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Online applied humanities degree provides professional skills in an affordable manner

Oregon State bachelor’s program offers a clear pathway to degree completion

Driven to help adult learners with some college experience finish their degrees online in an affordable manner while enhancing professional skills, Oregon State University offers an applied humanities bachelor’s program that features career-focused courses, a zero-tuition benefit and low-cost learning materials.

But first, what is applied humanities?

At Oregon State, applied humanities is a broad discipline program designed for students to attain a deep knowledge of culture and history as they build philosophical, cultural and ethics-based skills such as creativity, curiosity and empathy. The online applied humanities coursework emphasizes development in critical thinking, written communication and training to deal effectively with complexity, diversity and change.

Pay zero tuition for your final 12 online credits

Students who remain in good academic standing will pay zero tuition for the last 12 Ecampus credits they take to complete their applied humanities bachelor’s degree online with Oregon State.

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While gaining skills that are directly applicable in any workplace, students in the Oregon State Ecampus online program also will have a more affordable pathway to complete a college degree.

Those are a few of the many benefits the applied humanities program delivers. Nicole von Germeten — the head of Oregon State’s School of History, Philosophy and Religion in the College of Liberal Arts — says students will explore a diverse range of topics designed specifically to help them thrive professionally in the United States.

“Many people want to feel like a broadly sophisticated, educated, informed citizen,” Germeten said. “The knowledge we impart in this program will train a person to have integrity and good communication skills within the workplace or within their community.”

Germeten spoke at length about why the applied humanities program is particularly well-suited to produce engaged citizens and successful professionals. Here is what she said about certain key topics.

Developing a broad skill set is ideal for career advancement.

“There is a need for a broader array of global knowledge in the workplace. It’s seems contradictory to current common knowledge, but upward mobility for a student comes from that broad education. That’s what history over the last several decades tells us. A humanities degree can help a person move up the career ladder in a practical way that is a lot more subtle than for people with an extremely specific skill set.

Students can apply what they learn in class to any professional setting.

“Each of our core courses offers a more sophisticated analysis of what you’re going to encounter or already encounter in your daily life. The best success in the workplace won’t necessarily come from a technical skill. That’s definitely needed and can be acquired.

“But the humanities are a discipline where we look at the complexity of our society, of our history. We believe, as professors in these disciplines, that this is what creates an employee with integrity — somebody who has a sense of the different perspectives around them.

Critical thinking is the essence of the applied humanities program.

“For people in the humanities, critical thinking involves looking at a variety of sources and voices and trying to analyze where they’re coming from. It’s really easy to critique people or to ‘cancel’ people, but a good historian or a good scholar doesn’t think like that.

Learning outcomes align with employers’ needs

The coursework in OSU’s online applied humanities program is designed to equip students with the practical, career readiness competencies outlined by the National Association of Colleges and Employers:

· Career and self-development
· Communication
· Critical thinking
· Equity and inclusion
· Leadership
· Professionalism
· Teamwork
· Technology

“We seek to understand more about a person’s point of view. We ask, What’s this person’s background, and why would they speak or write this way? And once you have the tools to understand that context, you can apply them to everything you hear or read or experience throughout the day.”

Most courses use free and affordable learning materials.

“We’ve made a big effort to ensure that many of our classes use low-cost and no-cost resources. Most of them are free texts. We don’t waste students’ time or money on expensive textbooks. That goes against our whole mission, which is about giving students the best and newest information in our fields.”

Students will learn from experts who are committed to student success.

“The faculty in the applied humanities program are longtime, career professionals. There is almost no limit to the research and sources that they can provide students while they’re learning.

“This is our passion. We don’t go into this for any reason other than the love of learning and sharing knowledge with our students. And because we’ve dedicated our lives to this, I think that also makes us really compassionate to students.”


Learn more about Oregon State’s applied humanities online bachelor’s program and how it can help you more affordably complete your degree.

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