College of Liberal Arts and Sciences


The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (CLAS) advances the mission of the university by cultivating academic programs of excellence in the humanities, social sciences, and STEM disciplines; fostering a culture of scholarship among faculty and students; and preparing students for advanced study, civic engagement, vocational success, and a well-lived life.

The college includes eight academic departments; several special programs, centers, and institutes; and nearly 100 full-time faculty. CLAS offers a wide range of major and minor undergraduate degree programs, and houses graduate programs in applied statistics and analytics, biotechnology, English, and teaching English to speakers of other languages (TESOL). CLAS also offers many of the courses in the university’s General Education program and numerous discipline-specific student honor societies, and oversees the ZU Media program, which includes the student newspaper, student magazine, student television news program, and campus radio station. 

The Center for Research in Science

The Center for Research in Science (CRIS) serves the general community by promoting research that encompasses and extends the scope of scientific studies to address the inseparable relationship between science and culture, its role in a classical liberal arts education, and the dialogue between faith and reason.

The Math Center

The Math Center provides additional opportunities for APU students who need assistance at all levels of mathematics and physics. Student tutors (primarily APU mathematics majors) are on site for free walk-in tutoring from 2-8 p.m., Monday-Thursday, throughout each semester. The Math Center provides an excellent environment for math and physics learners to develop and practice their skills.

American Language and Culture Institute (ALCI)

The American Language and Culture Institute team administers and teaches extensive English language and cultural programs, including tutoring and mentoring, to all international students for whom English is a second language. International students will acquire all the necessary skills to function and compete within the American university environment. ALCI also offers opportunities for American and international students to develop leadership and cross-cultural skills (for more information, see the Admissions Policies section of this catalog).

Ethnic Studies Program

The Ethnic Studies program enhances students’ understanding of the experiences of U.S. immigrant populations and communities of color, along with their sensitivity to issues of race, ethnicity, and social class. The program also enables students to analyze contemporary social problems that affect these populations and to evaluate public policy related to the areas of immigration, education, criminal justice, health care, and economic development.

Humanities Program

The Humanities program is supported by five interdisciplinary seminars in the subject areas of aesthetics, great ideas, great works, literary masterpieces, and Christian classics. These seminars are housed in CLAS and supported by faculty within the Department of History and Political Science and the Department of English, with participation by faculty within the College of the Arts and the School of Theology.

Interdisciplinary Studies Program

The Interdisciplinary Studies program is an individualized academic program that crosses diverse fields of study. This program allows students whose vocational or intellectual goals do not lead them into a pre-existing APU major the opportunity to explore many different disciplines, gleaning important perspectives, knowledge, and skills while working towards a singular degree.  As part of the program, students will benefit from guidance in exploring and discerning vocational calling for themselves and others. Ultimately the program allows students to design a major around multiple interests and with a core of vocational exploration and development that helps them to identify their vocational calling and prepare for vocations that cross disciplinary boundaries.

Liberal Studies/Undergraduate Education K-8

The Liberal Studies program equips future teachers and helps them cultivate a Christian perspective of teaching by promoting an understanding of all students, emphasizing knowledge of subject matter, and cultivating awareness of cultural diversity in the teaching profession through coursework and experiences in surrounding school districts. The curriculum also exposes students to the learning methodologies promoted by the Common Core curricular program.



Jennifer E. Walsh, Ph.D., Professor of Political Science

Associate Deans

Denise Ferguson, Ph.D., Professor of Communication Studies

Theodore Szeto, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Mathematics