C A L I F O R N I A S T A T E U N I V E R S I T Y B A K E R S F I E L D
Dorothy Donahoe Hall, B102
(661) 664-2132 (fax)
Dean: Marla M. Iyasere
The School of Humanities and Social Sciences was established in Fall 2000 after the School of Arts and Sciences was divided into two independent academic units. Humanities and Social Sciences represents the "liberal arts," which is defined as those studies in a university that provide "free persons" with the opportunity for higher education in diverse disciplines, distinguished from professional and technical subjects. The broad scope of the liberal arts nurtures the development of a "free mind" while providing the foundation of knowledge and skills necessary for careers in a profession. The concept of a liberal arts education emphasizes critical thinking, self-expression, social tolerance, ethical behavior, and service for the enhancement of our communities.
Academic programs in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences represent the expression of human behaviors, ideas, values, and creativity within the diverse contexts of our society — cultural, linguistic, economic, political, historical, philosophical, religious, literary, and artistic. The faculty in the School are committed to the development of creative and inquisitive intellectual abilities and skills through a planned course of study that emphasizes the interrelated nature of knowledge. This knowledge gained by studying the humanities and social sciences contributes to the intellectual growth, emotional enrichment, and personal autonomy that characterize all educated men and women living in a free society.
The faculty in each academic program are charged with the task of explaining to an increasingly mature student body from increasing disparate backgrounds the reasons for the existence of their respective field of study, its historical traditions and development, its relevance and application to current issues, its tools and methodologies used to acquire information, and its limitations in the face of our rapidly changing environments. The faculty are also charged with challenging our students to accept increasing responsibility for their own education, which includes not only mastery of the subject matter content of their chosen field of study but also the ability to think logically and critically, to employ systematic observation and analysis, and to present understandable solutions to identified problems. The intellectual process of this development is accomplished in part by having our students advance through a curricular sequence from introductory courses and basic skills to advanced courses focusing on specific disciplinary issues, problems, and methodologies.