Welcome to the Department of Arts and Humanities at Teachers College, Columbia University.

The largest academic unit at the College, our Department prides itself upon its intellectual and artistic richness, its diversity, and its distinctive approaches to education. The Department consists of ten academic programs along with many subprograms nested within. Our major areas of scholarly inquiry are art, art administration, culture, dance, music, history, philosophy, applied linguistics, bilingualism, English and literacies, and social studies. These areas of research, practice, and instruction, collectively, address human wisdom, capacity, potential, and creativity. In today’s era, when technology pervades every area of life, these humanistic areas of study take on added importance: they call attention both to fundamental values in society and to forms of societal improvement.

In the Department, across our ten clusters of programs, we nurture educators, practitioners and researchers in and across disciplines for the present and for the future. Our faculty are world-renowned scholars who actively contribute to their respective fields of study, and they also are educators on the leading edge of practice. These qualities, among others, enable them to conduct and promote inquiry-based teaching and learning.  

Our students hail from all over the world and all quarters of life, some veteran professionals in teaching and service professions, and others novices. Their diverse backgrounds, coupled with the broad spectrum of expertise of our faculty, and the unparalleled cultural diversity of New York City writ large, form a uniquely stimulating learning environment. 

The Arts and Humanities Department, by virtue of its abundant offerings, provides a fertile ground for interdisciplinary research both in the U.S. and internationally; supports deep learning; and cultivates open-mindedness, creativity, and innovative spirits. 

The mission of the Department is to promote deep engagement with intellectual and creative ideas and to nurture learning leading to a broad, well-rounded knowledge-base fused with robust and usable skillsets that can directly contribute to making our world a thriving place to live and flourish.

ZhaoHong Han, Chair

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