North Central College - Naperville, IL

North Central offering three new options for Master of Arts in Liberal Studies degree

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Richard Guzman
Richard Guzman

Feb. 8, 2012—North Central College is offering three new options in its Master of Arts in Liberal Studies (MALS) degree.

The College is incorporating three different programs to allow MALS students to pursue a specialty that suits their professional and personal interests.  The new program options are: Ethics and Public Service; Writing, Editing and Publishing; and Culture and Society. Visit to learn more.

“While maintaining much of its identity, including its interdisciplinary character, this restructuring of the Master of Arts in Liberal Studies program moves it toward a degree which is more focused on specific issues and professional interests,” says Richard Guzman, professor of English and coordinator of MALS. “We believe these changes will give the degree a greater focus, renew it academically and draw more students.”

The Ethics and Public Service program reinforces the College’s commitment to studies in ethics and a goal to produce principled, engaged citizens. The program combines ethics with knowledge about how to help the public understand the complex world of policy and choice. New and revised courses include The U.S. Healthcare System and Patient Advocacy, Environmental Economics, and Culture, Place and Policy. “Our program is unique in the area,” Guzman says. “It is not a master’s in public administration and therefore less technical in nature.”

The Writing, Editing and Publishing program combines professional and creative writing with editorial and management skills and prepares individuals to write, edit and publish in today’s wide-open writing environment. “We will stress diversity and proficiency across a wide range of writing styles and genres,” Guzman says. “While our program allows students to move in directions they want—whether toward professional writing, social change writing, poetry, fiction or creative nonfiction—it allows them to do so within a context of diversity and a concern for connection to the public. It also teaches them to see their work as possibly getting published in a wide range of formats, genres and writing/work situations.”

Courses include Professional and Grant Writing, the Social Consequences of New Media, Writing Life Stories, Writing Fictions and Finding Markets.

“This program is for teachers, technical and professional writers, editors, aspiring novelists, working journalists and freelancers, bloggers, devoted memoirists—anyone for whom writing is an integral part of their life stands to benefit from this one-of-a-kind program,” says Zachary Jack, associate professor English.

The third program, Culture and Society, mirrors the current MALS program degree requirements.
All three programs share a core curriculum composed of courses called Ethics in Contexts, Public Discourse and Leadership for Social Change.

All three share a commitment to the College’s core values of communicating with grace and precision; thinking critically, creatively, and ethically; combining knowledge from many disciplines to gain a more holistic view of crucial issues; and bringing social change that betters family, work and community.