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School of Liberal Studies

The School of Liberal Studies, through its multidisciplinary, empirical, and learner-driven approach, trains students to be the problem solvers and the thought leaders of tomorrow. Beyond the confines of conventional learning, the school envisages a live connection to the real world. This aspect is organically built into our innovative curriculum, generating a problem-solving mindset and training students to collectively ideate for their society’s future.

#1

Private University in Academic Reputation in India, QS World University Rankings, 2024

#52

Rank in India in the University category, NIRF 2023

10+

Programs offered

40+

Faculty from renowned global institutions such as Cornell, University of Cambridge and more

About School of Liberal Studies

The biggest challenges facing the world today encompass the alleviation of poverty, reduction of inequalities, improving work conditions, and accelerating economic growth, all simultaneously. With consumer spending seen as the engine of growth, it is imperative to ascertain ways to achieve sustainable production and consumption patterns for the future. Climate change threatens the submergence of low-lying communities proliferating the strain on already limited freshwater and other resources. An accompanying and equally important theme is the role of clean energy in addressing climate change and the hidden cost it entails. The current geopolitical climate with two wars raging in Europe and the Middle East with proxy participation of other nations endangers global peace in an increasingly multipolar world. The rapid advent of AI is likely to change how we live and work and in general, coexist with technology.

These challenges faced by our world at large are at the core of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). As is evident, solving each of these issues requires a deep understanding of how these converge and interdepend on each other. It mandates transdisciplinary training and empirical learning which fosters openness of thought to drive innovations that address problems of compound nature.

Focusing broadly on social sciences, humanities and media, the School of Liberal Studies (SOLS) at UPES engages with these issues by drawing on the complementarities of various disciplines. This enables students to identify and anticipate complex transformations and ideate ways for resolutions. SOLS offers undergraduate and postgraduate programs in Economics, Psychology, Political Science, History, Literature, and Media and Mass Communications. The school positions itself around seven cross-cutting cluster areas of citizenship, education, environment, health, gender, technology, and urbanisation.

The SOLS faculty, trained at the top universities such as the University of Cambridge, Cornell University, the National University of Singapore and Imperial College, London encourages an interactive classroom environment where students learn to question, engage, present empirically driven arguments, and articulate their ideas coherently. The learning process is augmented through lectures/masterclasses by internationally renowned visiting faculty from institutions such as the University of Oxford, MIT, Stanford University and Yale University. Students also pursue outreach with policymakers, reformers, and local changemakers for exposure to varied perspectives. The unique programs at SOLS attract students and practitioners from universities in France, Italy, and Sweden. Students can pursue semester exchange opportunities at the University of Bologna (Italy), the University of Gothenburg (Sweden), the University of Warsaw (Poland), Hankuk University of Foreign Studies (South Korea), and HEIP: School of International and Political Studies (France). The Semester Abroad program facilitates learning at the University of California, Berkeley campus.

Providing a learning ecosystem to facilitate thought experiments, SOLS houses a data lab, psychology lab, writing praxis lab, archival ideation lab and a world-class podcast studio. SOLS seeks to push the pedagogical boundaries by introducing innovative curriculums balancing theory and praxis. With our focus on Connecting to the Neighbourhood, we encourage our students to apply their classroom learnings to their surroundings. SOLS students operate in a multidisciplinary milieu with colleagues from six other UPES schools pursuing learning in Engineering, Computer Science, Design, Management, Law, and Health Sciences. The school facilitates internships, and fellowships for its students to gain firsthand exposure. This applied field-based approach trains students to ideate and work towards creating value in the real world. At SOLS, students are trained to influence tomorrow by assuming roles in industries as diverse as Government, NGO, Consulting, Consumer Durables, Internet, and Media and join the likes of Steve Jobs (Apple), Susan Wojcicki (YouTube) and Howard Schultz (Starbucks) – all CEOs who had Liberal Arts training.

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