Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies Roadmap

120 Total Units Required
Minimum Number of Units in the Major: 42

Plan of Study Grid
First SemesterUnits
GE Area A: Oral Communication (A1) or Critical Thinking (A3) 1 3
GE Area A: Written English Communication (A2) 2 3
GE Area B: Quantitative Reasoning (B4) 3
GE Area D: U.S. History (D2) or U.S. and California Government (D3) 3
Complementary Studies or SF State Studies or University Elective 3 3
Second Semester
GE Area A: Oral Communication (A1) or Critical Thinking (A3) 3
GE Area A: Written English Communication II (A4) 3
GE Area B: Physical Science (B1) and Laboratory Science (B3) 4 3-4
GE Area C: Arts (C1) or Humanities (C2) 3
Complementary Studies or SF State Studies or University Elective 3 3
Third Semester
GE Area A: Written English Communication II (A4) if not already satisfied 3
GE Area B: Life Science (B2) and Laboratory Science (B3) 4 3-4
GE Area C: Arts (C1) 3
GE Area D: U.S. History (D2) or U.S. and California Government (D3) 3
Complementary Studies or SF State Studies or University Elective 3 3
Fourth Semester
GE Area C: Humanities: Literature (C3) 3
GE Area D: Social Sciences (D1) 3
BIOL 100 Human Biology 3
or College Level Biology Course
Complementary Studies or SF State Studies or University Elective – Take Two 3 6
Fifth Semester
LS 300GW Perspectives on Liberal Studies - GWAR 3
Literature (3 units) 5 3
Communication Studies (3-4 units) 6 3-4
Emphasis (12-15 units) – Take Two 7 6
Sixth Semester
LS 400
LS 401
Social Sciences Core I
and Social Sciences Core II
Life Science (3 units) 8 3
Physical Science (3 units) 9 3
GE Area UD-B: Upper Division Physical and/or Life Sciences (Consider SF State Studies Course) 3
Seventh Semester
HUM 425
LS 426
Thought and Image: Humanities
and Thought and Image: Creative Arts
Emphasis (12-15 units) 7 3
GE Area UD-C: Upper Division Arts and/or Humanities (Consider SF State Studies Course) 3
Complementary Studies or SF State Studies or University Elective 3 3
Eighth Semester
LS 690 Liberal Studies Senior Seminar 3
Emphasis (12-15 units) – Take Two 7 6
Complementary Studies or SF State Studies or University Elective – Take Two 3 6
 Total Units120-123

To avoid taking additional units, it is recommended that you meet LLD and SF State Studies requirements (AERM, GP, ES, SJ) within your GE or major.


ENG 114 can only be taken if you complete Directed Self-Placement (DSP) and select ENG 114; if you choose ENG 104/ENG 105 through DSP you will satisfy A2 upon successful completion of ENG 105 in the second semester; multilingual students may be advised into alternative English courses.


Complementary Studies

All students completing a B.A. degree must satisfy the 12 unit Complementary Studies requirement. Students who complete the Liberal Studies major will automatically satisfy complementary studies with 12 units of courses outside of the Liberal Studies prefix (LS) and not cross-listed with LS. Students must consult with an advisor to identify the courses that will be used to satisfy the requirement.

Students who have earned AA-T or AS-T degrees and are pursuing a similar B.A. degree at SF State are required to fulfill the Complementary Studies requirement as defined by the major department. Students should consult with a major advisor about how transfer units and/or SF State units can best be applied to this requirement in order to ensure degree completion within 60 units.


Consider taking a class combined with a laboratory or a separate lab to fulfill B3 if not already satisfied.



AA S 322 Chinese American Language and Literature (3 units)

AA S 332 Japanese American Art and Literature (3 units)

AA S 352 Filipina/o American Literature, Art, and Culture (3 units)

AA S 372 Vietnamese American Literature (3 units)

AA S 512 Asian American Children's/Adolescent Literature (3 units)

AFRS 411 African and African American Literature (3 units)

CWL 440 "Typical American": Narratives of Multiculturalism in the Americas from 1492 to the Present (3 units)

ENG 398 Greek American Literature (3 units)

ENG 528 American Literature: 1914-1960 (3 units)

ENG 535 Literature and Ecology (3 units)

ENG 554 Modern American Novel (3 units)

ENG 555 The Short Story (3 units)

ENG 583 Shakespeare: Representative Plays (3 units)

ENG 584 Shakespeare: Selected Plays (3 units)

ENG 614 Women in Literature: Authors and Characters (3 units)

ENG 631 Post-Colonial Literature in English (3 units)

ENG 636 Greek and Roman Myth and Modern Literature (3 units)

ENG 655 Literature and the Adolescent Reader (3 units)

LTNS 560 Contemporary Latina/o Literature (3 units)

RRS 450 Contemporary Arabic and Arab American Literature (3 units)

WGS 541 Women Writers and Social Change (3 units)

WGS 548 Literature by U.S. Women of Color (3 units)

WGS 551 Queer Literatures and Media (3 units)


Communication Studies

COMM 220 Introduction to the Performance of Literature (3 units)

COMM 230 Introduction to Argumentation and Debate (3 units)

COMM 250 Introduction to Group Discussion and Teamwork (3 units)

COMM 551 Persuasion (4 units)

COMM 552 Performance and Feminism (4 units)

COMM 553 Performance and Identity (4 units)

COMM 554 Performance of Children's Literature (4 units)

COMM 559 Theory and Practice in Advanced Public Speaking (4 units)


Emphasis Pattern Beyond the Core (15 Units)

Fifteen semester units beyond the core must be taken with liberal studies advisor approval, with at least six units completed at the upper division level. Students may choose to complete an approved minor in lieu of an area of emphasis. Refer to the Liberal Studies website ( and consult with a major advisor regarding possible emphases.

Students interested in becoming elementary school teachers are strongly encouraged to choose the Teacher Preparation Emphasis which can be found at the end of the list of other emphasis patterns.

Area I: Communication, Language, and Literature

  • English Language: Literature, Language, and Communication
  • Literature and Oral Performance
  • Languages and Literatures Other Than English
    • Chinese
    • Classical Languages
    • French
    • German
    • Italian
    • Japanese
    • Russian
    • Spanish

Area II: Life Science, Physical Science, and Mathematics

  • Earth and Space Science
  • Environmental Science
  • Life Science
  • Mathematics
  • Physics and Astronomy

Area III: Behavioral and Social Sciences

  • Anthropology
  • Economics
  • Ethnic Studies
  • Geography
  • Health, Kinesiology, and Recreation
  • History
  • International Relations
  • Political Science
  • Urban Studies

Area IV: Creative Arts and Humanities

  • Creative Arts
  • Humanities
  • Philosophy
  • Philosophy and Religion

Integrated Studies

  • Ancient Mediterranean Civilizations
  • California Studies
  • Early Childhood Education
  • Gender, Culture, and Representation
  • Jewish Studies
  • Multidisciplinary Ethnic Studies

Teacher Preparation Emphasis

Future elementary school teachers are expected to be familiar with all of the subject matter taught in schools. Students seeking the Multiple Subject Credential must pass the CSET: Multiple Subjects examination. To support your preparation for the CSET, students are advised choose the Teacher Preparation emphasis for your courses beyond the core.  

Students interested in becoming elementary or special education teachers should also attend an information meeting given by the Credential and Graduate Services Center. At the meeting, students learn all of the credential program admission requirements. Call (415) 405–3594 for more information. General information about teaching careers may be found at the Credential and Graduate Services Center in BH 244.

Elementary Teaching Preparation Emphasis (15 units)

MATH 165 Concepts of the Number System (3 units)
and MATH 565 Concepts of Geometry, Measurement, and Probability (3 units)

Select three of the following or approved alternative:

E ED 603 Promoting Young Children's Social and Emotional Development (3 units)

EDUC 450 Art and Learning (3 units)

HIST 114 World History to 1500 (3 units)

KIN 401 Elementary School Physical Education, K-5 (3 units)

MUS 601 Music for Children (3 units)

TH A 451 Storytelling and Folk Literature (3 units)


 Life Science

BIOL 300 Nature Study (3 units)

BIOL 310 Biology for Today's World (3 units)

BIOL 313 Principles of Ecology (3 units)

BIOL 318 Our Endangered Planet (3 units)

BIOL 326 Disease! (3 units)

BIOL 327 AIDS: Biology of the Modern Epidemic (3 units)

BIOL 330 Human Sexuality (3 units)

LS 430 Future of the Forests (3 units)


 Physical Science

CHEM 380 Chemistry Behind Environmental Pollution (3 units)

ERTH 310 The Violent Earth (3 units)

ERTH 325 Geology of the National Parks (3 units)

ERTH 330 California Water (3 units)

ERTH 335 Global Warming (3 units)

ERTH 360 California Weather Events (3 units)

ERTH 365 Extreme Weather in a Warming World (3 units)

LS 309 Physical Sciences for Elementary School Teachers (3 units)