Liberal Studies Program > About > Common Core

Common Core

The Common Core is a series of courses typically taken sequentially by all undergraduate students as they progress towards their degree. Whereas students have much depth of exploration through the Learning Domains, the Common Core is a shared experience that most intentionally embeds opportunities for real-world application of knowledge, skills, and values.

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Chicago Quarter

Chicago Quarter courses acquaint first-year students with the metropolitan community, its neighborhoods, cultures, people, institutions, organizations and issues. It is through these classes that students make first contact with the university's urban identity and Vincentian mission.

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Focal Point Seminar

Focal Point Seminars employ a multi-disciplinary approach to investigate a significant person, place, event, text, or idea. A guiding principle is that understanding is deepened when the perspectives of various disciplines and methodologies are brought to bear upon the same issue.

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Quantitative Reasoning

The Quantitative Reasoning course, MAT 120, helps students become confident and critical users of quantitative information, developing facility in the use of spreadsheets, word processors, email, presentation software, and the Internet.

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First-Year Writing

The First-Year Writing Program provides courses to nearly all university students, with the goal of helping students learn to read and write critically within the context of the university and to prepare them for reading and writing in the world beyond.

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Seminar on Race, Power, & Resistance

investigates the intertwined historical roots and/or current legacies of racial inequalities related to differences such as class, ethnicity, gender, age, language, religion, ability, and sexual orientation.

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Experiential Learning

engages students in knowledge discovery about themselves, others, and the larger social context through participation in unpredictable, usually (but not exclusively) off-campus settings.


integrates students' major area of study with broader issues raised in their general education program, encouraging them to draw connections between their major field and those learned through the Liberal Studies Program.

Faculty Shares: Capturing Common Core

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