About the College

Commencement at UMass Boston


  • The Fall 2017 semester kicks off on Tuesday, September 5th! We are very much looking forward to having all of our wonderful students and faculty back on campus!

The College of Liberal Arts offers students the opportunity to study a variety of fields in the Humanities, Social Sciences, and Fine Arts—from English to Economics, Africana Studies to Women’s Studies, Performing Arts to Psychology—as well as in interdisciplinary programs such as Asian Studies that span two or more fields of study. A liberal arts education helps develop the skills essential for a career or for graduate study: critical and creative thinking, written and oral communication, inquiry and analysis, intercultural knowledge and competence, skills for lifelong learning and the ability to adapt to new situations quickly.

College of Liberal Arts alumni have gone on to become physicians, writers, TV producers, architects, teachers, elected officials, CEOs, sculptors, police officers, and more.

More than 5,000 students—close to 50% of UMass Boston’s undergraduates—are currently working toward degrees in the 27 majors offered by the college’s 19 departments. At the graduate level, the College of Liberal Arts currently offers eight masters programs (in English, American studies, applied economics, applied linguistics, historical archaeology, history, Latin and classical humanities, and applied sociology), a master of fine arts in creative writing, a PhD in clinical psychology, a PhD in sociology, and a PhD in developmental and brain sciences.

Faculty in the college are strongly committed to teaching and to their students’ learning. Faculty members mentor students in honors work, independent study projects, and internships. Faculty in the college produce research at the cutting edge of their disciplines, as well as participate in 15 university research centers and institutes that bring research and creative achievements to the local community and global audiences.

A Statement from the College of Liberal Arts Faculty Senate*

The College of Liberal Arts at the University of Massachusetts Boston affirms its core values of diversity, social justice, creativity, empathy, and rigorous, open critical inquiry. We honor Massachusetts’s history of struggles against oppression and for the principles of inclusion, equality, and acceptance. We remain committed to the University of Massachusetts Boston’s pioneering urban mission to provide an excellent and accessible education to all and to respecting and protecting the wide range of students who comprise the most diverse student body in New England. We stand for justice and against misogyny, racism, Islamophobia, anti-Semitism, religious discrimination, xenophobia and discrimination against immigrants, ethnic chauvinism, homophobia, transphobia, ableism, the ongoing dispossession and subjugation of Indigenous peoples, the continuing disenfranchisement of the poor and underserved, and the destruction of our ecological and community environments.

We affirm the presence on campus of people from diverse backgrounds and continue to see our diversity as one of the greatest strengths of this institution. As such, we promise to protect and to help anyone targeted by hate speech and acts. We stand with the multitude of academic organizations in our shared commitment to academic freedom for all, unimpeded by acts of prejudice and hate. Free inquiry and inclusive dialogue require an environment in which all feel safe and welcome. We therefore encourage the expression of dissenting opinion while at the same time condemning all forms of prejudice and harassment that contribute to a climate of fear, suspicion, and exclusion in our community.

*Any omission of any underrepresented group or form of prejudice is unintentional; we welcome any revision requests at cla.senate@umb.edu.