Several departments address the arts at Dominican, including Apparel, Art, Communications and Theatre Arts and Music. Courses meeting the fine arts requirement help students understand and respond to works of fine and performing arts. This includes an awareness of relationships and interactions between artists and their cultural contexts, and an appreciation of ways in which the fine arts express feelings and ideas. This understanding may be gained through personal experience of the creative processes or through the study of works of art; thus, some studio courses and appreciation courses meet this requirement.
When new students think about their future college experience, chances are they focus on their major field of study. But, looking back, many Dominican alumnae/i remember classes from their core curriculum as being the ones that shaped their academic experience.
Foundations courses equip students with basic skills fundamental to all other facets of the undergraduate course of study. Accordingly, students are urged to meet the foundation requirements within their first two semesters if at all possible.
Each student must demonstrate before graduation:
Critical Reading & Writing
This requirement may be met by placement examination or by completing with a passing grade college-level coursework in writing equivalent to English 102.
Understanding & Use of Mathematics
This requirement may be met by placement examination or by completing with a passing grade college-level coursework equivalent to Mathematics 130, 150, 160 or 170.
This requirement may be met by placement examination or by completing with a passing grade a foreign language course at the level of 102. Foreign nationals educated abroad at the high school level are exempt from the requirement.
Introduction to these skills will take place in English 102, where students will learn the basics of library research. This includes the ability to locate both print and electronic sources by searching library databases for articles and books; effectively using the Internet for academic purposes; evaluating information critically; and using the information ethically and legally. Students who place out of English 102 at Dominican University will be required to complete an Information Access Workshop during their first semester.
This requirement may be met by placement examination or by completing with a passing grade in CIS 120 or its equivalent.
All students enroll each year in Liberal Arts and Sciences Seminars, the heart of Dominican’s Core Curriculum. LAS Seminars are small, intimate courses in which students consider multiple perspectives on universal and urgent questions by reading, discussing, and writing about the seminar topic. These courses encourage students to:
- Get excited about learning for learning's sake
- Think critically
- Hone their writing skills
- Explore new ideas and ways of thinking
- Ponder life's big questions
- Make connections between classes and experience
Students choose from a variety of seminars according to their class standing that explore a common theme:
- Freshman Seminar: The Examined Life (100-level)
- Sophomore Seminar: Life in Community (200-level)
- Junior Seminar: A Life's Work (300-level)
- Senior Seminar: The Good Life (400-level)
These are critical aspects of a liberal education that prepare students not only for career opportunities but also for life-long learning.
Note: Students may take two of the Liberal Arts and Sciences Seminars, excluding the Freshman Seminar, to fulfill two of the seven area requirements. Consult the 2015-2016 Bulletin and each year’s schedule of classes for area requirements that may be met by particular seminars.
To meet the Core’s multicultural requirement, each student must complete one course of at least three semester hours that focuses on:
- The culture or analysis of society or civilization in Africa, Latin America/Caribbean and/or Asia; OR
- The experience, traditions, beliefs, arts or thought of African-American, Asian-American, Hispanic-American or Native American cultures.
Areas of Study
Fine Arts (FA)
Courses that meet the History requirement are designed to help students develop a sense of historical perspective as the term is understood by historians. This involves developing an understanding of the ways societies may change over time and of the importance of sequential occurrence. Students also gain an awareness of complexity, ambiguity and uncertainty as intractable conditions of human society through study of the interactions of diverse forces and circumstances on situations in past societies.
English, French, Italian, Spanish - Two main departments address literature at Dominican: English and Modern Foreign Languages. Courses that meet the literature requirement help students understand and respond to works of literature. Such an understanding includes awareness of relationships between authors and their cultural and historical contexts, as well as critical appreciation of ways found by writers to express feelings and ideas through language.
Natural Sciences (NS)
Relevant disciplines include biology, chemistry, nutrition and physics. Courses that meet the Natural Sciences requirement acquaint the student with scientific thought and inquiry. In the process, such courses help students gain an understanding of fundamental concepts and methodologies of the sciences.
Courses that meet the Philosophy requirement are designed to have students consider philosophy as part of a reasoned pursuit of wisdom in one's life. Such courses focus on some of the "big questions" philosophers typically deal with, such as:
- What makes something "true" or "good?"
- Do human beings have free will?
- Is there more to us than our bodies?
- What's real?
- Does life have meaning?
Students will gain acquaintance with some of the philosophical positions regarding these questions and have numerous opportunities to discuss these questions openly and reasonably within the context of one's personal and professional life, and as a member of one's community.
Social Sciences (SS)
A number of disciplines comprise the social sciences, including Economics, Political Science, Psychology and Sociology. Courses that meet the social sciences requirement provide students with the conceptual tools necessary to think independently about social, economic, psychological or political phenomena. They also become acquainted with various methodologies used to analyze such ideas.
Study in disciplines particularly concerned with analysis of the behavior of individuals, groups, or institutions and their interactions helps students form a sophisticated—informed, complex, and thoughtful—response to contemporary problems.
Theology courses invite students to recognize the methods and sources proper to theological reflection, to explore ways that religious traditions, especially Catholic Christianity, raise and attempt to answer questions of ultimate meaning and value, and to articulate a theologically informed position on key questions regarding the transcendent meaning and value of human existence and experience.