Jun 19, 2024  
2023-2024 Catalog 
2023-2024 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

College of Humanities, Arts, Behavioral and Social Sciences

Mission Statement

The College of Humanities, Arts, and Behavioral and Social Sciences (CHABSS) offers education rooted in the liberal arts tradition, responsive to new ideas and challenges, and attuned to the diversity of human experience. Grounded in the scholarly and creative activity of our faculty, our programs are dedicated to preparing students for lifelong careers of leadership, learning, creativity, professional achievement, and community service.

Features of the College

As a scholarly community, the College integrates diverse academic disciplines, research fields, creative arts, and interdisciplinary programs, offering students multiple pathways to explore ideas, ideals, visions, and values.

The intellectual identity of the College centers on topics encompassing the origins and structure of behavior and action, society and culture, and the history and future of human expression, reflection, and creativity.

Students gain a global perspective on diverse peoples, histories, societies and cultures, through sustained exploration of the arts, humanities, and social and behavioral sciences.

College faculty and staff foster a supportive, inclusive, and rigorous learning environment and workplace, upholding the highest standards of academic endeavor and organizational ethics.

The faculty is committed to a teacher-scholar model of academic life, drawing from active scholarship and creativity to sustain inspired and effective teaching.

College programs emphasize active student learning, critical thinking, and original student research and creative work. Students sharpen age-old skills of writing, speaking, and reasoning, while exploring the newest technologies in the classroom, studio, and laboratory.

Undergraduate and graduate degree programs enable students to explore their chosen fields in depth, master specialized knowledge at advanced levels, and focus their commitment to individual and social progress. General education courses present basic orientations to multiple disciplines, helping students attain a broad and coherent worldview. Service learning opportunities reach beyond campus, engaging students in community partnerships, building awareness of regional needs, and inspiring practical realization of ethics, integrity and citizenship.

Together, the faculty and staff of CHABBS promote education that is comprehensive, integrative, and transformative, offering students new ways to see themselves and the world, from the foundations of animal behavior to the highest expressions of human existence.

Language Proficiency Requirement

The College community values learning a language other than English as a part of the foundation of a liberal arts education. Language proficiency enhances our students’ educational experience and the skills needed to compete in a globalized world. To ensure students in CHABSS acquire this essential skill, majors in American Indian Studies; Anthropology; Art, Media, and Design; Child and Adolescent Development; Communication; Criminology and Justice Studies; Environmental Studies; Ethnic Studies; Geography; Global Studies; History; Linguistics; Liberal Studies Elementary Subject Matter; Literature and Writing Studies; Media Studies; Political Science; Psychological Science; Social Sciences; Sociology (all concentrations); Theatre Arts; and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies must meet a second-language proficiency requirement. 

For detail on how to satisfy this requirement, please refer to the Language Proficiency Requirement  for your major. 

Breadth Requirement 

For majors in the College of Humanities, Arts, Behavioral and Social Sciences (CHABSS), the Breadth Requirement will only be required for the first major, not the second major, as long as both majors are in CHABSS.  All degrees in CHABSS contain a 3-unit Breadth Requirement with the exception of Liberal Studies and Music.  If the first major is in another College, and the second major is in CHABSS, the Breadth Requirement will be required in the second major. 


Contact Information for Courses in Areas without Degree Programs

Discipline Course Prefix Contact Person or Program
Arts and Humanities AH Literature and Writing Studies Department
Arabic ARAB Modern Language Studies Department
Chinese CHIN Modern Language Studies Department
Convergent Journalism CJRN Office of the Dean, College of Humanities, Arts, Behavioral and Social Sciences
General Education Oral Communication GEO Communication Department
General Education Written Communication GEW Literature & Writing Studies Department
Geography GEOG Liberal Studies Department
Interdisciplinary Studies ID Office of the Dean, College of Humanities, Arts, Behavioral and Social Sciences & Liberal Studies Department (for most courses)
Modern Language Studies MLAN Modern Language Studies Department

Academic Advising

Faculty advisors may be available to advise students on questions about courses specific to the major/minor, program and concentration choices, career and graduate school planning, advanced research/creative activities, or internship. Please refer to department websites for faculty advising information: http://www.csusm.edu/chabss/academics/degrees.html.

Staff Academic Advisors assist CHABSS majors with graduation planning, degree requirements, general education requirements, and enrollment issues. Academic advising appointments can be made online at www.csusm.edu/academicadvising. Students may also meet with an Academic Advisor through various drop-in advising services offered throughout the year.

Pre-Professional Preparation

Pre-Professional Planning

Pre-Law Advising

California State University San Marcos offers various undergraduate courses to help students prepare for careers in law. Students interested in applying to law school should note that law schools do not require any particular majors or prerequisites. Students seeking advice on preparation for law schools should consult with their major faculty advisor. For more specific information on pre-law advising, contact the Office of the Dean, College of Humanities, Arts, Behavioral and Social Sciences at (760) 750-4200.

Kindergarten through High School Teacher Preparation

California State University San Marcos offers Subject Matter Preparation Programs required for students to demonstrate the subject matter competency necessary for admission to a Teacher Credential Program.

For students interested in becoming high school teachers, the Department of History within the College of Humanities, Arts, Behavioral and Social Sciences offers single-subject preparation in social science. For more information on this degree please visit the History Department website at http://www.csusm.edu/history/.

Students seeking to become elementary or middle school teachers may complete the Elementary Subject Matter option in the Liberal Studies major. This program explicitly addresses the various subject matters included in curricula of grades kindergarten through eight, and therefore, they provide excellent pathways to a career in teaching. Please see the Liberal Studies section of this catalog for more information, or visit the Liberal Studies Advising website at http://www.csusm.edu/liberalstudiesadvising/.

Students seeking a Single-Subject Matter Preparation Program for teaching high school Mathematics should visit the CSUSM Math Department website: https://www.csusm.edu/math/ssmp1/index.html.

Career Readiness & Professional Preparation

The College of Humanities, Arts, Behavioral and Social Sciences provides opportunities to students for career readiness and professional preparation. The following opportunities exist on a college-wide level. Students are encouraged to also consult with the departments of CHABSS majors (and minors) for additional opportunities.

CHABSS Career Network

The CHABSS Career Network enhances students’ career readiness by connecting them with local professionals who volunteer to serve as mentors for career, graduate school, and other professional matters. Our mentor corps includes community leaders, university professional staff, and alumni. For more specific information on the CHABSS Career Network, contact the Office of the Dean, College of Humanities, Arts, Behavioral and Social Sciences at (760) 750-4200.


Students:  Seeking an internship? Several departments in the College of Humanities, Arts, Behavioral and Social Sciences offer credit-bearing internship courses. Please check the website of your department. The Career Center (www.csusm.edu/careers) and CSUSM’s Office of Internship (www.csusm.edu/internships) are also good sources of information for students seeking internships.

Career Readiness and Professional Communication Course: ID 411A , ID 411B , ID 411C  

This cross-disciplinary, variable-unit course helps students prepare for careers with extensive practice in professional writing and presenting in a workshop format.

Students, faculty, and staff are welcome to contact the Office of the Dean for the College of Humanities, Arts, Behavioral and Social Sciences for more information as well as resources and services provided by the College. Visit us at our office on fourth floor of the Social and Behavioral Science Building (SBSB 4115), 760/750-4200,  or online (http://www.csusm.edu/chabss).