The Faculty of Arts is the largest in the University of Colombo in terms of student enrolment. The faculty has nine academic Departments and several teaching Units offering courses in the field of Social Sciences. Apart from undergraduate BA courses, several Departments offer courses for Diploma, Masters and Ph.D degrees. Many students who successfully complete Special BA Degrees, eventually register for postgraduate degree programs offered by the Faculty.
The Faculty of Arts has responded in various ways to the challenges and problems of higher education and employment. The introduction of the Course Unit System in 1998 was a major step towards offering greater flexibility to students in terms of selection of courses, their duration, new methods of teaching, learning and evaluation. The establishment of a Student Computer Unit and Computer Teaching Unit within the Faculty has enabled students to become computer literate – an essential skill in the economic and academic climate of today — within a short period of time. Many students specializing in subjects such as geography, economics and sociology also take computer applications as a regular course unit.
The English Language Teaching Unit (ELTU) which is part of the Department of English, provides undergraduates with a working knowledge of English through its Proficiency Courses in English. There cannot be any dispute that a working knowledge of English offers the student a distinct advantage to society today.