Core Curriculum

University of San Diego's core curriculum will prepare you to be a life-long learner who has the necessary skills to navigate your future career and live a meaningful life.

San Diego Core: Beauty, Goodness and Truth

USD has a proud history as a liberal arts institution. Since our founding, we have educated students who find meaningful connections beyond the classroom and combine academic knowledge with inspiring interactions with the world around them. At USD, we educate the mind and spirit of our students. One of our founders, Mother Rosalie Hill, believed that, "There are three things that are significant in education: beauty, goodness and truth." And this belief has been reflected in the fabric of our university from 1949 until now.

Our core curriculum embodies this mantra in both the breadth of courses studied and its integrated nature.

The ability to see beyond a single subject or major empowers our students to find opportunities for innovation, identify points of synergy and affect positive, far-reaching change. To cultivate such inventive habits of mind and heart, our students complete our core curriculum. It was crafted to ensure that a USD student is a well-rounded student, who will succeed no matter where their professional and personal ambitions lead. 

USD's Core Curriculum is both a nod to our founding mission and a promising look at the future.  

San Diego Core Flowchart (Fall 2017) Faculty Core Resources 

Thoughtfully Designed

Designed by our faculty, USD’s core curriculum spans critical competencies that employers routinely tout as the most important skills needed in the workforce. Broadly speaking, these are communication skills, both written and spoken, and problem solving skills.

Ethically Minded

We also strive to educate ethical leaders and engaged citizens, so our core curriculum allows students to investigate questions of ethical, religious and philosophical inquiry. With classes dedicated to critically examining issues of diversity and inclusion, our students are versed in how difference may lead to disparities in life experiences domestically and internationally.

Liberal Arts Centered

True to the legacy of great minds like Socrates and Aristotle, our definition of “liberal arts” is broad and comprehensive. Every USD undergraduate student, no matter of major, gains scientific laboratory experience and a diversity of perspectives that can only come from critically examining art, history, literature and the human experience.

Changemaker Curriculum

For USD, our commitment to the liberal arts and sciences means that we are dedicated to educating students who want to affect positive change, and the best way to do this is to gain a holistic understanding of the world around us.