l-r Dean Sara Sanders; Associate Deans Christine Getz, Cornelia Lang, Roland Racevskis, Christopher Cheatum, Joshua Weiner
l-r: Dean Sara Sanders; Associate Deans Christine Getz, Cornelia Lang, Roland Racevskis, Christopher Cheatum, Joshua Weiner


The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at the University of Iowa has a long and distinguished history.

Founded in 1900, our college is home to some of the leading programs in the world in the arts, humanities, and sciences, including the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, speech pathology and audiology, fine arts, social psychology, and space physics.

Our college is responsible for a number of firsts. It was the first to:

  • Completely design, assemble, and operate a spacecraft
  • Offer a university-sponsored program in creative writing
  • Accept creative work in lieu of academic theses from graduate students
  • Uncover the earth’s radiation belts
  • Discover the origin of the northern lights

CLAS faculty and students have been awarded over forty Pulitzer Prizes and over twenty Rhodes scholarships, in addition to numerous other awards and recognition for excellence.

In our day-to-day efforts, our college is driven by our core values and commitments. We aspire to foster and then build on a foundation of community, transparency, communication, equity, diversity, creativity, excellence, and humility.

Our 2021-2026 Strategic Plan works to regard all of these values as intimately connected and inseparable across its four pillars:

  • Research and Discovery
  • Student Success
  • Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
  • Public Engagement

We are committed to peer mentoring and to bringing awareness to the critical role that each of us plays in something that is larger than any one of us. The faculty, staff, and students of CLAS have individual expertise, interests, and perspectives, but as an academic learning community, our most impactful contributions arise from our work as a cohesive whole:

  • Staff who are integral to the student-success and research mission of the university
  • Faculty researchers and teachers who instruct students to learn and apply knowledge from new and innovative angles
  • Departmental and collegiate spaces that encourage equity and belonging
  • Students who graduate with writing, communication, and research skills through which they may align their personal, professional, and civic goals.

Through the strategic planning process, every five years, CLAS renews its commitment to its core values and to making sure that we are community-built and community-strong.