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Catholic Studies

Program Coordinators

John Donnelly, Ph.D., Philosophy
Joseph McGowan, Ph.D., English

The Catholic Studies Minor

In the past few years, a new development in the history of American Catholic higher education has been taking place: the formation of programs in Catholic studies. USD has inaugurated a minor in Catholic studies that will explore the texts, traditions, themes, and teachings of the Catholic Church from its inception to its contemporary expression. This interdisciplinary program will enable both students and faculty to study the Catholic tradition, its ethos, identity, and mission, as made tangible in history, philosophy, literature, theology, the fine arts, the social and behavioral sciences, and the natural sciences.

We invite students to consider minoring in Catholic studies as a focus for serious conversations about how Catholicism unfolds in the world in its many multicultural, multinational contexts, and how that intellectual and institutional culture has an impact upon human experience.

The Catholic studies minor is an 18 unit program (at least 9 units of which must be fulfilled by upper-division courses) that includes the following requirements:

  1. CATH 133 – Introduction to Catholic Studies;
  2. CATH 394 – Topics in Contemporary Catholic Culture and Thought (a practicum in community service will be integrated
    into this capstone course);
  3. A 3 unit course in literature;
  4. A 3 unit course in philosophy;
  5. A 3 unit course in Theology and Religious Studies (THRS 114– Introduction to Catholic Theology will ordinarily, unless
    varied, be taken by students as one of their core curriculum requirements in theology and religious studies); and,
  6. A 3 unit course selected from one of the following areas: history, art/music, or science/social science.