Humanities Major (B.A.)

Humanities Major (B.A.)

humanities major

Shaping insightful thinkers through liberal arts exploration

Channel your curiosity about the human condition with our highly interdisciplinary humanities program. With self-designed concentrations and faculty mentorship, you’ll develop the intellectual, analytical and communication skills that will set you apart in any industry.

What is humanities?

The humanities discipline questions the fundamentals of existence, examining the human experience through society and culture. From Greek tragedies to postmodern novels to Renaissance sculpture, the humanities explores the cultural, social and behavioral theories, and experiences that influence the human condition.

Why study humanities at UNH Manchester?

Through self-designed concentrations and faculty mentorship, UNH Manchester’s highly interdisciplinary humanities program develops the intellectual, analytical and communication skills that will set you apart in any industry. As a humanities major, you’ll sharpen your abilities in analysis and critical thinking through exploration of diverse works of art, music, literature, history, philosophy and the sciences. Let your interests fuel your studies with self-designed concentrations, from the social and ethical implications of genetic engineering to the examination of a historical period through literature, arts and more.

Potential careers

  • Advertising, promotions or marketing manager
  • Archivist
  • Curator
  • Historian
  • History teacher or professor
  • Human resources specialist
  • Museum worker
  • Paralegal or legal assistant


Massachusetts does not offer a bachelor's-level humanities program in their public universities, so students from Massachusetts pay a reduced tuition rate through the New England Regional Student Program.


Curriculum & Requirements

The UNH Manchester humanities program is an interdisciplinary study of the human condition, past and present. The program is based on careful examination of substantial works from a variety of disciplines and is intended to develop intellectual skills, specialized knowledge, and breadth of understanding. It provides students with a broad foundation of knowledge and skills in the liberal arts combined with a coordinated, self-designed program of studies in an area of individual student interest.

The program attracts highly motivated students who wish to assume significant responsibility for the content and direction of their studies. Humanities students develop skills of analysis, critical assessment, and effective communication as they study diverse works of art, music, literature, history, philosophy, and the sciences. Individually designed programs may cover the full range of student interests: for example, the social and ethical implications of genetic engineering or the examination of an historical period through study of its literature, arts, history, philosophy, and sciences. Students complete their major with two capstone seminars. The first, HUMA 795 Study of Creativity, explores the nature of creativity through the lives and works of individuals such as Leonardo da Vinci, Kathe Kollwitz, Mozart, Freud, Einstein, and Georgia O'Keeffe. The second seminar, HUMA 796 Study of Contemporary Issues, explores current social and political issues with a focus on developments in public policy, science, and business, and their impact on social values.

Humanities majors find employment in a wide range of fields or pursue graduate study in subjects such as law or education. Skills and knowledge developed through the major are important in virtually all social and career responsibilities. A humanities major or minor can also complement work in other majors such as elementary or secondary education, business, communications, or computer information systems.

This degree plan is a sample and does not reflect the impact of transfer credit or current course offerings. UNH Manchester undergraduate students will develop individual academic plans with their professional advisor during the first year at UNH.

Sample Course Sequence

Plan of Study Grid
First Year
UMST 401
or UMST 402
First Year Seminar
or Transfer Seminar
ENGL 401 First-Year Writing 4
Elective 4
Elective 4
Discovery Course 4
Quantative Reasoning 4
HUMA 411 Humanities I 4
Discovery Course 4
Elective 4
Second Year
Foreign Language 4
HUMA 412 Humanities II 4
ENGL 419 How to Read Anything 4
Discovery Course 4
Foreign Language 4
Major Concentration 4
Elective 4
Discovery Course 4
Third Year
Major Concentration 4
Discovery Course 4
Elective 4
Elective 4
Major Concentration 4
Discovery Course 4
Elective 4
Elective 4
Fourth Year
Major Concentration 4
HUMA 795 Study of Creativity 4
Discovery Course 4
Elective 4
Major Concentration 4
HUMA 796 Study of Contemporary Issues 4
Discovery course 4
Elective 4
 Total Credits129

Program of Study

For the humanities major at UNH Manchester, students must complete a minimum of 128 credits and satisfy the University's Discovery Program and foreign language requirements, and students must complete 40 credits with a minimum grade of C in each course in the major.

Core Courses
HIST 500Introduction to Historical Thinking4
or ENGL 419 How to Read Anything
HUMA 411Humanities I4
HUMA 412Humanities II4
Self-Designed Concentration 120
Discovery Program Capstone Courses
HUMA 795Study of Creativity4
HUMA 796Study of Contemporary Issues4
Total Credits40

This is an approved program of study designed by the student in consultation with a faculty advisor. In addition to courses available on the Manchester campus, students may, with prior approval, use courses from area colleges and the University's Durham campus. The concentration is made up of two humanities courses (HUMA prefix) at the 600 or 700 level and three courses from any relevant discipline at any level.

For more information, contact Susanne Paterson, Associate Professor and program coordinator or the UNH Manchester Office of Admissions at (603) 641-4150.

  • Demonstrate the ability to find and evaluate primary and secondary source material necessary for humanistic research.
  • Demonstrate the ability to propose, conduct, and present interdisciplinary humanistic research in a written, oral, or other forms. Identify and interpret creative and cultural forms from a given historical period.
  • Compare and contrast the meanings of major texts and other significant cultural productions.

Explore Program Details

The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects positive growth in many careers that demand sharp skills in critical thinking, analytical and communication — skills that are central to the humanities program.

Your humanities degree will open doors to careers in industries from business to technology to arts and beyond, or prepare you for graduate studies in law, education and more. Whatever you hope to achieve after graduation, you’ll be armed with the skills and experience for a bright future.

Job Title Job Growth Average Salary
Advertising, Promotions or Marketing Manager 9% $124,850
Archivist, Curator or Museum Worker 7% $46,710
High School Teacher 6% $57,200
Historian 2% $55,800
History Teacher, Postsecondary 13% $72,470
Human Resources Specialist 5% $58,350
Middle School Teacher 6% $55,860
Paralegal or Legal Assistant 8% $48,810

Learn more about career planning

Our campus is in the heart of the region’s cultural, economic, entertainment and government activity — putting unlimited internship opportunities at your doorstep. We’ve partnered with local businesses to give you the real-world experience that sets you apart.

“Rather than thinking of education in a vacuum, as something to prepare you for something else after graduation, the internship actually bridges education with career.”

Jack Resch, Program Coordinator and Professor of Humanities

Humanities majors have interned at many high-profile organizations in the area, including:

  • Franco-American Centre
  • Green Alliance
  • Manchester Historic Association
  • Mariposa Museum of World Cultures
  • New Hampshire Historical Society

Learn more about internships


Add a breadth of perspective to your degree with a humanities minor, giving you a foundational understanding of the human condition through art, music, history, literature and more.


Complement any degree with a philosophy minor, giving you the analytical, interpretive and critical reasoning skills that employers in any industry look for.

View all minors

Program News

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