Shakespeare though, so don’t discount programs in places like Thailand. Haikus or tribal rituals might be more your flavor, which garners a look into Asia for programs that extend beyond western focuses. If your interests lean more towards anthropology, ethnic studies, and global communication, grab your backpack and head into the minority jungles for an adventure of a lifetime.

Liberal Arts Degree Programs

Academic foci and liberal arts degrees vary from place to place, so it’s important to identify your needs and find the right program for your interests. Whether your heart beats to history studies or philosophical musings, it’s good to see what you’d like to focus on, and then dive in.

At the undergraduate level, an international liberal arts degree is broad and varied. It typically requires a variety of courses and study focuses, from language to literature and politics to anthropology. Master and doctoral degrees tend to require a specialization within the college of liberal arts, such as Chinese literature or African anthropology, although it’s still possible to achieve as a more general topic at a higher level.

Before earning your international liberal arts degree, it’s important to identify the culture, style, and information focus of your university destination. Liberal arts encompasses a variety of topics: sociology, the sciences, mathematics, literature, and more. Depending on your focus, you may need to do additional studies outside the classroom, such as an internship for political science or a recital for music and dance. 

Starting at liberal arts schools, even abroad, is relatively easy, as it generally requires only a degree for the level below whatever you are seeking (high school for undergraduate for master’s and so on). Unless you are looking into earning a degree in a country that speaks a language different from your native language, there are no additional requirements or qualifications for a liberal arts degree (and even the language requirement isn’t set in stone). As long as you have a passion for the field, it will be no time at all before you’re dancing across the graduation stage like a Monet ballerina!

Benefits and Challenges

Novelty. By going abroad, you’re opening your scope to a range of new insights and materials. This will greatly increase your knowledge and widen your perspective, but it can be initially difficult as you may have to play catch-up in comparison to locals that are more used to the subject area: your secondary education of To Kill a Mockingbird may or may not line up to the original Don Quixote. Take this in stride, seek help where you need it, and offer your own background perspectives to gain a broader education than anyone else around you!

Connections. Surrounding yourself with the material you’re studying will invariably make everything stick and connect at a deeper level than being at home, which is very valuable to a liberal arts degree. On top of that, the friends, professors, advisors, and more that you will meet and make along the way are what makes the experience truly memorable. With all those people, you’re likely to learn as much during your coffee breaks with classmates as you will during class lectures!

Earning degrees in liberal arts abroad gives you a step above the competition, as well as some amazing travel stories and a deeper understanding of your degree. As you gather your many books and reading materials for your studies, also consider St. Augustine’s perspective that “The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.” Reach out beyond the known and go abroad for your degree!

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Liberal Arts Degrees Abroad

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John Cabot University

A gap year is an incredible opportunity to experience the world, learn a new language, make international friends, and learn about yourself before starting college. John Cabot University in Rome, Italy not only provides an invaluable gap year experience, but also allows you to earn transferrable college credits that will allow you to stay on track for graduation. As an American university in...

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Certificate in Middle Eastern Studies at AUD

Through the Certificate in Middle Eastern Studies program at The American University in Dubai (AUD) students will develop an understanding of the environment, cultural, politics, and history of the Middle East. This understanding will serve any students well whether they are seeking employment within the Middle East (regardless of their profession) or have a strong interest in the region. P...

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TEAN: Undergraduate and Graduate Degrees in Australia & NZ

For those wanting to study abroad beyond a semester, TEAN can assist you in finding a program in Australia or New Zealand to earn your Bachelor's degree, Master's degree, or PhD. Our services are free to you. We do not charge you for the work we do on your behalf. By utilizing TEAN's services you are saving money on international postage, phone calls and more. We help with: - Selecting your...

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Mente Argentina: Master's and Graduate Degrees Program in Buenos Aires

Mente Argentina's Masters and Graduate Degrees Program may be the perfect program for someone interested in studying in a new culture. Through this international program students will gain the knowledge and skills necessary to succeed in thier career. Individuals can chose to study from some of the most renowned universities in the Country: Universidad de Buenos Aires (UBA), Universidad Argen...

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Study Abroad at Bangor University in Wales, UK

Many students choose to study at Bangor University, North Wales as visiting study abroad scheme students. Every year, well over 100 students from North, Central and South America, Asia and mainland Europe undertake a semester or a whole year at Bangor and transfer the credits achieved to the home University. This means that students who are taking a degree course at another university can vi...

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Study for Your Bachelor's Degree in Central London

Richmond, The American International University in London offers the traditional American Liberal Arts education, renowned for its flexibility and broad-based core and specialized curriculum. Richmond's 2015-2016 National Student Survey Overall Satisfaction Score is 85%, with a number of courses rated between 86%-93%. Its Graduate Employability Rate is 92%, what with students gaining both a...

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International Master's Degree Programs in Helsinki, Finland

Broaden your academic knowledge further with a graduate study in Finland! Enroll in any of the University of Helsinki’s 33 Masters Programmes, which are taught entirely in English. Complete your full-time study in two years and earn 120 ECTS credits. Our annual tuition fees are 13.000, 15.000 or 18.000 €, depending on the program. The International Master's Degree Programs at the University ...

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Saint Louis University-Madrid Campus

Saint Louis University is a Jesuit institution with campuses in St. Louis, Missouri and Madrid, Spain. The student body on the Madrid campus is a multicultural community of approximately 750 students from over 60 different countries. Students at SLU-Madrid can complete a fully accredited American degree abroad in Business, Communication, International Relations, Psychology and more. SLU-Madrid ...

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Degree Programmes at Brunel University

Brunel is a campus-based university situated in Uxbridge, West London, and is home to nearly 15,000 students from over 100 countries worldwide. Founded in 1966, our distinctive mission is to combine teaching and research excellence with the practical and entrepreneurial approach pioneered by its namesake, Isambard Kingdom Brunel. The University is based around eight Academic Schools: *...

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Middlesex University, London UK

At Middlesex, no matter where in the world our students come from, we give them the tools and opportunities they need to make their own path to success, to grow as individuals and to stand out from their peers back at home. We offer a broad range of industry relevant courses and our academics draw on their experience and employ practical teaching techniques. We provide our students with the op...

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King's College London

We invite you to join the 27,000 students from nearly 150 countries who have chosen to study at one of the UK’s most historic and prestigious universities! Students from around the world choose King’s to further their academic and professional studies. With over 90% of our research internationally recognized, you benefit from an intellectually rigorous environment supported by welcoming and car...

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Across the Pond

Whether you want to study undergraduate and graduate degree programs or shorter-term semester and year-long programs, Across The Pond can help. For over 10 years we have been helping students from the USA, Canada, Latin America and Norway to find and apply to over 40 of the top colleges and graduate schools in England and the rest of the UK. Our team of UK Study Experts, who have had first-h...

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Study Abroad in London at the University of Roehampton

The University of Roehampton offers students the opportunity to live and learn on a close-knit collegiate campus just a stone's throw away from the sights and sounds of the capital city. Students can really experience the 'best of both worlds' at London’s only parkland campus. You will study for one semester or a full year alongside Roehampton students from over 130 countries worldwide. Guar...

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University of Otago - Study Abroad

The University of Otago welcomes study abroad students from universities throughout the world, and enrolls international students in degrees from bachelors through to PhD. Live among local students of the university, all within 15 minutes walk of campus and the Dunedin city center in New Zealand. The two to six-bedroom houses or apartments typically have at least one local student living in the...

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Accademia dell'Arte - Study Abroad in Arezzo, Tuscany, Italy

The Accademia dell'Arte is a performing arts school and cultural center. Housed at Villa Godiola, a Renaissance era villa that overlooks the city of Arezoo, the Accademia dell’Arte offers study abroad programs in: - Physical Theatre - Dance - Music - Summer Intensive Programs: Physical Theatre and Dance - Interdisciplinary Summer Programs We also host faculty-led study abroad progra...