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Undergraduate Core Curriculum

Graphic showing liberal arts core

Knowledge can be pursued for many ends. Employment. Pleasure. Personal development. Discovery. At Immaculata, we believe that some ends are more fundamental and essential than others. Inspired by the Catholic intellectual and liberal arts traditions, we believe the pursuit of knowledge should, foremostly, deepen our understanding of ourselves and our world and help us to live in right relation with all that exists. We believe, too, that this pursuit attains its crown through a mutually enriching dialogue between faith and reason.

These convictions underwrite Immaculata’s Liberal Arts Core, which lies at the heart of an Immaculata undergraduate education. Through an integrated program of courses in the humanities, the sciences (natural and social) and mathematics, students learn how to pursue perennial and contemporary questions about the nature of reality, the pathways to truth and the requirements of personal and communal flourishing. Important for its own sake, students’ learning in the core is intended to nourish and inform their specialized learning in their major programs and to serve as a touchstone of a holistic and integrated education.

The core begins from the ground up with a comprehensive, wellness-themed First Year Seminar that expands to comprise three overarching categories: Vision, Inquiry and Community.


How can we understand our world in all of its complexity? For what can we hope?

A university education moves toward coherence when it is built upon strong truths. For this reason, Immaculata’s Core Curriculum is established upon the pillars of foundational courses in philosophy and theology. By way of engagement with revered traditions of wisdom, both human and divine, these courses aim to foster the kind of vision that is required to integrate all learning and to order it toward the advancement of truly human ends.


How is knowledge acquired, developed and shared?

Intellectual development is integral to a satisfying life and to responsible participation in society. Beyond wisdom, it entails the acquisition of skills that enable persons to pursue meaningful questions, to analyze data, to make sound judgments and to apply conclusions effectively. Through courses in quantitative reasoning, the natural sciences and composition, the Core Curriculum cultivates skills for the generation of new knowledge in diverse areas of inquiry, and it prepares students to share their discoveries with the larger learning community.


How do communities and individuals interact?

Human lives play out within multiple overlapping and interdependent communities, including family, friendships, work, cities, the nation and the global community. For better or worse, these dynamic communities shape human experience in countless ways, and they are shaped in turn by the actions of persons and groups. The Core Curriculum aims to heighten our social understanding by exploring the relational dimension of human existence and ways that persons and communities interact. Through courses that examine lessons of history, creative visions of the future and mechanisms of social transformation, the core cultivates concern for the common good and for the requirements of justice and solidarity.

Seven core curriculum student learning outcomes

  1. Pursue truth through critical, independent and creative thinking
  2. Obtain, evaluate and utilize the data which enables individuals to pursue knowledge and understanding
  3. Communicate proficiently in written, oral, digital and visual formats
  4. Collaborate effectively in groups in an inclusive and respectful manner
  5. Understand the nature and requirements of moral judgment and ethical reasoning
  6. Recognize how both the previous development of civilizations and contemporary forces have created a complex, diverse and interdependent world in which they must live as engaged citizens
  7. Recognize the transcendent dimensions of the human person as foundational to a moral vision of society

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