Liberal Arts Division

Dean: Jennifer Prewitt-Freilino

At RISD the exploration of both studio arts and liberal arts makes for a powerful experience. In fact, RISD stands out among art schools for its emphasis on liberal arts study, led by doctorate-level faculty in archeology, anthropology, biology, cognitive science, creative writing, literature, history, art history, performance studies, philosophy, psychology, religion, sociology and more.

The mission of the Liberal Arts division is threefold: to provide a strong general education, to offer possibilities for focused study, and to foster opportunities for deepening and enriching art and design practice. In Liberal Arts classes students learn to articulate ideas with independence and confidence; think creatively, critically and analytically; and develop a lifelong curiosity about the world.

Departments included in the Liberal Arts Division:

Theory & History of Art & Design
History, Philosophy + the Social Sciences (HPPS)
Literary Arts + Studies (LAS)

Liberal Arts Masters Programs:

Global Arts + Cultures
Nature-Culture-Sustainability Studies


Browse the Liberal Arts Division Collections:

A Guide to Liberal Arts

Contemporary Aesthetics (Journal Archive)

Global Arts + Cultures (GAC)

Nature-Culture-Sustainability Studies (NCSS)

Questioning Aesthetics

RISD Cabaret 1987-2000