The College of Humanities and Social Sciences is a cornerstone of learning and research at George Mason University. Its mission is to provide high quality education for graduate and undergraduate students, to conduct relevant research across the humanities and social sciences, and to offer intellectual leadership to the community.
In fulfillment of its educational mission, the college offers challenging academic programs to students at all levels. The 20 programs at the undergraduate level provide students with a broad foundation of knowledge through emphasis on research, global awareness, leadership, technology, and writing. In addition to courses and special opportunities such as internships and study abroad, the college has programs to help them make a successful transition from college to career. The 27 programs at the graduate level give students opportunities for career advancement, professional training, personal fulfillment, and participation in research that has practical applications in today’s world.
The goal of the research mission of the college is to increase the fund of theoretical and applied knowledge across regional, national, and international spheres. It fulfills this mission by fostering internal and external collaborations and by promoting research activity as an important component of graduate and undergraduate education. The results of this scholarship enrich the lives of individuals, meet national and international research needs, and respond to global challenges and opportunities. In 2008-2009, the college had $16,074,866 in new awards and $17,719,616 in total research expenditures.
The college’s community mission is fulfilled by demonstrating intellectual leadership in the community. With different community partners, the college participates in innovative programs, service offerings, and strategic alliances that strengthen the public, private, and civic sectors. Each year, the faculty share their expertise in a variety of ways with many different audiences from students in the K-12 schools to retirees in the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI).
The college is composed of 11 departments, 11 major interdisciplinary programs, one college, and 10 research centers and has a distinguished faculty of over 400. Over the past years, the faculty have received numerous awards and prizes including the Nobel Memorial Prize, the Stockholm Prize, the Pulitzer Prize, the MacArthur fellowship, and the Guggenheim Fellowship, among others. It is also home to three university-wide programs for undergraduate students -- the Honors Program in General Education, Technology across the Curriculum, and the University Writing Center.