During the 2017-2018 academic year, UP began a process to revitalize its liberal arts core curriculum. That process has 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 ‘core matters’ blog project is one small 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 hope is 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.”
As posts are added hyperlinks will be inserted here in this preliminary table of contents (presented in the order of their appearance in Degree Works!)
- Core Matters: A (Re) Introduction to the Core Curriculum
- Fine Arts
- Philosophy & Ethics
- Science: Environmental Science, Biology, Chemistry, and Physics
- Social Sciences: Communications, Economics, Political Science, Psychology, Sociology, Social Work
- Theology & Biblical Tradition
Plus bonus perspectives from:
- International Languages and Cultures