School of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Faculty

Laurie P. Dishman, Ph.D., Dean

Lisa M. Cobb, DA, Associate Dean

Kimberly G. Atwood, MS

C. Rick Bell, MA

Danny L. Bryan, MS

W. Russell Cheatham, Ph.D.

Mark R. Cheathem, Ph.D.

Chris Fuller, Ph.D.

Kevin Gammon, Ph.D.

Stuart E. Harris, DA

Fred E. Heifner, Jr., Th.D.

Natalie Inman, Ph.D.

John P. Markert, Jr., Ph.D.

Robert Nichols, Jr., Ph.D.

Wilbur L. Peterson, Ph.D.

Sarah Sewell Pierce, Ph.D.

Michael Rex, Ph.D.

Catherine M. Smith, Ph.D.

Nathaniel S. Smith, MA

Deborah Van Damme-Zardeneta, MA, MA

Mission of the School of Liberal Arts and Sciences

In the School of Liberal Arts and Sciences, students are exposed to ideas and information that will form the cornerstone for learning. By the systematic study of the social sciences, humanities, mathematics and the natural sciences, students reflect upon the history of their culture; examine political, social, and ethical issues; and develop an understanding of the physical world. Through this process, students sharpen their powers of observation, analysis, and evaluation. In addition, the curriculum enables students to further develop communication skills, critical thinking skills, and decision-making abilities.

Degrees

Degrees offered include the Bachelor of Arts degree, with majors in Criminal Justice, English, Humanities and Social Sciences, and History; and the Bachelor of Science degree with majors in Biochemistry, Biology, Mathematics, and Psychology.

Goals

The goals of the School are to provide students with the following:

  • courses in the General Education Core (GEC);
  • knowledge and appreciation of classic and modern literature;
  • the ability to write effectively and clearly;
  • knowledge of mathematical concepts;
  • knowledge and appreciation of American culture;
  • knowledge of the dynamics of human society; and
  • knowledge of the physical and biological sciences.

The School meets its stated goals through specific courses that comprise the curriculum.

Professional Areas of Focus

Many of the graduates of Cumberland University will continue their education by going to graduate and professional schools. The courses required for admittance to some of the health profession and law schools are shown below. Students preparing for graduate or professional schools should obtain admission requirements for the schools of interest early in their undergraduate enrollment so that exact requirements can be met. Since admission to professional schools is highly competitive, students should be aware that satisfactory completion of pre-professional requirements does not guarantee admission to professional schools. Therefore, students are advised to plan undergraduate programs with some attention to possible alternative goals. A Health Professions Advisor will assist students in realistically evaluating their potential for admission to professional schools. Pre-professional students are encouraged to join the Pre-Health Professional Society, which has monthly speakers discussing the various health related professions. Pre-professional Internships are available to students to gain insight into the various medical professions.

Pre-Medical

Admission requirements for medical school vary from school to school, but most require one year of English composition (ENG 101, 102) one year of biology (BIO 111, 112) one year of physics (PHY 201, 202 or PHY 210, 211) two years of chemistry (CHEM 111, 112, 311, 312) and 52 hours of electives. These electives should provide a broad, cultural background and relate to medical preparation. These requirements can be met in a variety of programs which lead to an undergraduate degree. Even though the admission requirements can be completed in less than four years, it is rare for students to be accepted prior to the completion of an undergraduate degree. Students considered for admission should have a 3.5 overall grade point average (GPA). In addition, extracurricular activities and leadership roles are important. Volunteering or jobs in the health profession are highly recommended. The Medical College Admission Test (MCAT) is now taken on computer and offered 22 times a year. Students register for the MCAT online. The MCAT tests general knowledge of physics, general chemistry, biology, and organic chemistry. Admission to medical school is very competitive. Satisfactory completion of all pre-medical requirements does not guarantee admission to medical school.

Pre-Dental

Admission requirements for dental school vary; so it is recommended that a student obtain admission requirements from the Dental School of interest. The prerequisites for the University of Tennessee (UT) dental school include one year of biology (BIO 111, 112), one year of physics (PHY 201, 202 or PHY 210, 211), two years of chemistry (CHEM 111, 112, 311, 312), one year of mathematics (including one semester of calculus), one year of English (ENG 101, 102), one semester of biochemistry (BIO/CHEM 400) and one semester of microbiology (BIO 203). Even though these requirements can be completed in less than four years, it is rare for students to be accepted prior to the completion of an undergraduate degree. The four major factors influencing admission are academic performance, recommendations, DAT scores, and interview performance. Students considered for admission should have a 3.0 GPA or higher. In addition, extracurricular activities and volunteering or working in dental offices is highly recommended. The Dental Admissions Test (DAT) must be taken and application made to dental school approximately one year prior to expected entrance. A score of 15-19 is needed on the DAT for acceptance into most schools. Application to dental school can be made directly to the school or through the American Association of Dental Schools Application Service (AADSAS). Further information can be obtained from a Health Professions Advisor. Admission to dental school is very competitive. Satisfactory completion of all pre-dental requirements does not guarantee admission to dental school.

Pre-Pharmacy

Admission requirements for pharmacy school vary from school to school, but most require about 67 semester hours of required course work from an accredited institution. The pre-pharmacy curriculum at the University Of Tennessee (UT) requires 90 semester hours of course work. The required courses are 16 semester hours of chemistry (CHEM 111, 112, 311, 312), eight hours of biology (BIO 111, 112), eight hours of physics (PHY 201, 202 or 210, 211), six hours of English composition (ENG 101, 102), Speech (SPEE 220), Anatomy/Physiology (BIO 213, 214), Microbiology (BIO 203), Statistics (PSY 205), Calculus (MATH 121), Biochemistry (BIO/CHEM 400), Immunology (BIO 418), six hours of social science electives (psychology, sociology, economics, anthropology, political science), and six hours of humanities (literature, language, history, philosophy). One year of American History at the high school or college level is required for UT admission. Some students choose to complete the above requirements in a minimum period of time while others apply for admission following the completion of an undergraduate degree. A grade of C or above must be achieved for each pre-pharmacy course and an overall GPA of 2.5 or higher is required. In addition, the Pharmacy College Admission Test (PCAT) is required by most schools. The PCAT is offered four times a year. PCAT information and applications can be obtained from a Health Professions Advisor. Admission to pharmacy school is very competitive. Satisfactory completion of all pre-pharmacy requirements does not guarantee admission to pharmacy school.

Pre-Veterinary Medicine

The admission requirements for Veterinary Medicine can vary from school to school; so it is recommended that a student obtain admission requirements from the veterinary school of interest. There is only one College of Veterinary Medicine in Tennessee. The College of Veterinary Medicine at UT, Knoxville, requires the following pre-veterinary courses: six semester hours of English composition (ENG 101, 102), 18 semester hours of humanities and social sciences (literature, speech, music, art, philosophy, religion, language, history, economics, anthropology, political science, psychology, sociology, and/or geography), eight semester hours of physics (PHY 201, 202 or PHY 210, 211), eight semester hours of general chemistry (CHEM 111, 112), eight semester hours of organic chemistry (CHEM 311, 312), four semester hours of biochemistry (CHEM 400), eight semester hours of biology (BIO 111, 112), genetics (BIO 302), and cellular biology (BIO 416). Students apply to veterinary medical school through the Veterinary Medical College Application Service (VMCAS), which provides for the collection, processing, verification and distribution of applicant data to participating colleges. The Graduate Record Exam (GRE) is required for admission. Acceptance into is very competitive. Satisfactory completion of all requirements does not guarantee admission to veterinary school.

Pre-Physical Therapy

Programs are different for different schools; so students are encouraged to obtain admission information from the schools that they are interested in attending. A planned course of study may consist of the courses outlined below (required for the Physical Therapy program at UT Memphis). A minimum of 60 semester hours must be completed prior to enrollment including the following courses: Biology, eight semester hours (BIO 111, 112); Chemistry, eight semester hours (CHEM 111, 112); Physics, eight semester hours (PHY 201, 202 or PHY 210, 211); Human Physiology, eight semester hours (BIO 213, 214); English, six semester hours (ENG 101, 102); Mathematics, four semester hours (can be algebra, trigonometry, and/or calculus); Psychology, six semester hours (must include general); Social Sciences/Humanities, 12 semester hours (psychology, sociology, economics, anthropology, political science, literature, language, history, philosophy); and Statistics, three semester hours (PSY 205). Acceptance into Physical Therapy School is very competitive. A cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher is often required. In addition, extra curricular activities and leadership roles are important. Volunteering or physical therapy related jobs are highly recommended. Satisfactory completion of all pre-physical therapy requirements does not guarantee admission to physical therapy school.

Pre-Dental Hygiene

The admission requirements vary from school to school; so it is important to obtain admission requirements for the school year you are interested in attending. One example of course requirement (for the Dental Hygiene program at UT, Memphis) requires 64 semester hours of coursework. The following courses are required for admission: English, nine semester hours (ENG 101, 102, and either ENG 215 or 216); Speech, three semester hours (SPEE 220); Psychology, six semester hours: Sociology, six semester hours; General Biology, four semester hours (BIO 111); Microbiology, four semester hours (BIO 203); Anatomy and Physiology, eight semester hours (BIO 213, 214); General Chemistry, eight semester hours (CHEM 111, 112); and 16 semester hours of electives. Admission to dental hygiene school is very competitive. Satisfactory completion of all requirements does not guarantee admission to dental hygiene school.

Pre-Law Study

Cumberland University has a long and rich heritage as a center of legal study. From 1847, just five years after it’s founding, until 1961, Cumberland was the home of one of the premier law schools in the nation. Many state governors and members of Congress, as well as two Justices of the U.S. Supreme Court were graduates of the Cumberland Law School.

This commitment to quality legal education continues today as we prepare undergraduates for admission and successful work at some of the top law schools in the country. Most law schools recommend a broad course of study in preparation for law school. All Cumberland University students interested in law school have the opportunity of working with Cumberland University’s pre-law advisor, who is a full-time faculty member. Together they select a major which reflects the student’s personal interests and which provides challenging course work to prepare the student to compete successfully in law school. Emphasis is on courses which hone the student’s writing skills, analytical thinking and verbal communication. In addition, membership in ’s Pre-Law Society is encouraged for all students interested in law school.