Our Mission

The College of Liberal Arts encourages the creation, development, dissemination, and application of human knowledge in the arts, humanities, and social sciences by promoting innovative teaching, scholarship, and research, thus providing a comprehensive education for all RIT students.

We strive to prepare students for a lifetime of personal growth and responsible citizenship in an increasingly technological and rapidly changing society by maintaining and promoting the intellectual climate on campus, contributing to students’ awareness and understanding of diversity, and enhancing students’ abilities to reason critically and communicate effectively.

We value a rigorous liberal arts education that encourages innovative experiential learning and active scholarship, the highest ethical standards, the educational and social benefits of diversity and global awareness, an interdisciplinary and collaborative environment of openness and academic freedom, a working environment in which all staff and faculty enjoy respect and recognition, and the active and meaningful participation of all members of the College community.

View our degree programs

View objectives and student learning outcomes by program

By the Numbers

Student Body
Undergraduate 554
Graduate 72
Male 225
Female 385
Full-time Faculty 170
Adjunct Faculty 130
Staff 26
Degrees Offered
Bachelor of Science 15
Advanced Certificates 1
Master of Science 5

Key Facts

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Honors societies

College of Liberal Arts sponsored honor societies:

• Lambda Pi Eta (Communication)
• Omicron Delta Epsilon (Economics)
• Psi Chi (Psychology)
• Sigma Iota Rho (International Studies)
• Pre-Law Honor Society

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Sponsored clubs

The College of Liberal Arts sponsors clubs that range from a Pep Band that plays at hockey games to Signatures Magazine, an award-winning art and literary publication. College-sponsored clubs are open to any RIT student, regardless of major.

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In sponsored research

Students are able to collaborate with faculty on research projects with roles ranging from research assistant to co-author

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Accelerated Degrees

Earn both a BS and an MS in a combined accelerated plan. Liberal Arts options: 
• Advertising and PR BS + Communication MS
• Communication BS + Communication MS
• Criminal Justice BS + Criminal Justice MS
• Economics BS + Science, Tech, and Public Policy MS or + Sustainable Systems MS
• History BS + Sustainable Systems MS
• Journalism BS + Communication MS
• Philosophy BS + Sustainable Systems MS
• Political Science BS + Sustainable Systems MS
• Sociology and Anthropology BS + Communication MS or + Hospitality Business Management MS or + Science, Tech, and Public Policy MS or + Sustainable Systems MS
• Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies BS + Sustainable Systems MS

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Minor options

A minor is an upper-level five-course sequence in a subject or topic outside of the primary major which allows students to gain a secondary area of expertise. Completed minors are recognized on student transcripts.

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Immersion options

An immersion is a three-course sequence in a subject or topic outside of the primary major meant to help students develop a well-rounded skill set or explore an area of interest. The College of Liberal Arts provides the most immersion options on campus.

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Study abroad programs

Students are encouraged to study abroad at one of RIT’s international campuses, on a faculty-led trip, or through an affiliate program. Options span more than 60 countries and offer credit-bearing courses. All College of Liberal Arts degree programs can accommodate an international experience.

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Double major

Most programs in the College of Liberal Arts can be paired to create a double major without extra time-to-graduation.

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