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Start your next chapter with a part-time, evening graduate degree in the liberal arts.

Stanford’s Master of Liberal Arts Program (MLA) offers an extraordinary opportunity to pursue an interdisciplinary course of study in the liberal arts and earn your master’s degree at one of the world’s great centers of learning. Designed with busy adults in mind, this part-time graduate degree program holds classes in the evenings and offers a flexible academic schedule.

In the MLA program, students form a close-knit cohort who take courses taught by Stanford faculty. Areas of study include history of science, philosophy, literature, environmental studies, political science, history, and more. Students will hone their ability to write persuasively and creatively, develop persuasive arguments, conduct original research, and integrate thinking from multiple disciplines. For many students, these are ends in themselves. For others, these skills serve them well in their professional lives.

MLA applications are accepted from September through January, with classes beginning in September of the following academic year. For more information on the program and admissions details, please visit: mla.stanford.edu. Information sessions are held throughout the year; visit MLA Admissions for details and to RSVP for a session.

Taking Stanford Continuing Studies courses can be excellent preparation for applying to the MLA program. Each quarter, the MLA program recommends courses that are similar in subject and format to seminars you would find in MLA study.


Speaker, Statesman, and Philosopher: Marcus Tullius Cicero

Dante at 700: His World, Works, and Legacy

A History of Reproductive Rights in the United States

Dickens's Masterpiece: David Copperfield

The Poetry of Emily Dickinson

Dante's “Paradiso": A 700th-Anniversary Exploration of The Divine Comedy

“Education is forever. You don’t have to get an undergraduate degree and be done. You have to figure out what matters to you and pursue it throughout your life. For me, that’s education.” Ken, MLA 2020.

“I didn’t think the MLA program would be so profoundly life-changing as it turned out to be. I changed the course of my career as a result.” Lisa, MLA 2015.