The Top 15 Best Liberal Arts Colleges in California

Liberal arts! What is Liberal art? is the first expression people get on hearing the course for the first time. Unlike other art majors, liberal art is based on rational thinking and the ability to solve complex problems. In this article, we have made available the top 15 best liberal arts colleges in California to ease your search for the top-notch Best Liberal Arts Colleges in California.

To be more elaborate, Liberal art is an area of study based on rational thinking, and it includes the areas of social, and physical sciences, humanities, and mathematics. Also, liberal arts education promotes the development of analytical skills and critical thinking, the ability to resolve complex problems, and an understanding of morality and ethics, as well as a desire to continue learning.

Furthermore, in this article, we are going to be listing the importance of liberal arts, and why attending liberal arts colleges in California is a good idea. Kindly read carefully to get the full detail.

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The Top 15 Best Liberal Arts Colleges in California

What Are Liberal Art Schools?

A liberal arts institution of higher education liberal arts college is a college with an emphasis on undergraduate study in sciences and liberal arts. Such colleges aim to impact a broad knowledge and develop intellectual capacities, in contrast to a vocational, professional, or technical curriculum. Students in a liberal arts college commonly major in a particular discipline while obtaining exposure to a wide range of academic subjects, including the traditional humanities and sciences subjects taught in liberal arts. Although it draws on European precursors, the liberal arts college is strongly attributed to American higher education, and most liberal arts schools around the world draw explicitly on the American model.

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Importance Of Liberal Art

The liberal arts help provide a fuller, more global perspective on almost everything, including socio-political understandings that are part of modern discourse. A background in liberal arts also improves reasoning, critical thinking, inquiry, and communication skills. The liberal arts offer context for comprehending modern society, which enables us both to appreciate and improve the world we live in.

Also, It’s actually the best way to discuss a field of study that is vast by its very nature. We talk about big ideas like creativity, ethics, critical thinking, communication, and problem-solving because that’s what the liberal arts are all about.

Why Attend Liberal Arts Colleges?

One apparent reason to choose a liberal arts school is to ensure that the focus is on learning, as contradicted to training for a future career. That’s not to say that graduates don’t go on to become professionals they certainly do. However, a liberal arts student’s time spent in college is more directed toward preparing for life, as opposed to work, with the belief that their skills will translate into a lots of career paths.

However, others may choose a liberal arts college just because they don’t want what they see as a normal college experience. Greek and Athletics life tends to be much fewer scenes at liberal arts colleges, which some students prefer.

Nonetheless, if you know a liberal arts college is right for you, you still have to discover the right one for you. To get you started, we have provided a list of the best liberal arts colleges in California. One might be your perfect fit.

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What Jobs Are Available for Liberal Art

Below is a list of great jobs for liberal arts graduates. The list is put together with examples cited on college websites, as well as job boards, and offers an image of available opportunities:

  • Advertising representative
  • Archivist
  • Artist
  • Events director
  • Financial analyst
  • Graphic designer
  • Human resources specialist
  • Journalist
  • Marketing specialist
  • Public relations specialist
  • Project manager
  • Research analyst
  • Social worker
  • Statistician
  • Teacher
  • Technical writer
  • Web developer
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Top 15 Best Liberal Arts Colleges in California

#1. Pomona College (Claremont, CA)

Pomona is widely deemed not only the best liberal arts college in California but among the best colleges in the entire world. Also, the school shows off a very close-knit campus community where the lines between learning and living are often blurred. True to this statement, 94 percent of students live on campus all four years, and the majority of lecturers also live less than 5 miles from school.

Also, the final member of the Claremont Consortium on this list, Pomona students can choose from over 250 clubs and more than 1500 classes at any of the five schools at Pomona. There is no shortage of opportunities for the driven student.

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#2. Claremont McKenna College (Claremont, CA)

Another college in the Claremont Consortium, Claremont McKennaat at a tucked-away, tree-lined campus 30 miles east of LA. Practicing “need-blind” admission, Claremont McKenna captivates a highly diverse, and highly accomplished student body.  

Also, One of Claremont McKenna’s most thrilling initiatives is its Center for Global Education. As a college committed to evolving global leaders, the CMU Center for Global Education offers hundreds of alternatives to engage in diverse study opportunities. One of the Center’s programs, known simply as “The Washington Program,” enables students to step into our nation’s capital for a semester while also engaging in independent study, and learning at institutions like the National Library and the Pentagon.

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#3. Harvey Mudd College (Claremont, CA)

Every single school in the Claremont Consortium has its personality, with Harvey Mudd best interpreted as the “tinkerer.” Harvey Mudd prides itself on developing students to be creators, thinkers, and makers. To this end, Harvey Mudd is constructing a new, the McGregor Computer Science Center, a state-of-the-art building, a 36,000 square-foot construction complete with classrooms and advanced facilities for the Computer Science department. 

It’s not all work at Harvey Mudd. Mudders are fun, quirky, and, just like students at Scripps and Pitzer, engaged in community and social events put on by all colleges within the Claremont Consortium.

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#4. Pitzer College (Claremont, CA)

Next on our list is Pitzer College in Claremont, a unique liberal arts college priding itself on readying students to enter the world as socially credible global citizens. To this end, Pitzer faculty and students are known for community involvement, with the student body volunteering collectively about 100,000 service hours each year.   

Pitzer is well-known as one of the Claremont schools, a combination of five liberal arts colleges among the world’s highest-ranked schools. Unsurprisingly, every single Claremont College is on our list of best liberal arts colleges in California.

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#5. Soka University of America (Aliso Viejo, CA)

Few schools in America have risen as rapidly in status as the Soka University of America. Only in existence for about 20 years, considered very young in the timeline of colleges and universities, Soka has already attained an endowment of over 1 billion US dollars and a top-30 ranking nationwide in the best liberal arts colleges category by US News. 

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What makes the Soka experience unique for their students? Soka is a university teaching global values and experiences to its students. To this end, all Soka students are obliged to participate in a study-abroad program to graduate. This semester-abroad experience takes place in the junior year at no extra cost to the student normally-paid tuition. Destinations available for study-abroad opportunities include France, China, Japan, and Spain.

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#6. Scripps College (Claremont, CA)

The only-female school in the Claremont Consortium, Scripps College offers a distinct experience for women seeking an amazing liberal arts education. Scripps is one of the top-ranked residential women’s liberal arts colleges in the nation by various publications. Though the whole student body at Scripps is female, demographics showcase exceptional diversity, with over 40% of students being POC and 5% of students traveling internationally to come to Scripps. 

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#7. Occidental College (Los Angeles, CA)

Number 7 on our list is Occidental College, a campus tucked in the hills of the LA Eagle Rock community. Occidental is a modern campus, with preserved historic buildings, complete with state-of-the-art facilities, and an unbeatable setting in one of the world’s active metropolitan areas.

One of Occidental’s initiatives is the Kahne United Nations Program. In this discipline, students move for a semester to New York City to participate in internships at United Nations agencies and other related NGOs. For students interested in outstanding diplomacy opportunities, this particular program represents an opportunity unrivaled by most other liberal arts colleges in California.

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#8. Thomas Aquinas College (Santa Paula, CA)

The following school on this list, Thomas Aquinas College, is a remarkable institution with an unusual twist: there are no minors or majors at Thomas Aquinas! 

Thomas Aquinas eschews traditional notions of college minors and majors in favor of the “Great Books” approach, an educational method where textbooks are replaced by standard works of literature. The philosophy behind this is simple: Thomas Aquinas wants to teach students with primary source material from the extraordinary minds instead of secondary source summaries.

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#9. Whittier College (Whittier, CA)

Next on the list is Whittier College, a private liberal arts college of about 1,700 students in Southern California. Ranked among the top 100 best liberal arts colleges nationwide by Washington, Whittier is an excellent choice for a student seeking a tightly-knit, primarily undergraduate experience with not only difficult academics but also consistently and incredible and sunny weather.

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#10. Westmont College (Santa Barbara, CA)

Westmont College in sunny Santa Barbara, CA is a non-denominational Christian liberal arts college with a mission to establish faithful leaders and thoughtful scholars.

Also, Westmont offers over 25 liberal arts majors, with marketing and business being two of the most popular. In addition to on-campus programs, west Westmont also provides various semester-long off-campus programs in several diverse locations, including Costa Rica, Israel, and Washington DC.

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#11. Marymount California University

Marymount is a Catholic university in Rancho Palos Verdes, California. Founded by the Religious of the Sacred Heart of Mary (RHSM), the university awards bachelor’s, associate, and graduate degrees. Also, the institution is accredited by the University Commission and WASC Senior College.

Marymount California University was accredited by WASC Senior College and University Commission. Marymount California University offers the following:

  • Associate in Arts
  • Associate in Science
  • Bachelor of Arts
  • Bachelor of Science
  • Master of Business Administration
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#12. Providence Christian College

Providence Christian College is a private Christian liberal arts college in Pasadena, California. Established in 2005, it is an independent Reformed college with no formal denominational ties. The college offers only one program, a bachelor’s degree in Liberal Studies.

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#13. Deep Springs College

Deep Springs College is a private two-year college in Deep Springs, California. With less than 30 students at any given time, the college is part of the smallest institutions of higher education in the United States. Also, after finishing two years at Deep Springs, students may choose to receive an associate degree, though this seldom happens in practice as the objective is that they will transfer to another school to finalize their four-year degree.

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#14. Mills College

Mills College is a women’s private liberal arts college in Oakland, California. Also, it’s an undergraduate women’s college for gender non-binary women students with graduate programs for students of all genders. Mills was established as the Young ladies Seminary in 1852 in Benicia, California; it was relocated to Oakland in the year 1871 and became the first women’s college west of the Rockies. In the year 2014, Mills became the first single-sex college in the US to adopt an admission policy welcoming transgender students.

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#15. Biola University

Biola University is a private Christian university in La Mirada, California. Founded in 1908 as the Bible Institute of Los Angeles. It has over 140 programs of study in nine schools offering master’s, bachelor’s, and doctoral degrees. Also, the largest annual missions conference, the university hosts the annual Missions Conference and the second-largest missions conference in the world. It has also played an important role in the development of intelligent designs.

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Conclusion

Liberal arts are increasingly important in the changing job market, with employers choosing to hire liberal arts professionals because of their ability to handle complex circumstances and solve problems with ease. Also, liberal art is a good career prospect to venture into as they are well paid.

Nevertheless, we are always here to get your feedback and give answers to your questions. Our readers and the information we give are our top priority.

FAQs on Top 15 Best Liberal Arts Colleges in California

What is the benefit of going to a liberal arts college?

A liberal arts degree is generally meant to prepare students for a variety of career paths versus a specific career path.

Are liberal arts colleges worth it?

Despite these drops, a recent report found that 80% of employers want all students to study the liberal arts and sciences. Moreover, the skills gained from a liberal arts education consistently rank among the most in-demand skills for the future. Clearly, a liberal arts education holds value in today’s job market.

What major are liberal arts?

A liberal arts degree includes the study of history, literature, writing, philosophy, sociology, psychology, creative arts, and more.

How Many Liberal Art Colleges are they in California?

There are 21 liberal arts colleges located throughout California (2 public colleges and 19 private colleges), serving 39,285 students

What is the value of a liberal arts education?

A liberal arts education is intended to expand the capacity of the mind to think critically and analyze information effectively. It develops and strengthens the brain to think within and across all disciplines so that it may serve the individual over a lifetime

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