Continued from page 1
Ability to find patterns in data, make inferences, and create algorithmic solutions. Many higher-level problem-solving classes stress this skill. --Relevant classes: An introductory linguistics class will give you lots of practice in pattern analysis.
Basic mathematical, algebraic, and statistical skills. From personal money management to polls to health articles to gambling, you need these basic numerical skills to understand many aspects of adult life. --Relevant classes: Take classes in mathematics, algebra, and statistics.
Basic acquaintance with history, philosophy, literature, and art. This is quintessential knowledge of a person well-educated in liberal arts. A basic comprehensive knowledge of these subjects will enable you to converse with kings. --Relevant classes: Take history, philosophy, literature, music appreciation, and art history classes.
Basic acquaintance with life and physical sciences. A well-educated person in today's technologically-advanced society has a basic understanding of sciences, human body, and physical environment. --Relevant classes: Take physical science (chemistry and physics) classes and an anatomy class as well as life, earth, or space science classes.
Basic knowledge of American governance, political philosophy, and economy. As American citizens, we are part of a participatory democracy and a powerful capitalist economic system. To keep our country strong, we must be well-educated in American history and politics. We should also understand how our economic system works. --Relevant classes: Take classes in American History, American political system, and economics.
Basic understanding of human diversity. We live in a troubled, hostile world, where many people find it hard to tolerate and understand each other's differences. The undergraduate experience allows you to counteract this tendency by exposing yourself to various cultures, languages, and lifestyles. A liberal arts education should teach that underneath our many differences, we share all of same basic needs. -- Relevant classes: Human beings are diverse in a multitude of ways, so there is a wide variety of classes that explore these differences. Take classes in anthropology, sociology, abnormal psychology, linguistics, foreign languages, and history (other than American or European history). There are also many classes that explore cultural differences in ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion, and other demographic groups.
Andrea Jussim is an experienced writer with experience in teaching and research. She entered a prestigious 5-year Ph.D. program immediately after completing her undergraduate studies, but left with an M.A. and her sanity two years later.