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The Common Curriculum

Undergraduate Bulletin
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Undergraduate & Graduate Dates to Remember*

Fall Term 2010

August 20-22 MBA Orientation
August 25-29 Wolfpack Welcome
August 30 Classes begin
September 3 Add deadline
October 29 Last day to withdraw & last day
to apply for graduation
December 10 Last day of classes
December 11-17 Final Exams

Spring Term 2011

January 8 New Student Orientation; MBA Orientation
January 10 Classes begin
January 14 Add deadline
March 4 Last day to withdraw
May 4 Last day of classes for undergraduate students
May 5 Last day of classes for graduate students
May 6-12 Final Exams for day division
May 9-12 Final Exams for graduate and evening students
May 14 Commencement - all colleges

*College of Law dates on Law Bulletin

The Common Curriculum (CC) stands as a clear expression of the Jesuit vision of education. The CC serves to provide a foundation in a genuinely humanistic education -- in philosophy, religious studies, literature, history, the sciences, and the arts -- complementing the major fields of study of every undergraduate's program. The CC is designed to challenge students to develop all of their talents to the fullest; it calls for critical thinking, reflection, and disciplined study. The program is comprised of introductory and advanced courses, which vary slightly depending on students' major/college.

The CC is currently undergoing revision. The revised core will be implemented over five years. While students are expected to fulfill the CC requirements of their entering year, they may substitute appropriate courses from the new core curriculum with the approval of their departmental chair and dean.

The Common Curriculum Program

First-Year Seminar (T121) - Total: 3 Credit Hours*

The gateway to the Common Curriculum is the First-Year Seminar, an interdisciplinary course that focuses on questions of enduring value through the lens of "thinking critically, acting justly." The seminar introduces first-year students to college-level thinking and learning, helps develop writing and speaking skills, and promotes critical problem solving and experiential learning. Students take a first-year seminar in either the fall or spring semester.

* The First-Year Seminar represents the first phase of the Common Curriculum revision and substitutes for an advanced Common Curriculum elective.

Introductory Courses (T122-T129) - Total: 24 Credit Hours

Begining students must take each of the following eight courses (totaling 24 cr. hrs.):

  • English Composition T122 Critical Reading/Writing
  • English T125 Writing About Literature
  • History T122 and T124 World Civilization I and World Civilization II
  • Mathematics T122 Math Models*
  • Philosophy T122 Introduction to Philosophy
  • Religious Studies T122 Introduction to World Religions
  • Science T122 Biology, Chemistry, or Physics

* A different mathematics course may be designated by the student's major department.

Advanced courses (U-Z 130-499) - Total: 21 Credit Hours

The Common Curriculum advanced courses are under three major divisions: behavioral/social sciences, humanities/arts, and natural sciences. Courses are designated either modern or pre-modern within these divisions. Students elect seven course (totaling 21 cr. hrs.) with two each in philosophy and religious studies, one in behavioral/social sciences, one in humanities/arts (excluding philosophy and religious studies), and one in natural science. Two of the selected advanced courses must be designated pre-modern. A student may not take a Common Curriculum course for Common Curriculum credit from his or her major department. Only courses listed as Common Curriculum in registration materials fulfill requirements of the program. The distribution of required advanced courses across the three divisions follows:

  • Philosophy (two selected courses) 6 credit hours
  • Religious Studies (two selected courses) 6 credit hours
  • Behavioral/Social Science 3 credit hours
  • Humanities/Arts 3 credit hours
  • Natural Science 3 credit hours

The courses offered each semester and their descriptions are found in listings under subject categories.

Part Four - Foreign Language

All students who enter B.A. or B.S. degree programs (either as freshmen or as transfers) will be required to pass a second-semester course in a foreign language or demonstrate equivalent knowledge by placing into a higher level on a departmental proficiency examination. See full explanation under Foreign Language Requirements elsewhere in this bulletin »

Part Five - General Electives

It is important that students have considerable freedom to choose those courses or series of courses that interest them so that their education may be rich and full. The number of hours a student must complete depends on the major. See statements below for limitations on elective credit.