The University of San Diego is in its third year of a revision process related to the Core Curriculum. In articulating our vision for the core, we look to develop a core that gives our students a greater sense of direction and intention in their educational experiences, and that facilitates interdisciplinary, experiential, and ethically-engaged learning.
The 2013-2014 academic year is focused on the creation of a core curriculum identifying new opportunities for students in key areas. The core planning committee is organized into to working groups concentrating on Integration, Breadth, Catholic Intellectual Tradition, and Indispensible Competencies. Each working group will submit a proposal to the core planning committee for review. The steering committee will consolidate the reports into one document for distribution to undergraduate faculty. As proposals are submitted they can be accessed here: Integration (report, presentation, notes), Breadth (report, presentation, notes), Catholic Intellectual Tradition (report, notes), and Indispensible Competencies (report, table, presentation, notes). The CPC met to discuss a complete proposal that consolidates the recommendations from the various subcommittees (draft proposal, notes). The summary report that outlines the proposal for a new core curriculum can be accessed here: (report).
During Spring 2014, members of the Core Planning Committee are listening to feedback from faculty. To help answer some key questions, subcommittee chairs have created a “Frequently Asked Questions” document for their area. Those can be accessed here: (Integration, Breadth, Catholic Intellectual Tradition, and Competencies).
To inform the CPC of previous curricular work that had been done by faculty in 2011 related to diversity, The Diversity Curriculum Committee resubmitted their 2011 report for consideration. It can be accessed here.
The core revision process began in summer, 2011. Attending a week-long intensive workshop, a task force developed the Core Action Plan, a working document that provided initiated campus-wide discussions about the core curriculum. It provides a broadly based vision statement, process description, timetable, and other key elements.
The second year of the core revision process is guided by the Core Proposal, passed April, 2012 by the faculty in the College of Arts and Sciences, the School of Business Administration, and the Department of Engineering. It was subsequently accepted by the University Senate and reviewed by the Academic Affairs Committee of the Board of Trustees.
The Core Proposal is composed of a set of general recommendations and an articulation of general principles for continued discussion that emerged during the first year of the revision process. Task force committees were formed for each of the six principles for deeper analysis and discussion. A separate working group, the Task Force on the Catholic Intellectual Tradition in the Core Curriculum (CITCC), was formed to develop and articulate a set of general principles to guide the design of USD’s core curriculum to ensure that it reflects its Catholic identity and the Catholic intellectual tradition. More information about this committee can be found on this website on the CITCC tab.
By December, 2012, each task force committee had generated reports that identified key components of each principle and recommendations for how these might be implemented in the core curriculum. The final reports for each task force include: breadth, smaller core size, diversity, enhanced components, multidisciplinary clusters, and writing. The final report of the CITCC can be found on the CITCC tab and here.
During the spring semester, 2013, the Core Planning Committee (CPC) will work on developing curricular applications or core models that reflect the recommendations of each task force. Additionally, the CPC will establish short-term and long-term timelines for the core revision process over the next several years. Discussions of core models and timelines will include all faculty through attendance at the open forums planned for this spring. Please check the CEE website for times and locations of these events. Additionally, you are welcome to post your comments directly to the Imagine the Core blog.
The USD Core Curriculum fosters the pursuit of knowledge through active student and faculty participation in a broad and richly diverse academic experience. The Core develops indispensable competencies, explores traditions of thought and belief, and probes the horizons of the liberal arts and the diversity of human experience. The Core promotes critical appreciation of truth, goodness, and beauty in the context of engagement with the Catholic intellectual tradition and diverse faith communities. The Core instills habits of thought and action which will serve all students in their academic majors and throughout their lives as reflective citizens of the world.