Study the Humanities, an initiative of the National Humanities Alliance Foundation, serves to strengthen humanities recruitment efforts across the country. There are three key components of the initiative: 

  • Researching effective recruitment strategies and developing resources that showcase the range of approaches
  • Aggregating existing data and articles into a toolkit that presents six arguments for studying the humanities as an undergraduate 
  • Convening the community of faculty and administrators committed to attracting more undergraduates to the humanities

Study the Humanities is supported by the Mellon Foundation. 

Researching Recruitment Strategies

We are researching the field of undergraduate humanities recruitment to identify and share a variety of effective strategies.

In 2019, we launched the Humanities Recruitment Survey (HRS), a broad survey of the higher education humanities community. The first HRS report focuses on challenges to attracting students to the humanities and audiences faculty and administrators are engaging to overcome those challenges. 

Building off of this research, we are investigating strategies discovered through the survey and additional outreach efforts and developing resources that provide an overview of the types of strategies and the range of efforts within them. 

In addition, we are conducting research to document the impact of particular initiatives on student perceptions and behaviors concerning the humanities. This research will contribute to the humanities community's understanding of which strategies are most effective and why. If you are interested in partnering with us to better understand the impact of your initiative, please email our higher education research manager, Younger Oliver, at [email protected]


Explore Strategies

Study the Humanities Toolkit

The Study the Humanities Toolkit makes the case for studying the humanities as an undergraduate using data compiled from a wide range of sources. It presents six arguments, each of which is accompanied by a brief essay, related articles, talking points, and supporting evidence packaged into charts, quotes, data points, and profiles.  

We invite you to use the data in the toolkit to create print and electronic materials that will address the audiences you are trying to reach, such as potential majors, parents, administrators, career counselors, or admissions offices.


Explore the Toolkit

Building Community

Our toolkit and research serve to support faculty and administrators around the country who are dedicated to attracting more undergraduates to the humanities. We convene this community of practice every March at the National Humanities Alliance's Annual Meeting in Washington D.C. to share challenges and opportunities on their campuses and workshop new strategies to take back to them. And we work with our members and partners in scholarly societies and higher ed institutions around the country to help connect constituents committed to this work through their conferences and events.


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