MAIS Facts

M.A.I.S. (Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies, formerly known as Liberal Studies) is a unique graduate degree at UALR. Rather than focusing on a single field the MAIS degree is composed of two areas of study, combined into an interdisciplinary degree plan. Each student is able to design a degree with areas of study that are the most relevant to that student.

MAIS Facts:

  • Our students come from diverse professional and academic backgrounds
  • Our students range in age from recent traditional-aged undergraduates to new retirees
  • MAIS graduates are currently active as teachers, PhD students, and professionals
  • You can pursue the MAIS degree part-time or full-time
  • Some courses may be available online or in evening sessions
  • Graduate Assistantships and financial aid options are available
  • MAIS faculty are involved throughout the campus and conduct research in multiple areas


“As an educator and multimedia producer it is critical that I communicate effectively across disciplines to develop messages that inform, educate, and inspire.  MALS allows me to target courses in various fields that strengthen the skills I need to be successful.”

  •  —Alum Kevin Quinn studied History and Journalism and completed a thesis entitled “The old gray lady and the campaign for the equal right amendment in Arkansas: A content analysis of the Arkansas Gazette 1972-1979”.

MAIS Program Goals

The MAIS degree has two primary goals: (1) that the students will come to appreciate and recognize disciplinary distinctions, and (2) that the students will learn to appropriate information from at least two different disciplines and apply that information to a research, creative, or applied project.

More specifically, the graduates of the MAIS program will be able to:
1. examine the elements that define at least one of the academic disciplines they have chosen to pursue, including its advantages and limitations;
2. define an interdisciplinary project and its significance;
3. develop a resolution in an interdisciplinary project that is backed by relevant evidence and/or input from at least two different disciplines;
4. communicate to an audience with diverse disciplinary training.