Proposed Requirement Descriptions

Proposed Requirement Descriptions: Content and Context Requirements

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Exploring Expressive Works

Students will analyze significant texts (such as written, cinematic, and artistic works), focusing on form as well as content. Students will learn the characteristics of the major genres relevant to the subject matter and become familiar with some of the cultural and historical factors that shape expressive works. They will learn and apply appropriate terms and concepts of critical analysis.

Re-examining America

Students will choose from a variety of courses from disciplines across the university. A major element of these courses will be the analysis of significant issues and events in the United States from a historical perspective. Students will examine social categories such as race, ethnicity, nationality, gender, sexuality, language, citizenship, religion, social class, age and physical ability in American society and culture, and how those categories interact with each other in important ways. Students will discuss the advantages and challenges inherent in a pluralistic society, such as discussions about human rights, inequity, differences in power and privilege, and struggles for social justice. These courses will share some common student learning outcomes, as well as unique learning outcomes appropriate to that course’s specific content.

Creativity and Making

Students will produce works in the creative arts (such as visual and performing arts, creative writing, etc.). Students will learn strategies and processes in creative problem-solving and inquiry-based learning that bridge theory and practice. Students will critically analyze their work, works of their peers, and works of professionals in the field to gain better understanding of creative practice and works. This course is intended to challenge prior knowledge the student brings to the course and to give students hands-on experience with the process of creation and analysis.

Global Perspectives

This component of the St. Edward’s General Education Curriculum involves expanding students’ boundaries globally and internationally. It seeks to foster students’ understanding of their role in, relationship with, and responsibility to the larger global system and community. Courses which will satisfy this requirement may come from disciplines across the university and will variously focus on culture, society, business and economics, and/or politics, to explore such issues as diversity, identity, citizenship, equality, democracy, power, civil and human rights, conflict and cooperation, sustainability, and ethical action and responsibility.

Studies in Theology and Religion

Courses that meet this requirement analyze the origins of religious ideas and beliefs, study the core concepts of sacred texts or theologies, and explore the ways religion has shaped—and continues to shape—the world in which we live.


Philosophical ethics can be described as the attempt to think clearly and deeply about fundamental moral questions that arise for us as humans. Ethics is concerned with evaluating appropriate action, proper character, the characteristics of the good life, and what is involved in acting rightly. To study historical and contemporary philosophical positions is to explore the most enduring answers that have been given to these concerns. Courses that satisfy this requirement will (1) overseen by the Philosophy Department and (2) have ethics in the title. Examples include: Ethical Analysis; Medical Ethics; Business Ethics; Ethics and Public Policy; Legal Ethics; Environmental Ethics; Neuroethics; Disability Studies and Ethics.

Natural Science

Students will consider broad (relevant) scientific questions from a variety of perspectives in a problem-based setting. Students will use data analysis to evaluate and interpret their own lab-based experimental results, and to critically evaluate data presented in primary research articles. Students might confront the role of science in creating and solving current societal problems, and examine the historical, societal, and scientific contexts of the questions they explore.