Do you dream of writing a best-seller? Or being a legislator? Maybe you’d like to anchor the evening news, work in the fashion industry, or serve as a school administrator. Whether your dream is to be a diplomat or a pilot, Virginia Tech’s College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences can prepare you to realize it.

Hot specialties may come and go, but a broad education lasts a lifetime. It is important to master not only job skills, but also the intellectual skills a liberal arts education develops. The College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences encourages students to apply knowledge from one field to another and to think creatively. Our alumni are making their marks in the worlds of business, industry, entertainment, education, government, and research. You can join them. Explore your options in the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences.

High School Preparation & Admission to the College

A challenging college preparatory curriculum is your foundation for success in the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences (CLAHS). Specifically, you must present a minimum of 18 units, including four units of English, three of math (including algebra II and geometry), two units of social science (including history), and two units of lab science (chosen from biology, chemistry, or physics). Three additional college preparatory units are required, and the balance of the credits is your choice. CLAHS majors who have completed three years of the same foreign language in high school will meet the foreign language requirement for graduating from Virginia Tech. Some majors require that students complete additional college-level foreign language courses as a part of their major requirements. Students should keep in mind that these are just the minimum requirements. Additional college preparatory classes make students more competitive for admission to certain programs.

In addition to your high school transcript, SAT or ACT (plus writing) scores are required of freshman applicants.

Involvement in extracurricular activities related to a student’s field of interest also is beneficial.

Music majors, please be advised that an audition is required of prospective music students.

Curriculum & Opportunities

The College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences offers baccalaureate degrees encompassing the humanities, performing arts, and human and social sciences. Many of our programs allow students to choose both required and elective courses that support their career goals. Students are encouraged to explore the curriculum for their major and elective courses so that they allow themselves both a broad education and a depth of study that prepares them for the many careers possible with a major from the CLAHS.
In addition, we are committed to undergraduate research by providing students with opportunities to engage in research activities through the college’s Undergraduate Research Institute and the opportunity to publish their research through Philologia, the CLAHS undergraduate research journal.

A common emphasis throughout the CLAHS is student involvement in extracurricular activities. You’ll find numerous opportunities to develop your talents. For example, we have student-run radio and TV stations, an undergraduate research journal, associations, clubs, recitals, exhibits, student newspapers, magazines, and more. CLAHS also offers first-year programs to help you explore your major and the many opportunities available both on campus and around the world.

Faculty & Facilities

With 500 faculty members and more than 100 staff, the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences stands ready to assist undergraduates in their learning and discovery mission.

A superb corps of faculty that includes University Distinguished Professor and world-renowned poet Nikki Giovanni and five (half of the university total!) Alumni Distinguished Professors are among the dozens of annual award-winning teachers to offer students a multi-dimensional and diverse education.

The College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences’ outstanding facilities enhance the overall educational environment, including the new Center for the Arts, the most advanced digital music facilities on the East Coast, a flexible staging configuration theater, a complete television studio, a 5,000-piece historic costume collection, kitchen design center, child development center for learning and research, and a computer graphics laboratory. A complete list of facilities is available from each department.

Freshman Curriculum

Courses of study will vary. There are certain university core requirements all students must fulfill, usually during the first year. A typical first-year schedule would resemble the following example, with electives being determined by each student’s particular major.

First Semester Second Semester
English English
Math Math
Science Science
Department-specific requirement Department-specific requirement
Elective Elective