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Master of Liberal Arts (MLA)

University of Richmond
Program overview
Master's degree
Scholarships available
Information sessions
Information sessions
Start dates


University of Richmond

About this program

Master of Liberal Arts (MLA)

Employers want to hire liberal arts graduates because they tend to be innovative and independent thinkers with strong communication and reasoning skills. As a graduate student in the liberal arts, you’ll build a valuable base of knowledge and experience to enhance your professional career and personal life.

Graduate study in the liberal arts requires an interdisciplinary focus. With each required and elective course, students apply principles from history, social sciences, literature, and other discipline-specific coursework toward solving a central focus question, developed in coordination with the program coordinator. Sample areas of inquiry include sustainable design, historical and cultural studies of gardening, and comic book design studies — areas related, directly or indirectly, to the professional experiences and aspirations of the students.

As an MLA student and graduate, you’ll be well-rounded, knowledgeable in many subjects and able to draw from that knowledge and experience to answer questions, take sides in a debate or solve a problem. And you’ll acquire an appreciation for global perspectives, traditions, lifestyles and philosophies.

Admission requirements

Students seeking admission to the Master of Liberal Arts must have the following (in addition to the admission requirements for all graduate programs):

  • A baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited U.S. college or university (or international equivalent)
  • A grade point average of 3.0 or higher on all college or university academic work attempted
  • A one-page statement of purpose which clarifies the student’s goals and gives a broad indication of the type of focus the student wishes to pursue.

English Proficiency

Applicants whose native language is not English, or whose collegiate level or secondary level instruction was not in English, must demonstrate English proficiency by examination prior to admission to and/or enrollment in the School. The University may require additional evaluation for language proficiency through testing or individual interviews for students with scores near the minimum score.

TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) requires a score of at least:

  • 550 on the paper-based test
  • 213 on the computer-based test
  • 80 on the internet-based test

IELTS (International English Language Testing System) requires a score of 6.5 on the test.

For more information about admission requirements, please visit the university website.

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Program content

Master of Liberal Arts

Required Core

  • Methods and Themes in Liberal Studies
  • Humanities Seminar
  • Social Sciences Seminar
  • Science Seminar
  • Seminar in Liberal Arts

Scholarships & funding

Several scholarship options are available. Please check the university website for more information.


The tuition fee for this program is $665 per semester hour.

Career paths

Career Paths in Liberal Arts

Business and management

  • Advance your career to a managerial or other leadership role in a business, corporation, government agency, or nonprofit organization.
  • Pursue a career in management, including consulting, procurement, marketing, e-business, international business, customer service, health care administration, and strategic planning.
  • Prepare for a career in business, publishing, or the nonprofit sector using the written communication and critical-thinking skills needed in today’s workplace.

Communications and writing

  • Prepare for a career in public relations, marketing, advertising, customer communications, technical writing, customer service, employee training, sales, or public information.
  • Prepare to work as a writer or communication specialist in business, government, or nonprofit organizations or in evolving new media outlets, including online newsletters, newspapers, and magazines.

Education and teaching

  • Pursue a career as an elementary or secondary school teacher, licensed in the state of Virginia.
  • Prepare to teach as a college-level instructor in a variety of settings.

Midcareer professional development

  • Develop analytical, organizational, and communication skills for advancement as a manager, writer, speaker, teacher, or information specialist in for-profit, nonprofit, and governmental organizations.
  • Prepare for increased managerial responsibility or midcareer professional development. Pursue a managerial career in for-profit, nonprofit, and governmental organizations with an emphasis on planning, innovation, and problem solving.

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About this institute

University of Richmond

Located ten kilometers from a vibrant capital city, the University of Richmond provides a collaborative learning and research environment unlike any other, offering 3,200 undergraduates from 70+ countries an extraordinary combination of the liberal arts and sciences with a top-ranked...

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Contact info

University of Richmond

410 Westhampton Way
23173 Richmond Virginia
United States of America

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