The Core Curriculum has, since 1919, provided students with wide-ranging perspectives on significant ideas and achievements in literature, philosophy, history, music, art, and science. The classes that comprise the Core Curriculum engage social, political, and philosophical ideas that have resonated across millennia and continue to challenge us today. The skills and habits honed by the Core - analysis, argument, and respect for ideas, nuances, and differences - provide a rigorous preparation for life.
First-year students are required to complete Masterpieces of Western Literature and Philosophy, University Writing, and Frontiers of Science. Most students complete Introduction to Contemporary Civilization in the West in their second year. Masterpieces of Western Art and Masterpieces of Western Music are usually completed by the third year of study. Students plan the rest of their program according to their own academic goals: the College envisions that the Core will arc across all four years of study, introducing students to new disciplines and paralleling or converging with students' major fields.