Undergraduate Pathway Program (UPP): Fine Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences

The College of Fine Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences (FAHSS) at UMass Lowell connects you globally and locally, and challenges you with analytical reading, critical thinking, and problem solving.

Your direct pathway to UMass Lowell



Two to three semesters

Semester start dates

Summer: May 2017

Fall: September 2017

Spring: January 2018


The Art Major at UMass Lowell is designed to develop the artistic and aesthetic talents of students through a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) program that meets the National Association of Schools of Art and Design accreditation requirements. A discriminating appreciation of art and the technical knowledge for succeeding as educated artists is the goal. The UMass Lowell Art Major provides students the opportunity to prepare for careers in the applied art fields (animation, graphic design, interactive-media, and web design), the fine arts (including painting, photography, printmaking and sculpture), and/or museum research and gallery work and further study at the graduate level.

    • Criminal Justice
      • Corrections
      • Information & Technology
      • Police
      • Research & Evaluation
      • Violence

Criminal Justice program seeks to provide students with a comprehensive knowledge of the criminal justice system and is committed to ensuring that students receive the benefits of a well-rounded liberal arts education. The program not only familiarizes students with the correlations of crime and the workings of the criminal justice system, but also teaches students how to apply this knowledge to related social problems and changing situations. This includes the development of critical thinking, communication skills, and the ability to conceptualize ideas.

The Bachelor of Liberal Arts program is sponsored by the Department of Cultural Studies and offers students in the humanities and social sciences the opportunity to center their studies on two disciplines in the humanities and social sciences. Resulting in the degree, the Bachelor of Liberal Arts, the program addresses the needs of several sizeable student constituencies. It appeals to students who are undecided about a major, but who know they want a broad-based liberal arts education.

    • English
      • Literature
      • Creative Writing
      • Journalism and Professional Writing
      • Theatre Arts

The Department of English provides all majors with a historical foundation in British and American literary traditions, as well as a thorough background in various interpretive approaches. In addition to fulfilling the University's General Education requirements, majors choose one of four concentrations.

A major in history provides a solid background for students who go on to enter government service, politics, law, teaching or business. Students can elect a general major in History, or they can choose to specialize in certain fields such as American or European history.

The music business program combines a traditional music curriculum with courses and experiences related to the music industry. The program focuses on management, marketing, sales, publishing, retailing, and record and concert promotion and prepares graduates knowledgeable in all aspects of the music industry. Though prospective music business students enroll in courses specific for their specialization in the freshman year.

Music performance is for those students who wish to pursue careers as professional performing musicians. They can pursue either instrumental or vocal curricula options. The Music Department faculty members are active, practicing musical performers who bring those experiences to the classroom. Students are required to perform in instrumental and vocal groups and are encouraged to practice their art in various settings both in and outside the University.

Music Studies is focused on musicianship, performance, and pedagogy. The extensive in-depth school and community-based teaching experiences are embedded from freshman year through graduation. The emphasis on learner-centered pedagogies, working with diverse student populations, innovative methods infusing technology and creativity prepares students for advanced study in school-based music education, studio teaching, community arts, and music outreach programs.

The Peace and Conflict Studies program provides students with knowledge of the key issues, research, and theories in the important and emerging field of Peace and Conflict Studies. The major in Peace and Conflict Studies is focused on addressing the central questions:
- What are the causes and conditions which generate and sustain violent conflict?
- What are the principles and methods for the resolution of violent conflict?
- What are the norms, practices and institutions for building peace?
There are many approaches to understanding these core questions. Therefore, the curriculum is inter-disciplinary, combining courses from Cultural Studies, Criminal Justice, History, Political Science, and Sociology, among other disciplines. Students take a seminar that helps them integrate the learning from their electives to address the central questions of the field. Students may study abroad at partner universities to gain a global perspective. Students can also engage in field work or internships for academic credit.

Students who study philosophy develop important skills and methods of approaching problems that are applicable in many future endeavors. A philosophy major is valuable to all who question the reasons for things as they are, to those who seek a deeper understanding of what they are doing and their purpose for doing it, and to those who recognize the validity of Socrates- assertion that the 'unexamined life is not worth living.' Students can take courses in the history of philosophy and philosophical movements; political, mathematical and scientific philosophies; metaphysics; linguistics and aesthetics. Students will learn how to analyze, reason, deduct and apply persuasive arguments in a disciplined and systematic way while developing their oral and written communication skills.

The major in political science is designed to provide knowledge of the nature of politics and government on the local, state, national, and international levels and of the functions and theories of the state. The courses enable students to develop an understanding of the political process, and an ability to analyze political systems, relationships, and problems. The major affords excellent preparation for graduate education, law school, public administration, public service, social science teaching and, most importantly, intelligent citizenship.Core offerings on American Politics and Policy have been augmented by others on comparative policies of countries ranging from Eastern Europe to Southeast Asia to Southern Africa. The department also offers specialized courses related to gender and citizenship, political economy, race and ethnicity, and public policy. In addition to traditional courses in political thought, recent course offerings have included work in state theory, feminist political theory, current theoretical conflicts in constitutional interpretation, and the politics of arts and culture.

Psychology has many specialties and the UMass Lowell Psychology Department offers courses in several of them, including: experimental, developmental, social, community, personality and clinical psychology. The program combines theoretical study and scientific research methods with practical application through course work, field studies, community involvement, volunteerism and supervised independent research. The Psychology program prepares students for careers in areas including social services, mental health, education, research and business.

Sociologists study many different subjects: race and ethnicity, social policy, gender and sexuality, family and kinship, the nature of industrial capitalism, the effect of technology on modern society and interpersonal relationships. These are just a few of the many areas sociologists are interested in understanding. What draws these different areas together is the emphasis on understanding social life, both in our own society and cross-culturally. The sociology major offers students the opportunity to learn about our social world. Courses cover a wide range of fields. As part of their program, students are encouraged to work in the Lowell community. Many students complete corporate or agency internships in which they work within a field setting to gain needed job experience.

Fine Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences sample course list

UPP program components

UPP credit hours applied to degree: 29 / Remaining credit hours to complete degree program: 91

Semester 1 Course title Credits

NAV 101

Navigating the Undergraduate Pathway



College Writing A ESL



Quantitative Reasoning



Introduction to Political Science



Supplemental Instruction



Total credits


Semester 2 Course title Credits


College Writing I



Life Science plus Lab



Introduction to Sociology



Supplemental Instruction



Total credits


Semester 3 Course title Credits


College Writing II



Science plus Lab



General Psychology



Art Appreciation



Supplemental Instruction



Total credits



Total program credits


Program information

Progression requirements:

  • Overall GPA of 2.5
  • No grade below C
  • Minimum number of credits: 30
  • Students must successfully complete College Writing II ESL in order to matriculate to sophomore year with UML.

Program notes:

  • Placement in Math and College Writing courses is determined by the University's Math and English writing assessments. If students do not place into the math or writing course, an additional semester may be necessary.
  • Students in UPP: 3 Semesters with English start with a semester of Academic English and then proceed into the same course of study as students in UPP: 3 Semesters
Entry to second year of your UMass Lowell College of FAHSS degree program

Bachelor of Arts

    • American Studies
    • Criminal Justice
    • Economics
    • English

      - Creative Writing

      - Journalism & Professional Writing

      - Literature

      - Theatre Arts

    • History

      - Art History

    • Modern Languages
    • Peace & Conflict Studies
    • Philosophy
    • Political Science
    • Psychology
    • Sociology

Bachelor of Fine Arts

    • Art & Design

      - Art

      - Graphic Design

Bachelor of Music

  • Music Business
  • Music Performance
  • Music Studies
  • Sound Recording Technology

Employment and career options

  • Civil Service
  • Communications
  • Counseling and Psychology
  • Criminal Justice
  • Cultural and Human Geography
  • Education
  • Finance
  • Forensic Investigation
  • Government
  • Healthcare
  • International Business
  • International Relations
  • Interpreting
  • Public Relations
  • Politics
  • Sales and Advertising
  • Theatre