Academics at Bard
Bard is redefining what it means to be a liberal arts institution by expanding its mission beyond undergraduate education, to include secondary school and graduate programs. The curricula of all Bard programs are rooted in an allegiance to free speech, civility, dissent, and the traditions of scientific and speculative inquiry. Bard seeks to inspire disciplined skepticism and critical thinking.
Undergraduate academics at Bard focus on giving students a strong scholarly foundation with our rigorous core curriculum, then encouraging them to explore individual academic interests. The College seeks to engender in every student a wide curiosity and a profound love of learning. Close contact with scholars who are teachers but also active in their disciplines is a constant, and the level of academic discourse in the classroom is high. Bard students choose from among nearly 50 programs in four academic divisions—Arts
; Languages and Literature
; Science, Mathematics, and Computing
; and Social Studies
—as well as Interdivisional Programs and Concentrations
Bard’s graduate programs give students the tools to shape the future of their professions. Expert faculty craft innovative curricula designed to challenge emerging leaders. More than 600 students are seeking graduate degrees in Bard programs. These include programs in curatorial studies, economic theory and policy, sustainable business, and environmental policy; M.Music, M.F.A., and M.A.T. degrees at multiple campuses; and the M.A., M.Phil., and Ph.D. in the decorative arts, design history, and material culture. Bard undergraduates may also pursue dual-degree options
, seeking a second bachelor’s degree or pursuing a master’s in conjunction with their undergraduate program.
High Schools and Early Colleges
Colleges of the liberal arts have a great opportunity to play a role in secondary education and provide challenging undergraduate programs for motivated younger students. Bard has several initiatives for young scholars, including Bard College at Simon’s Rock
, which enables exceptional students to begin college immediately after the 10th or 11th grade; Bard High School Early Colleges
, where students earn a high school diploma and an A.A. degree in four years; and Bard Early College in New Orleans
, which offers free, college credit–bearing courses in local high schools. The Bard Early College National Initiative
builds on the success of Bard's innovative early college programming, expanding access to rigorous opportunities in the liberal arts for public high school students across the country.