The Liberal Arts

The College of Idaho offers a liberal arts education. "Liberal arts" is a frequently misunderstood phrase, and although the liberal arts are variously defined, they represent an educational tradition born in ancient Greece. In its ideal form, a liberal arts education encourages individuals to seek personal foundations for the choices they make as they live their lives, and to pursue intellectual freedom from the constraints of society, history, tradition, and ignorance. Here at The College of Idaho, we take care to introduce students to the disciplines-the arts and sciences -that will empower them to live fully and well.

The College of Idaho continues the tradition of an education based in the liberal arts because we believe such an education enables students to experience curiosity, social responsibility, and inquiry. We believe that a student who is liberally educated recognizes the importance and powers of thinking logically, imaginatively, and independently; writing and speaking forcefully and effectively; framing questions and finding difficult answers creatively; thinking broadly across the lines of traditional academic disciplines; assessing values; and approaching others with understanding and compassion. Through exposure to the liberal arts disciplines-the humanities and fine arts; the social sciences and history; the natural sciences and mathematics-students learn the methods and perspectives of many ways of knowing the world. They become broadly educated and capable of making choices grounded in knowledge.