The Core Curriculum focuses on the learning goals that form the core of a modern liberal arts education at a leading comprehensive 21st century public research university. Student progress in the Core is measured by the breadth of goals achieved, and a single course can fulfill multiple goals. Students exercise meaningful choice among courses - drawn from across multiple disciplines - specifically certified as meeting these goals.
NOTE: The Core Curriculum was revised by vote of the faculty in May 2018. The revised Core Curriculum will go into effect for the students entering Fall 2019. For the revised Core Curriculum learning goals pdf please click here. (402 KB)
Upon completion of the Core Curriculum STUDENTS WILL BE ABLE TO:
Students must take two degree credit-bearing courses that meet one or more of these goals.
- Analyze the degree to which forms of human difference shape a person's experiences of and perspectives on contemporary issues.
- Analyze a contemporary global issue from a multidisciplinary perspective.
- Analyze the relationship that science and technology have to a contemporary social issue.
- Analyze contemporary issues of social justice.
AREAS OF INQUIRY Natural Sciences [ NS] (6 credits)
Students must take two degree credit-bearing courses that meet one or both of these goals. Each course meets goal e.
- Understand and apply basic principles and concepts in the physical or biological sciences.
- Explain and be able to assess the relationship among assumptions, method, evidence, arguments, and theory in scientific analysis.
Social and Historical Analysis
Students must take two degree credit-bearing courses and meet both HST and SCL below, as follows:
Historical Analysis [HST] (3 credits)
Students must take one degree credit-bearing course that meets one or both of these goals (k and/or l).
k. Explain the development of some aspect of a society or culture over time.
l. Employ historical reasoning to study human endeavors, using appropriate assumptions, methods, evidence, and arguments.
Social Analysis [ SCL] (3 credits)
Students must take one additional degree credit-bearing course that meets one or both of these goals (m and/or n).
m. Understand different theories about human culture, social identity, economic entities, political systems, and other forms of social organization.
n. Employ tools of social scientific reasoning to study particular questions or situations, using appropriate assumptions, methods, evidence, and arguments.
Arts and the Humanities [AH] (6 credits)
Students must take two degree credit-bearing courses and meet at least two of these goals.
o. Examine critically philosophical and other theoretical issues concerning the nature of reality, human experience, knowledge, value, and/or cultural production. [ AHo]
p. Analyze arts and/or literatures in themselves and in relation to specific histories, values, languages, cultures, and technologies. [ AHp]
q. Understand the nature of human languages and their speakers. [AHq]
r. Engage critically in the process of creative expression. [AHr]
Writing and Communication [WCR; WCD] (9 credits)
Students must take three degree credit-bearing courses, and meet both WCR (s) and WCD (t), as follows:
- All students must take 01:355:101 - Expository Writing or its equivalent;
- Students must take one additional credit-bearing course focused on revision that meets WCR (goal s);
- Students must also take one additional credit-bearing course focused on writing in a specific discipline that meets WCD (goal t):
s. Communicate complex ideas effectively, in standard written English, to a general audience, and respond effectively to editorial feedback from peers, instructors, &/or supervisors through successive drafts & revision. [WCR]
t. Communicate effectively in modes appropriate to a discipline or area of inquiry; evaluate and critically assess sources and use the conventions of attribution and citation correctly; and analyze and synthesize information and ideas from multiple sources to generate new insights. [WCD]
Quantitative and Formal Reasoning [QQ; QR] (6 credits)
Students must take two degree credit-bearing courses and meet both QQ and QR.
w. Formulate, evaluate, and communicate conclusions and inferences from quantitative information. [QQ]
(includes various quantitative methods courses as well as 640 courses)
x. Apply effective and efficient mathematical or other formal processes to reason and to solve problems. [QR]
(includes 640 courses and formal reasoning courses)
y. Employ current technologies to access and evaluate information, to conduct research, and to communicate findings.
aa. Understand the principles that underlie information systems.
- A SINGLE COURSE MAY BE USED TO MEET MORE THAN ONE CORE REQUIREMENT.
- ALL COURSES MUST BE CREDIT-BEARING, GRADED COURSES CERTIFIED BY THE SAS FACULTY AS MEETING CORE GOALS (e.g. E credit courses cannot be used to meet goals, nor can Pass/No Credit courses).
- Generally, students will need to take 10 – 14 courses to complete the Core, some of which may also fulfill major or minor requirements.