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Applied Liberal Arts (ALA)


A new LSA initiative, Applied Liberal Arts (ALA) courses allow students to develop and hone a range of essential skills for success in college and other opportunities, especially for first- and second-year students as you explore majors, minors, internships, and other options for personal and professional growth.

ALA courses include the following topics and more:

  • Personal Finance
  • Internship Readiness
  • Leadership
  • Social Innovation
  • Public Speaking
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Digital Research

Innovative Approaches

ALA was also created to provide broad, multidisciplinary approaches to a range of topics. Examples include the 22 Ways courses (22 Ways to Be Human, 22 Ways to Think About Diversity in Higher Ed, 22 Ways to Think About the History of the University of Michigan, etc.), specialized Sophomore Seminars, and other kinds of class-based innovation.

ALA has already begun to host courses associated with the LSA Opportunity Hub, the cross-campus undergraduate minor in entrepreneurship, and the optiMize Social Innovation Challenge. For the 2016-17 academic year, these courses include Innovator's Toolkit, Critical Issues in Sustainability, and Critical Issues in Detroit.

The number of courses offered through ALA will continue to grow in the next few years, with a focus on helping you envision how skills from your liberal arts education can be used to help you succeed both at U-M and beyond. You can browse the complete list of current ALA offerings via the LSA Course Guide. (Just select "LSA: Applied Liberal Arts" from the "Subject" dropdown menu.)