The Liberal Arts Environment seeks to enhance, enrich and expand the intellectual development of students at The Cleveland Institute of Art. Through the Bachelor of Fine Arts degree curriculum, our students develop their understanding of many cultures of our world-both past and present-and discover the importance of ideas to the growth of their creative lives.
In work at both the introductory and advanced levels, we believe it's important for you to engage in rigorous academic work in a number of fields. After completing Foundation-level Composition, Literature and Art History, you can choose from a variety of Liberal Arts electives such as film, anthropology, creative writing and multi-cultural studies.
Your Liberal Arts education at the Institute serves two main purposes. The first is skill-based. In your study of history, literature, anthropology and other academic subjects you will develop sophisticated reading skills, an enhanced vocabulary and a crucial proficiency in communicating ideas about cultural products, past and present. Through completing rigorous assignments in research papers and crafting analytical, argumentative essays, we make sure that our students become strong writers, able to convey their point of view while integrating diverse perspectives on the issue at hand.
The second purpose to the Liberal Arts curriculum is idea-based. In order to make art, the artist needs ideas, as well as the skills to express them. The Institute puts creativity at its center. We therefore structure our Liberal Arts curriculum around the notion of culture as a generator of creative ideas. Our students are makers themselves, not merely students of other creators. We have built our own Liberal Arts curriculum around this creative core, and the reading and writing we assign are crucial to the development of your own artistic ideas.
A singular feature of the Institute's Liberal Arts curriculum is how we meld the study of literature with that of art history. At the Institute, you will learn about ancient and medieval literature and culture while also taking a course in Ancient and Medieval History of Art. This parallel curriculum continues through Foundation-level study, culminating in concurrent courses in Contemporary Literature and Contemporary Art. This carefully calibrated educational experience provides you with a broad sense of the trajectory of world history itself. Each of our students graduates with a valuable, comprehensive framework upon which to build a unique set of lifelong learning endeavors.