College of Arts and Humanities


Master of Arts


Lorna Fitzsimmons, Program Coordinator

Dana Belu, Adam Berg, Bill DeLuca, Bryan Feuer, Munashe Furusa, Pat Gamon, Tom Giannotti, Benito Gomez, Jonathon Grasse, Jim Jeffers, Pat Kalayjian, Richard Kravchak, Donald Lewis, Lynne Loeb, Jose Lopez Morin, Emily Magruder, Scott Morris, Rodney Oakes, Joanne Zitelli

Program Office: LCH A-338, (310) 243-3636

Program Description


All students at CSU Dominguez Hills are required to take the HUM 200 lower division course, a ground level introduction to ideas, concepts and a good number of works of art, literature, music and philosophy drawn from the Renaissance and Modern (including the Harlem Renaissance) periods of history. This is not a survey course, but rather a concentrated examination of two important periods in human history. Written works, art works and musical examples will be used to broaden the student's perception, and also to trace the course's main theme of tradition and change.

To continue the student's experience in the humanities beyond the lower division HUM 200 course, the General Education requirements for bachelor's candidates include one additional course selected from the HUM 310, HUM 312, and HUM 314 sequence. These courses, concerned with key concepts, movements and issues, focus on one particular theme in contrast to the broadly-based HUM 200 course.


The Humanities Graduate Program provides post-baccalaureate students the opportunity to study the traditional humanities fields--philosophy, literature, history, music, and art--in the context of contemporary interdisciplinary topics, as well as in courses devoted to the methodology and current concerns of specific disciplines. Courses enable the critical evaluation of the visual and performing arts, as well as the ideas, cultures and individuals which have shaped our society. Program courses are designed around the theme of the city. Skills in advanced writing, research, and presentation are exercised in seminars and in a final research or creative project.

Designed for professionals such as teachers for whom the possession of a master's degree has practical as well as personal value, the program also serves the student who is continuing his/her college education for the enrichment of lifelong learning.

Minor Program

Humanities minor students study contemporary and historical topics in literature, philosophy, history, performance and the visual arts in world civilizations and cultures. Each course emphasizes a single topic from the perspective of two or more Humanities disciplines, focusing upon primary sources, and significant works of art and literature, as well as ideas, movements and individuals, that have helped to define values, civilizations, and the human condition. Skills in writing, critical analysis, oral participation, and evaluation of the arts are fostered through course work.

The minor program provides balance to a major or applied field such as management or the sciences, and it extends a liberal arts major, providing the opportunity to refine the skills demanded in professional or graduate schools, as well as offering the benefits of academic and personal enrichment.

Academic Advisement


Students should see the Program Coordinator for advisement in the Humanities Office.

All students are urged to see an advisor upon admission to the University, and further, upon completion of 60 semester units, and during the first semester of the senior year.


Students must see the Humanities Program Coordinator. Once in the program, students are requested to stay in close touch with their advisor for course selection and choosing a topic for the Thesis or Final Project.



High school students are urged to take as many courses as they can in the areas covered by the humanities: art, literature, music, philosophy, and history. Personal experiences, such as performing in a high school band, orchestra or chorus, or taking part in a theatrical production, or being in a poetry reading and writing group, will also be valuable preparation for college work.

Community college transfers are encouraged to participate in some of the many high level activities in the arts and humanities provided at California Community Colleges.


For students preparing to enter the Master of Arts in Arts and Humanities Program some prior experience with courses or individual study in the areas of art, music, literature, history, and philosophy is required. Foreign languages also provide valuable preparation for this program.

Minor in Humanities (12 units)

A.  Required Courses (3 units):

HUM 490. Seminar in the Humanities (3)

NOTE: If HUM 490 is not offered, one of the following courses may be substituted with the permission of the Humanities Coordinator AND the course instructor: one other HUM 310/312/314, ART 490, ENG 490, HIS 490, MUS 495, PHI 490, THE 490, or any HUM 500 level course (except HUM 598 or HUM 599).


B.  Select nine units from the following using at least two different courses:

HUM 310. Key Concepts (3) (repeatable with different topics)

HUM 312. Key Movements (3) (repeatable with different topics)

HUM 314. Key Issues (3) (repeatable with different topics)

NOTE: An additional three units selected from HUM 310, HUM 312, or HUM 314 must be completed to fulfill the upper division General Education requirement in Integrative Studies in Humanities.

Master of Arts in Arts and Humanities (30 units)

Admission Requirements

  1. To be admitted into the program a student must possess a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college, as well as a grade point average of 3.0 or better in the last 60 semester units (90 quarter units) of upper division course work attempted (not including extension units).
  2. A Supplemental Application, available from the Humanities Office, must be completed.
  3. Although there are no specific course prerequisites for admission to the program, a student will be required to take undergraduate preparatory courses if the educational background in the humanities is insufficient.
  4. A letter of recommendation will be required.

Progress Towards The Degree

After nine units of graduate humanities courses are taken (500 level) with a grade average of "B" or better, and the Diagnostic essay Exercise has been passed, the student is given classified standing. After all requirements for the degree except the thesis/final project have been met, the student is given the status of advancement to candidacy. The degree is awarded after all requirements have been met, a grade point average of 3.0 or better has been maintained, and the final project/thesis has been completed and approved by the thesis committee and the Graduate Studies Office.


This program provides the opportunity to study humanities topics in depth at an advanced level. Each course meets one evening per week, and is conducted in a seminar setting with active student participation and discussion. Although the emphasis is upon combining the disciplines around topics, there is an opportunity to focus upon a single discipline seminar, electives, independent study, and the final project or thesis.

Degree Requirements (30 units)

A.  Core Courses (12 units):

HUM 500. Proseminar: The Humanities in the City (3)

HUM 512. Texts and Language (3)

HUM 528. Images and Artifacts (3)

HUM 582. Performance and Criticism (3)


B.  Theme Seminars (12-15 units):

HUM 520. Seminar in Art (3)

HUM 522. Seminar in Literature (3)

HUM 523. Seminar in Music (3)

HUM 524. Seminar in Philosophy (3)

HUM 535. Seminar in Film (3)

HUM 540. Seminar in History (3)


C. Electives (3 units):

Approved humanities-related courses chosen in consultation with an advisor.


D. Final Project or Comprehensive Examination (3 units):

HUM 598. Comprehensive Examination or

HUM 599. Final Project/Thesis


E.  Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement (GWAR). All graduates must pass the Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement. A score of eight or better is required on the GWE test, or in cases where English 350 is taken, a grade of "B" or better is required. Details on the examination are available from the English department office and the Testing Office. The GWAR must be taken in the first semester.


F.  Diagnostic Essay Exercise.  All graduate students must take the program's Diagnostic Essay Exercise, a diagnostic test to assess their writing and critical thinking skills, in the first semester of their graduate program, so that, if necessary, means of rectifying deficiencies may be prescribed.  A year later, students will "revisit" their Diagnostic Essay, critically engaging it to demonstrate development of skills.

Course Offerings

The credit value for each course in semester units is indicated for each term by a number in parentheses following the title. For course availability, please see the list of tentative course offerings in the current Class Schedule.

Lower Division

HUM 200         Introduction to the Humanities (3).

Prerequisite: One semester of ENG 111 or six units of IDS 107 or equivalent.

Examines the interrelationships among the humanities (art, literature, music, and philosophy) in Western culture by studying the theme of tradition and change in two periods, the Renaissance and the 20th Century (including the Harlem Renaissance).

Upper Division

HUM 310         Key Concepts (3).

Prerequisite: HUM 200 or equivalent.

Analysis of a major concept in humanistic thought and expression, e.g. the individual and society, success and values in the U.S., death and dying, war and society, global popular music, etc. Repeatable with different topics for credit.

HUM 312         Key Movements (3).

Prerequisite: HUM 200 or equivalent.

Analysis of a major historical movement from a humanistic perspective, e.g. Harlem Renaissance, Modernism, the Jazz Age, African Literature and Culture, Medieval Japan and Europe, etc. Repeatable with different topics for credit.

HUM 314         Key Issues (3).

Prerequisite: HUM 200 or equivalent.

Analysis of major contemporary issues from a humanities perspective. Examples include the role of the arts in society, literature and the rights of women, romantic love, visions of Los Angeles, etc. Repeatable with different topics for credit.

HUM 490         Seminar in Humanities (3).

Prerequisites: Completion of 9 units selected from 300 and 400 level Humanities courses.

A multidisciplinary synthesis emphasizing cultural, historical, or aesthetic-perceptual insights in the humanities. Topics vary. Three hours of seminar per week.


Graduate standing or consent of the graduate program coordinator is prerequisite to enrollment in graduate (500 level) courses.

HUM 500         Proseminar: The Humanities in the City (3).

An introduction to graduate level study in the humanities using the theme of "the humanities in the city." Three hours of seminar per week.

HUM 512         Texts and Language (3).

Examination of contemporary issues addressing what we read, how we read, and why we read. Examples from literature and philosophy. Includes the refining of skills in research and writing. Three hours of seminar per week.

HUM 520         Seminar in Art (3).

Prerequisites: Courses in art history and appreciation are recommended.

An in-depth study of such subjects as a single artist, a period, or a movement or theme in art history. Student should have a sufficient background in art vocabulary and concepts to participate. Three hours of seminar per week.

HUM 522         Seminar in Literature (3).

Prerequisites: Courses in literary interpretation and history are recommended.

Advanced work in a variety of topics in literature; assumes a working knowledge of the basic concepts and vocabulary of the discipline. Three hours of seminar per week.

HUM 523         Seminar in Music (3).

Prerequisites: Courses in music history, theory, and appreciation are recommended.

Advanced work in a variety of topics including study of a period, a cluster of composers, a movement, or music of a single country. Three hours of seminar per week.

HUM 524         Seminar in Philosophy/Religious Studies (3).

Prerequisites: Previous courses in philosophy are recommended.

Offers advanced work in a variety of topics such as the work of individual philosophers, or specific problems of epistemology or metaphysics. Assumes working knowledge of the basic vocabulary and concepts of the discipline. Three hours of seminar per week.

HUM 528         Images and Artifacts (3).

Examination of art, artifacts, architecture, murals, masks and other objects that are carriers of social, cultural, and aesthetic values. Three hours of seminar per week.

HUM 535         Seminar in Film (3).

Prerequisites: Courses in film history and appreciation are recommended.

Advanced work in a variety of topics in fim studies; assumes a working knowledge of the basic concepts and vocabulary of the discipline.

HUM 540         Seminar in History (3).

Prerequisites: Previous courses in history are recommended.

The study of a period or theme in history through the lens of the humanities. Assumes a working knowledge of the basic concepts and vocabulary of the discipline. Three hours of seminar per week.

HUM 582         Performance and Criticism (3).

A systematic examination of the theory, practice, and aesthetics of formal and informal criticism applied to performances in music, theatre, dance, and art films.

HUM 594         Independent Study (3).

Prerequisites: Previous courses in the humanities are required.

A special project involving research or creative work. Also extensive reading in consultation with a faculty member. Repeatable course.

HUM 595         Special Topics in Humanities (3).

An intensive study of selected issues in the arts and humanities. Three hours of seminar per week.

HUM 598         Comprehensive Examination (3).

Prerequisite: Advancement to candidacy and consent of program coordinator.

Comprehensive examination over coursework and set texts.  The degree candidate taking the exam must have either completed all coursework or be planning to complete it the semester the exam is taken.  Preparatory Session required.

HUM 599         Final Project (3).

Prerequisites: Advancement to candidacy and consent of program coordinator.

Thesis or creative project related to the student's particular combination of humanities studies. If creative project, extensive prior preparation required.

HUM 600         Graduate Continuation Course (0).

Graduate students who have completed their course work but not their thesis, project, or comprehensive examination, or who have other requirements remaining for the completion of their degree, must maintain continuous attendance by enrolling in this course. Signature of graduate program coordinator required.

Infrequently Offered Courses

The following courses are scheduled on a "demand" basis. Students should consult the department office for information about the next schedule offering.

HUM 212         Introduction to African American Culture (3).

Prerequisite: ENG 110.

Exploration of the fusion of African and American cultures in the development of the African American culture, with particular emphasis on music, dance, oral literature, language, drama and art.