Core Curriculum Overview

The Foundational Core | 30 credits

FY 125 First-year Seminar
This seminar is an introduction to academic writing and discourse. It focuses on writing as both process and product, linked to critical thinking and problem-solving. The small-class setting gives students the opportunity to begin developing their skills in writing, seminar-style communication, and information literacy. Seminars are offered in a wide range of specialty topics, which vary from semester to semester. Recent examples include: It’s the End of the World as We Know It: Apocalyptic Literature, Jane Austen’s Guide to Dating, The Fighting Irish, Talking about Fight Club, and Justice League.

FLO 125 The Art of Thinking
The purpose of this course is to foster proficient critical thinking. While most courses help develop critical thinking through the analysis of disciplinary content, Art of Thinking addresses critical thinking directly by breaking it down into specific skills and competencies.

HI 100/102 Western Civilization I or II
This first course provides students with an introduction to the historical development of Western Civilization from its roots in the ancient world to 1500. The focus will be on the development of the common good resulting in ideas of citizenship and democracy and in the growth of culture. The themes and topics in the second course will lead to a greater understanding of how historical development occurred since 1500. The focus will be on the development of economics, the sciences, and social and political ideas.

For the remaining courses, students take an appropriate course in Math and select a course from each of the following: English; Philosophy; Theology and Religious Studies; Art, Design, or Communications; and the social and natural sciences.

The Human Journey Seminars

Great Books in the Catholic Intellectual Tradition     6 CR
These two courses provide students with an interdisciplinary understanding of the roots and development of the Catholic Intellectual Tradition as an ongoing 2000 year conversation between the Catholic community of its thinkers, writer, artists and the cultures in which they have lived, asking fundamental questions about God, humanity, society, and nature. The first seminar includes readings from The Bible, Plato, and Aquinas. In the second seminar, students read selections from Thomas Merton, John Henry Newman, and Dorothy Day, among others.

Thematic Liberal Arts | 9 credits

This part of the Core provides a more in-depth exploration of the liberal arts through a particular theme. Students select a course in the humanities, social/behavioral sciences, and natural/physical sciences in one of the following areas:

Wellness and Well-being
This theme investigates the physical, mental, emotional, intellectual, spiritual, economic, and environmental dimensions underlying personal wellness and well-being. It will enable students to reflect, articulate, and connect the numerous contributions that allow people to realize their individual potential, engage in meaningful relationships, and contribute to the development and application of knowledge for the betterment of the human community.

Freedom, Equality, and the Common Good
This concentration is designed to prepare students for a life of engaged, responsible, and ethical citizenship in an increasingly interdependent and complex world. Topics include identity and self-determination, political representation and participation, equality of opportunity, cultural diversity, race and discrimination, conflict and cooperation, religious freedom and toleration, immigration, and social welfare. 

The Search for Beauty
This thematic framework will consider the intellectual, spiritual, aesthetic, and scientific search for and expression of the beautiful in all its forms. Students will explore and appreciate the fundamental aspiration to unravel and celebrate the innate and intricate beauty of life and of human creativity and inquiry, and will learn how we find emotional and intellectual satisfaction as well as personal and social significance through that understanding.