Master of Liberal Studies

Certificate of Advanced Graduate Study

The purpose of the Certificate of Advanced Graduate Study (CAGS) is to provide adults the opportunity to pursue advanced studies in the liberal arts in a focused and disciplined manner. The program encourages in-depth study of a core topic, while drawing upon various disciplines to provide a broad understanding of the subject. 

The Certificate program is an 18-hour course of study beyond the Master’s degree. With the guidance of a faculty mentor, students select a topic and design a program of study consisting of courses from the Master of Liberal Studies curriculum, departmentally based graduate courses, and independent study under the guidance of the faculty mentor.  A student’s course of study will conclude with a capstone project.  This certificate is not designed to be a professional or vocational credential, but rather to enrich the student’s knowledge and understanding of their chosen curricular field of study.

ACADEMIC REQUIREMENTS

The course of study detailed below must be completed within four years and students must maintain a 3.5 GPA throughout the program.

Application to this program will fulfill the following objectives:

  • clarify the expectations of the program

  • focus on a topic and select a faculty mentor

  • review writing and research methods

  • prepare an outline of the student’s plan of study

A core curriculum of 15 credit hours drawn from:

  • the MLS course offerings

  • a maximum of six credit hours in approved departmentally based graduate courses

  • three credit hours of independent study

A capstone seminar (three credit hours) in which students will complete and present their final papers, projects, or creative work.

ADMISSION

This program is designed primarily for MLS graduates who wish to pursue advanced graduate work.  Other applicants must have a Master’s degree in the arts/fine arts, humanities, or social sciences with a GPA of 3.5.  The completed Application for Admission must be accompanied by: 

►A 750-word proposal that identifies the student’s interest area, purposes for advanced study, previous study or background knowledge of the topic, and a tentative course of study.  This document will be used by the Dean to determine whether the student’s study proposal is appropriate for the program, and upon acceptance will be used as a working proposal for the introductory seminar. 

► Official transcripts from SMU’s Master of Liberal Studies or another graduate program.

►$75 nonrefundable application fee

APPLICATION