The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences is the center of the academic experience at the University of Iowa—where students and faculty are empowered to succeed. 

Established in 1900, CLAS is the largest of the 12 colleges at the University of Iowa, offering a wide variety of programs spanning the arts and humanities, writing and communication, natural and mathematical sciences, and social and behavioral sciences. Rooted in the practical and the classical, the instrumental and the essential, our college defies easy reduction. Our strength comes from our breadth and complexity, and the fact that our college has existed for over one-hundred and twenty years reflects its central importance. 

The college benefits nearly all undergraduate students through the CLAS Core General Education program. CLAS is home to world-class programs in writing, the arts, space physics, speech and hearing science, and more, and faculty who undertake groundbreaking research, innovative scholarship, and daring creative work.  

Each graduate of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences takes their passion, creativity, and critical thinking skills into diverse fields. Whether as scientists pushing boundaries, artists inspiring new perspectives, or communicators building bridges, our alumni leave their mark as original thinkers and engaged citizens of their communities and the world.

70

Undergraduate Majors

14,664

Undergraduate students

Fall 2023

1,738

Graduate students

Fall 2023

710

Faculty

Fall 2023

Welcome from the dean

Whether you're a student ready to embark on a transformative academic journey, or a faculty member seeking a vibrant and collaborative scholarly community, I am thrilled to welcome you to CLAS.  I have been a member of this community since 2003, and I remain amazed and blessed to be part of such a college that is leading in creativity and discovery as well as in the education of undergraduate and graduate students. 

At CLAS, we offer an unparalleled range of academic programs and opportunities for immersive learning and research. If you are a student, I’m confident you’ll find a community here that values your individual voice and fosters an engaging learning environment. With dedicated advisors and faculty mentors, you'll receive the support you need to achieve your academic and personal goals. It is a joy to witness your growth and learn from your unique perspectives.

For faculty, CLAS provides a stimulating environment that encourages intellectual curiosity, interdisciplinary collaboration, and cutting-edge research. I'm continually inspired by the dedication and passion of our faculty, and I'm honored to be a part of this exceptional community.  As a faculty member, the goal of the dean’s office is to support your career and work collaboratively with you to remove any barriers to your success.

No matter where you are on your journey, I invite you to explore all that CLAS has to offer. We're confident you'll find your place here and create a unique story that will shape your future.  And if you do come to Iowa, stop in the dean’s office and introduce yourself to us–we are excited to get to know you and why you choose to be a part of the CLAS community.

Dean Sara Sanders, exterior on the Pentacrest

Sara Sanders, PhD, MSW

Title/Position
Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (CLAS)
Professor

Events

100-Word Microstory Contest promotional image

100-Word Microstory Contest

Monday, July 15 to Friday, July 26, 2024 (all day)
Mark your calendar for our 100-Word Microstory Contest — a free online writing competition for a variety of age groups. You don’t have to be an Iowa Writers’ Workshop grad — or even have participated in a flash writing contest before — to join in the fun. Just create a story in 100 words or less that uses one of two specific writing prompts. We will announce the writing prompts here on Monday, July 15, 2024, at 9 a.m. CDT.
Alicia Wright, "The Making of a Literary Magazine" promotional image

Alicia Wright, "The Making of a Literary Magazine"

Monday, July 15, 2024 11:00am to 12:00pm
Phillips Hall
Alicia Wright presents the talk "The Making of a Literary Magazine" for the Iowa Summer Writing Festival's Eleventh Hour Lecture Series. Free and open to the public; all are welcome.

Live from Prairie Lights | Charles Holdefer reading - 'Ivan the Terrible Goes on a Family Picnic'

Monday, July 15, 2024 7:00pm
Prairie Lights Books
Charles Holdefer will read from his new collection of stories, Ivan the Terrible Goes on a Family Picnic. "Did the Russians invent baseball? Is there a connection between Babe Ruth’s cross-dressing and Gertrude Stein’s secret mission to New York? What does history tell us about what lies beyond heaven? From the American heartland to Hiroshima, to Paris, to shopping malls and caves with prehistoric art, Ivan the Terrible Goes on a Family Picnic is a wild ride across generations and frontiers of...
100-Word Microstory Contest promotional image

100-Word Microstory Contest

Tuesday, July 16 to Friday, July 26, 2024 (all day)
Mark your calendar for our 100-Word Microstory Contest — a free online writing competition for a variety of age groups. You don’t have to be an Iowa Writers’ Workshop grad — or even have participated in a flash writing contest before — to join in the fun. Just create a story in 100 words or less that uses one of two specific writing prompts. We will announce the writing prompts here on Monday, July 15, 2024, at 9 a.m. CDT.

REDCap Advanced Training

Tuesday, July 16, 2024 10:00am to 11:00am
Virtual
This is the fourth step in the REDCap training series. In this training, we will cover advanced features such as: • Importing data from csv • Ways to customize your data entry experience with form display logic • Making your forms more dynamic and personalized with context aware smart variables • Sending automated, conditional email alerts • Ensuring data is high quality by executing data quality rules, creating data missingness codes, and opening data queries • And more This training is a demo and not hands-on. After this training, you will have an advanced understanding of REDCap. Register by clicking the virtual event link above or by going here: https://redcap.link/icts_training
Charles Holdefer, "Your Family and Other Animals: Using Creatures in Your Writing" promotional image

Charles Holdefer, "Your Family and Other Animals: Using Creatures in Your Writing"

Tuesday, July 16, 2024 11:00am to 12:00pm
Phillips Hall
Charles Holdefer presents the talk "Your Family and Other Animals: Using Creatures in Your Writing" for the Iowa Summer Writing Festival's Eleventh Hour Lecture Series. Free and open to the public; all are welcome.
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Alumni and friends

No matter where you are, stay connected to CLAS and the University of Iowa. 

More than 174,000 living Hawkeye alumni have degrees conferred in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. We hope you'll stay connected to the college and your department—and consider getting involved.