Master of Arts in the Humanities Online

Program of Study | Course Descriptions | Policies | Using MyCSUDH

The HUX Master of Arts program is designed for self-motivated learners who wish to tailor an advanced study of the humanities according to their scholarly interests. No later than the end of the second trimester of coursework, students should select one thematic block from the options below and then plan all their coursework and research accordingly. Our expectations for students’ level of scholarship are the same for all thematic paths.

Please note that students, if they so desire, may take more courses than are required for their degree.  

Finally, as they near the end of their studies in their second year, students will complete a capstone project that helps them summarize what they have learned while applying their lessons to their professional and personal interests.

The block model is as simple as it is flexible: classes are organized into themed blocks, each of which includes four courses that explore the block’s theme from a variety of disciplinary and subject-matter approaches. Here’s how it works: students will need to complete one entire block of classes and two classes from a different block. Students may then choose one elective from any other block that they wish. In addition to the block-based courses, students will need to complete three required courses (a humanities and research overview class, a graduate writing class, and a capstone portfolio class) for a total of ten courses. 

Each block will not only offer a multifaceted look at a single themed subject from four different vantage points, but it will also include a complete package of vocational, writing, and other critical skills that will help you affect change in your institutions, in your communities, and in your lives. Those skills will in turn be applicable to students who are released and who soon find themselves on the job market. 

Perspectives on Punishment
This block of courses explores the historical, racial, class, and patriarchal origins of mass incarceration from a variety of disciplinary perspectives, including history, philosophy, and cultural studies.

Abolition and Liberation
This block of classes introduces, builds on, and adds to a growing body of academic work happening right now in anti-carceral studies, settler colonial studies, and women’s studies. With an emphasis on abolition, this block offers practical yet evidence-based approaches to students interested in pursuing a social justice agenda.

Religion, Morality, and Spirituality
This block of classes introduces students to a diverse array of religious and spiritual paradigms from across the world, while also tackling one of the central questions facing humanity in the twenty-first century: what place should religion take in this rapidly changing world? This course is currently comprised of six courses from the Legacy HUX program. Students must complete four of the six to finish the block.

Expanding Horizons
These courses are intended to introduce students to a wide variety of subjects and disciplinary approaches, and are intended to provide additional foundational perspectives and knowledge to broadly curious students. Unlike the other thematic blocks, the subjects for these courses are more open-ended. This allows instructors to experiment and focus on teaching different artistic and disciplinary forms, rather than specific topics. This course is currently comprised of six courses from the Legacy HUX program. Students must complete four of the six to finish the block.

Urban Development
This block of classes offers a multi-disciplinary approach to the social, cultural, historical, racial, ethnic, and gendered aspects of the modern city and its development.

Capstone Project
This course is designed to enable students to demonstrate the integration of knowledge from various fields in the humanities. In addition, the course “launches” students into the larger communities and offers them a deeper knowledge about the connection between systems of oppression, incarceration, and societal re-entry. This course is taken in the students’ second year. Prerequisite: advanced to candidacy.

Creating an Independent Study Course

How to construct an Independent Study. Students are welcome to take an Independent Study class to cover any topics that are not covered by the thematic blocks above.

Course Guide
Each correspondence course is accompanied by a student study guide or syllabi, called a "course guide," which is a specially prepared packet (produced by the M.A. Humanities Degree faculty and updated by the staff) to provide the framework for independent learning.

Assignments are usually presented in essay format; midterm and final "exams," if any, are also essay format, and do not require proctoring. The average course requires from 4 to 7 assignments, with an average assignment length of 5-10 pages. 

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