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A&S Facts

The College of Arts and Sciences is the largest and most diverse College at the University of Kentucky. With a strong foundation in the liberal arts, the College has majors in the humanities, social sciences, and mathematics/natural sciences, and touches every student at the University of Kentucky.

As a leading college united in excellence, Arts & Sciences cultivates elevated student learning and experiences, advances innovative research and scholarship, and positively impacts the lives of people in the Commonwealth, nation, and world. With 19 departments, 32 majors, 37 minors, and six undergraduate certificates, the options are endless in the College of Arts & Sciences.


  1. As the flagship university of the state, UK is the primary depository for Kentucky’s archaeological collections.  Our majors have the opportunity to intern (i.e., pursue independent research projects) with the faculty and staff because of our significant archaeological collections.  They can do so through the museum (see Nr. 2) or the Program for Archaeological research, which conducts archaeological surveys and excavations through contracts with the state.  This provides opportunities for students to get hands on experience in excavation, laboratory analysis, or museum work.
  2. The Department of Anthropology encompasses a museum (the William S. Webb Museum of Anthropology) with approximately 9,000 collections containing more than 2 million artifacts!  This provides internship opportunities for our majors that are unique in the state!
  3. The Department of Anthropology also encompasses the Office of State Archaeology, with a library that holds approximately 8,500 volumes on Kentucky archaeology and records on approximately 23,000 archaeological sites in the commonwealth.  Here, too, are unique opportunities for our majors to conduct independent study or to complete an internship.
  4. The Department of Anthropology encompasses a vibrant undergraduate student organization. Called Umoja (KiSwahili for “unity”), membership allows students to explore their interests in anthropology outside the classroom.  Member of Umoja host a number of events that promote the study of anthropology, that enrich the community, and that facilitate student-faculty interaction outside the classroom.  Joining and active participation is an excellent way to meet peers that share your own interests!
  5. Almost every summer, the Department of Anthropology offers a field school in Archaeology.  Conducted during the 8-week summer session, the 6 credit hour course provides students with hands-on experience in archaeological excavation methods. Fors students considering the field of archaeology as a career, field school is a crucial first step in gaining first hand knowledge and expertise.  Past sites include:  Camp Nelson, KY; Sapelo Island, GA; and the Carter Robinson Mississippian mound and village site, VA.


  1. Biology is the largest major at UK.
  2. Research in Biology brings more than $6 million to the University.
  3. The new Biology curriculum prepares students for a wide array of careers including scientific research, medicine, allied health such as nursing, nutrition and physical therapy, forest rangers, pharmaceutical sales and many others.
  4. Biology houses the international Ambystoma stock center.
  5. Biology has a unique urban field station called the Ecological Research Facility.


  1. The Chemistry Department has 34 faculty members, all of whom have PhDs and do research. 
  2. Three majors are offered:  BS - Traditional, BS - Biochemistry, BS - Materials and BA. 
  3. Classes in the first two years are large, but individual help is easy to get. 
  4. Majors normally do independent research under the guidance of a faculty mentor. 
  5. Majors go on to professional or graduate school (including some of the best) or to full-time employment. 


  1. English is one of the most popular majors in the college of Arts & Sciences. Many of our students study abroad, and earn credit for doing internships in publishing, media, and education. Some participate in Honors, become Chellgren Fellows, or Fellows at the Gaines Center for the Humanities.
  2. In courses in literature, film, and creative writing, students use not just their rational minds, but their emotions and subjectivity.  We teach you to think critically and creatively about the human experience.  This makes you a better person!
  3. Our faculty is top-notch: three of the last five Kentucky Poet Laureates were from the English Dept; our faculty regularly win teaching awards, including the Provost Award for Outstanding Teaching; and many of our professors are experts in their fields and publish books and articles in well-respected, peer-reviewed presses and journals.
  4. Getting a degree in English will give you skills that apply widely in today's job market: reading, research, writing, and communicating with others.  After graduation our students have gone on to jobs in business, the arts, publishing, education, law, and much more.
  5. Students in English have a lively community and have several clubs--Sigma Tau Delta (an international English Honor Society), Graphite (for creative writers)--and contribute to the undergraduate literary journal, Shale.  There are many ways to get involved. 

Gender and Women's Studies

  1. Courses with Interdisciplinary, transnational Material
  2. Research focus on body, transnational, queer, & popular culture issues
  3. Student-Friendly Atmosphere; Student-Friendly Spaces
  4. Opportunities for Connections between Courses and Experiential Learning
  5. Active connections to student groups including VIP Center.


  1. Small classes and extensive individual attention from faculty
  2. Many study abroad opportunities with scholarships available
  3. Classes in German and English; culture classes on film, pop culture, business and the economy
  4. Faculty assistance to pursue internships and other professional opportunities
  5. Kaffeestundes, “Coffee Hours”, are hosted by German graduate students and features a presentation in English on some aspect of German culture once a month. All students are welcomed to attend and enjoy some German pastries and coffee.

Hispanic Studies

  1. Hispanic Studies is a top-ten program nation-wide: Our doctoral program was ranked in the top ten of our discipline according to the Faculty Productivity Index (Academic Analytics, 2007).
  2. Hispanic Studies is devoted to Spanish, Latin American, and Transatlantic Studies (3 faculty in Language, Second Language Acquisition and Hispanic Linguistics; 5 in Spanish Studies; 4 in Latin American Studies; and 5 lecturers in different fields)
  3. Hispanic Studies enjoys a well-established concentration in Film & Visual Studies (Spain and Latin America), a film series, and the participation of renowned film makers.
  4. Hispanic Studies established a departmental Spanish Honors program in 2008-09 that is producing cutting-edge research among our highly-motivated undergraduates.
  5. Hispanic Studies is proud of its students, its diverse faculty, its interdisciplinary approach to teaching, research and learning, and its outreach to the Hispanic community in Central Kentucky.


  1. Six current members of the history faculty have received the “Great Teacher” Award, and several others have won the Provost’s Outstanding Teacher Award.
  2. Faculty are engaged in a wide variety of disciplines, and have written some of the standard works in their fields.
  3. History is a great major for pre-law students, as well as those contemplating a career in government or teaching.
  4. Students are given the opportunity to take part and become a member in Phi Alpha Theta, The History Honor Society.
  5. The history curriculum is designed with 4 goals in mind: to enhance writing and communication skills, acquaint students with the basic tools of interpretation, enhance critical thinking and analytical skills, & develop student awareness of the diversity and complexity of human social, cultural, political, and economic institutions. .

International Studies

  1. As one of the youngest majors in the College of Arts and Sciences, the International Studies Major began in Fall, 2007, and has grown extremely quickly to more than 365 IS majors today!  This fast growth is a testament to the interest and recognition of students in Kentucky and surrounding states in the importance of being globally connected in today’s world.
  2. The IS major requires at least one more year of a world language than is required by the College of Arts and Sciences, but many majors like the challenge of learning languages so much that they learn one very well, and then try another!
  3. The vast majority of IS majors study or conduct an internship (a work or volunteer experience) abroad.  Through UK’s Education Abroad office, UK students can study abroad for an intersession, a summer, a semester or a year.  There is competitive scholarship money available for IS majors through IS, the College of Arts and Sciences, as well as the Education Abroad office.  And students loans can be used while having an abroad term.  So take advantage of the extracurricular opportunities afforded by your undergraduate career at UK!
  4. The IS major includes NoGS, the Network of Global Scholars, which is the student organization connected to the IS program.  NoGS members share an interest in all things international, organizing activities, liaising with foreign students studying at UK, and sharing meals of international cuisine.  This is a great way to meet peers with your same interests.  Get involved in NoGS!
  5. Every spring, IS offers a service-learning course called Internship in International Studies.  Students intern with an internationally focused business or agency in the Bluegrass, volunteering there for approximately 7 hours per week.  The internship experience is reinforced through class readings and weekly seminars where participants share their real world experiences.  In the past, students have volunteered to help resettle brand new refugees through Kentucky Refugee Ministries.  They have tutored English as a second language students, and they have offered workshops for new refugees on topics of how to manage life in America!


  1. Offer a rigorous undergraduate (B.A. and B.S.) program in a friendly environment.
  2. Offer a joint undergraduate program in Mathematics Economics with the Department of Economic in the Gatton College of Business.
  3. Over 60 students in the graduate program which offers both Masters and Ph.D. degrees. The courses of study are available in all major areas of pure and applied math.
  4. Have a student exchange program with the Math Department at the City University of Hong Kong.
  5. Students have access to the Mathskeller, a convenient place for any UK student to hang out between classes, socialize, and get free tutoring in numerous math courses. No appointments necessary.

Military Science (Army ROTC)

  1. UK Army ROTC is the #1 Leadership Development Program on UK’s Campus.
  2. Prepares UK students to be U.S. Army Commissioned Officers, while earning their degree of choice.
  3. Develops students academically, physically, morally, and militarily through challenging, real-world curriculum and practical application.
  4. Provides exciting, fully-funded cultural immersion experiences.  Recent destinations include Argentina, Panama, Ghana, Tanzania, India, and Slovakia.
  5. Take advantage of unique leadership development training to include parachuting, rappelling, and other team competitions.

Modern and Classical Languages

  1. We offer courses in ten languages: Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Italian, Japanese, Latin, and Russian.
  2. We offer BA programs in Arabic, Chinese, Classics, French, German, Japanese, and Russian.
  3. We offer a joint BA/BS program in Foreign Languages and International Economics in Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Japanese, Russian, and Spanish.
  4. We offer minors in Arabic & Islamic Studies and Folklore and Mythology
  5. We strongly encourage and help our students to study abroad.         


  1. Philosophy deals with the “big questions” such as the nature of reality, the possibility of knowledge, and the purpose of human life.
  2. Philosophy also teaches practical skills such as how to analyze an argument, how to articulate and defend your views, and how to read and think critically. 
  3. Philosophy majors score higher on the GRE verbal and analytic components than students in any other major.
  4. The UK Philosophy department has a well-balanced program including specialists in the history of philosophy, ethics, political philosophy, metaphysics, and epistemology.
  5. We have recently hired several young faculty with interests as diverse as the ethics of pornography, the philosophy of race, and the nature of space and time.

Physics and Astronomy

  1. Home of the MacAdam Student Observatory
  2. Home of the UK Center for Advanced Materials
  3. Active Chapter of the Society of Physics Students
  4. Substantial Departmental Scholarship opportunities for majors/minors
  5. Small class sizes for all upper division majors courses

Political Science

  1. 16 faculty members
  2. Around 500 majors
  3. Pi Sigma Alpha, undergraduate student honorary
  4. Well-rounded curriculum
  5. Popular major for students into in going to law school


  1. Various, interesting research opportunities, ranging from brain activity to social behavior
  2. Many internship opportunities
  3. Capstone courses with small class size
  4. Senior thesis opportunity
  5. Strong Ph.D. program (e.g., # 1 nationally ranked clinical Ph.D. program in scholarly productivity)


  1. Sociology faculty are internationally recognized researchers in areas such as globalization, the environment, criminology, and inequality.
  2. Our department has an outstanding teaching reputation and includes several award-winning instructors.
  3. We expand education beyond the classroom with service-learning, internships, study abroad, and other innovative courses.
  4. Sociology faculty are active members of interdisciplinary research centers and programs across campus, studying topics such as drug and alcohol use, children at risk, violence against women and Appalachia. 
  5. Our new criminology minor is easily coupled with a Sociology major and offers excellent preparation for a career in law and criminal justice.