For the latest information, updates, and ideas related to the UP University Core Curriculum see the blog roll category of Core Matters.
Briefly, as of the 2020-2021 academic year UP is planning to implement a ‘revitalized’ University Core Curriculum that will phase in over several years starting in the Fall of the 2021-2022 academic year. This ‘Core Matters’ site was originally a space for sharing ideas about Core courses prior to revitalization; those ideas are still linked below (in the form of some excellent essays). It is also now a space for sharing information about the revitalized Core, with links and posts to be added over time as the implementation process proceeds.
Starting Fall 2020, the Core implementation is being coordinated by Andrew Guest from the Department of Psychological Sciences in a new Core Curriculum Director position. Feel free to contact the Core Director with any questions at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For UP community members, more technical information about the revitalized Core – including the proposal approved by the Academic Senate in November of 2019 – is available through pilots.up.edu.
During the 2017-2018 academic year, UP began a process to revitalize its liberal arts core curriculum. That process re-energized discussions about what we really teach in the core, what characterizes a UP core experience, and what it means for UP to be a comprehensive university with a strong liberal arts core.
This blog was initially one effort to further inform those discussions and to provide a resource to anyone interested in the UP core curriculum including those directly involved in the core revitalization. The idea was to progressively build a compendium of brief essays from faculty in various departments addressing the basic question:
How does your core course, or how do your department’s core courses, serve UP’s liberal arts core curriculum, and a broader vision of a liberal education?
A premise is that the liberal arts have historically been distinguished (from other disciplinary endeavors such as the ‘mechanical arts’ or the ‘practical arts’) by an emphasis on the intrinsic value of knowledge and developing broad intellectual capacities such as reason, judgment, aesthetics, and analytical thinking. In his book, Why Choose the Liberal Arts? Mark William Roche, former dean of Notre Dame’s College of Arts and Letters, argues that there are three broad ways the liberal arts matter: 1) for its intrinsic value and opportunities for “asking the great questions that give meaning to life”; 2) for cultivating intellectual virtues that are critical to success in any career path or civic engagement; and 3) for contributing to character formation and “the connection to a higher purpose.”
Essay contributions included: