The College of Arts and Sciences is UNCW’s largest academic unit, employing 450 full-time and 150 part-time faculty members and awarding approximately three quarters of the university’s academic credits. Ours is a comprehensive arts & sciences college comprising the arts, the humanities, the mathematical and natural sciences, and the social and behavioral sciences.
UNCW's other academic units include three professional schools (the Cameron School of Business, the College of Health and Human Services, and the Watson School of Education), and the Graduate School. The University College provides academic advising to UNCW undergraduates from the time of their admission until they declare their major, usually in the sophomore year.
Undergraduate Programs in the College of Arts and Sciences
The College’s twenty-two departments offer a variety of undergraduate majors leading to the Bachelor of Arts, the Bachelor of Fine Arts, the Bachelor of Music, and the Bachelor of Science. The College also offers a full complement of minors, including interdisciplinary minors such as African-American studies, Asian studies, forensic science, Latin American studies, Native American studies, and women's studies, among others.
Many special undergraduate offerings are available, including the following:
- A Two-Plus-Two Engineering Program offered jointly by UNCW and North Carolina's four state-supported colleges of engineering
- A Three-Plus-Two program in physics and electrical engineering leading to degrees from both UNCW and North Carolina State University
- A Three-Plus-Two program in environmental science and environmental engineering leading to degrees from both UNCW and North Carolina State University
- Pre-professional programs in chiropractic, dentistry, medicine, optometry, pharmacy, physical therapy, podiatry, veterinary medicine and pre-law
- Certificates in professional writing and geographic information science
Applied learning is a hallmark of the student experience in the College of Arts and Sciences. Each of the College’s departments requires an applied learning experience as a part of the curriculum for its undergraduate majors. Examples include faculty-directed research, internships, service learning, and capstone courses and projects, all of which challenge students to integrate various stands of knowledge and to apply that knowledge to broader, real-world or real disciplinary situations. Through applied learning, students in the college gain direct hands-on experience with the skills of their major fields as an essential part of their preparation for life and career. For more information, please visit the College's Applied Learning web page.
In addition to its undergraduate major and minor programs, the College is chiefly responsible for the curriculum that comprises the university’s Basic Studies Program, through which all UNCW undergraduates gain a foundation in the liberal arts and develop the transferable skills essential for life in the twenty-first century.
The College strives in its undergraduate programs and in its Basic Studies offerings to nurture creative thinking, intellectual curiosity, and academic integrity in students while providing them with a solid foundation of knowledge in their chosen fields. Upon completion of their undergraduate studies, College of Arts and Sciences students will have the necessary preparation for rewarding careers, advanced study, effective citizenship, and meaningful lives.
Graduate Programs in the College of Arts and Sciences
Many of the College’s departments also offer graduate programs. Graduate degrees awarded include the Master of Arts, the Master of Fine Arts, the Master of Public Administration, the Master of Science, and the Doctor of Philosophy in marine biology. In addition, the Graduate Liberal Studies program offers a personalized curriculum of interdisciplinary study leading to the Master of Arts in liberal studies. The College also collaborates with the Watson School of Education to offer the Master of Arts in Teaching degree, and offers the Master of Science in computer science and information systems in cooperation with the Cameron School of Business. Post-baccalaureate certificates in applied statistics, environmental studies, and Hispanic studies are available.
Graduate programs in the college are designed to develop intellectual competence and to prepare the student for careers in business, industry, government, teaching, or for further study at the doctoral level.
For more complete descriptions of academic programs offered by the College of Arts and Sciences, please visit the College's departmental websites. For specific degree requirements, consult the university’s Undergraduate and Graduate Catalogues.