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This article's introduction section may not adequately summarize its contents. To comply with Wikipedia's lead section guidelines, please consider expanding the lead to provide an accessible overview of the article's key points. (January 2010) The seven liberal arts – Picture from the Hortus deliciarum of Herrad von Landsberg (12th century) The term liberal arts denotes a curriculum that imparts general knowledge and develops the student’s rational thought and intellectual capabilities, unlike the professional, vocational and technical curricula emphasizing specialization. The contemporary liberal arts comprise studying literature, languages, philosophy, history, mathematics, and science.[1] Contents 1 History 2 Liberal arts in the United States 3 See also 4 References 5 Further reading 6 External links // History In classical antiquity, the liberal arts denoted the education proper to a free person (Latin: liber, “free”)[citation needed]—contrary to popular opinion, freeborn girls were as likely to receive formal education as boys, especially during the Roman Empire—unlike the lack-of-education, or purely manual/technical skills, proper to a slave.[original research?][citation needed] The "liberal arts" or "liberal pursuits" (Latin liberalia studia) were already so called in formal education during the Roman Empire; for example, Seneca the Younger discusses liberal arts in education from a critical Stoic point of view in Moral Epistle 88.[2] The subjects that would become the standard "Liberal Arts" in Roman and Medieval times already comprised the basic curriculum in the enkuklios paideia or "education in a circle" of late Classical and Hellenistic Greece. In the 5th century AD, Martianus Capella defined the seven Liberal Arts as: grammar, dialectic, rhetoric, geometry, arithmetic, astronomy, and music. In the medieval Western university, the seven liberal arts were:[3] the Trivium grammar rhetoric logic the Quadrivium arithmetic astronomy music geometry Liberal arts in the United States Main article: Liberal arts college Further information: Liberal arts colleges in the United States and Great Books Program In the United States, Liberal arts colleges are schools emphasizing undergraduate study in the liberal arts. Traditionally earned over four years of full-time study, the student earned either a Bachelor of Arts degree or a Bachelor of Science degree; on completing undergraduate study, students might progress to either a graduate school or a professional school (public administration, business, law, medicine, theology). The teaching is Socratic,[citation needed] to small classes,[citation needed] and at a greater teacher-to-student ratio than at universities;[citation needed] professors teaching classes are allowed to concentrate more on their teaching responsibilities than primary research professors or graduate student teaching assistants, in contrast to the instruction common in universities.[original research?][dubious – discuss] Despite the European origin of the liberal arts college,[4] the term liberal arts college usually denotes liberal arts colleges in the United States. See also Bachelor of Arts Bachelor of General Studies Bachelor of Liberal Arts Bachelor of Liberal Studies Doctor of Liberal Studies Great Books Program Great Books Programs in Canada Liberal arts college Master of Liberal Studies The Mechanical Arts References ^ "Liberal Arts: Encyclopedia Britannica Concise". Encyclopedia Britannica. http://concise.britannica.com/ebc/article-9370154/liberal-arts.  ^ Seneca Epistle 88 at Stoics.com ^ "James Burke: The Day the Universe Changed In the Light Of the Above". http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kgXzwOV-WNI&t=02m26s.  ^ Harriman, Philip (1935). "Antecedents of the Liberal Arts College". The Journal of Higher Education, Vol. 6, No. 2 (1935), pp. 63–71. http://www.jstor.org/view/00221546/di962074/96p0148k/0.  Further reading Blaich, Charles, Anne Bost, Ed Chan, and Richard Lynch. "Defining Liberal Arts Education." Center of Inquiry in the Liberal Arts, 2004. Blanshard, Brand. The Uses of a Liberal Education: And Other Talks to Students. (Open Court, 1973. ISBN 0-8126-9429-5) Friedlander, Jack. Measuring the Benefits of Liberal Arts Education in Washington's Community Colleges. Los Angeles: Center for the Study of Community Colleges, 1982a. (ED 217 918) Joseph, Sister Miriam. The Trivium: The Liberal Arts of Logic, Grammar, and Rhetoric. Paul Dry Books Inc, 2002. Pfnister, Allen O. "The Role of the Liberal Arts College." The Journal of Higher Education. Vol. 55, No. 2 (March/April 1984): 145–170. Reeves, Floyd W. "The Liberal-Arts College." The Journal of Higher Education. Vol. 1, No. 7 (1930): 373–380. Seidel, George. "Saving the Small College." The Journal of Higher Education. Vol. 39, No. 6 (1968): 339–342. Winterer, Caroline.The Culture of Classicism: Ancient Greece and Rome in American Intellectual Life, 1780–1910. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2002. Wriston, Henry M. The Nature of a Liberal College. Lawrence University Press, 1937. T. Kaori Kitao, William R. Kenan, Jr. (27 March 1999). The Usefulness Of Uselessness. Keynote Address, The 1999 Institute for the Academic Advancement of Youth's Odyssey at Swarthmore College. http://www.honors.ucr.edu/files/SUHP2006/usefulness.pdf.  External links Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Liberal arts Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Seven liberal arts The Annapolis Group/College News The Classical Liberal Arts Academy Philosophy of Liberal Education Liberal Arts at the Community College A Descriptive Analysis of the Community College Liberal Arts Curriculum The Center of Inquiry in the Liberal Arts Academic Commons CatholiCity: Catholic Encyclopedia What are the liberal arts? at liberalartsadvantage.com  "Arts, Liberal". New International Encyclopedia. 1905.