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Academic Program

Academic requirements are divided into three types of classes:


I. Foundational Courses

In consultation with their faculty mentor, students select three foundational courses, two in lower-division Catholic theology from offering in the Religious Studies Department (numbered from 1 to 99), and one from a list of Western Culture series courses designated for this purpose (e.g., History, Literature, Philosophy, Art History, Music, Theatre and Dance). These courses are listed on the annual Catholic Studies course list. These requirements may therefore overlap with other Core Curriculum requirements.


II. Faith and Culture Courses

In consultation with their faculty mentor, students then select: (1) one specialized course in Catholic history (preferably from the History Department), (2) one course in Catholic literature (preferably from the English Department), (3) a specialized course in philosophy or an upper-division course in theology, and (4) two approved electives in the study of Catholic culture or thought. All of these courses are listed on the annual Catholic Studies course list and again these courses may overlap with Core Curriculum requirements.


III. The Colloquium

One quarter per year, students are invited to participate in a two-unit interdisciplinary Colloquium on Catholic Imagination, offered on a pass/no-pass basis.

The aim of the Colloquium is to create an informal context in which students can explore and discuss the relationship between faith and culture as presented in a variety of mediums including film, literature, philosophy, poetry, autobiography, music, novels, and developments in the sciences.

The interdisciplinary nature of the discussions provides an opportunity for students to synthesize their Catholic Studies course work and to see how material from different courses is interrelated. The small group setting encourages students to personalize the material and relate it to their own life experience.

A Learning Community: Catholic Studies students enter into a community of learning with fellow students and faculty. Students are regularly alerted through e-mail of academic, cultural, social and religious opportunities such as retreats, lectures, concerts, internships and social events, including group activities especially designed for Catholic Studies minor.