University Core

The Core Curriculum is Seattle University’s common undergraduate educational experience. Indeed, it is the very heart of your Seattle University education, embodying the university’s mission and helping you develop as leaders for a just and humane world.

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The Core isn’t simply a distribution requirement intended to make you more “well rounded.” Instead, it is a thoughtfully designed, integrated curriculum created to help all SU students grow as scholars, as citizens, and as reflective and engaged whole persons, ready to make a difference in the world.

The University Core is an important part of your SU education that goes hand-in-hand with your major classes and out-of-class experiences. It will prepare you for success as both a student and after you graduate.

Here’s how:

  • UCOR courses help you develop strong academic skills such as writing, research, critical thinking, speaking, and analysis of information—skills you need in every class at SU.
  • The Core helps you understand where knowledge comes from across the various disciplines, assisting you in becoming a strong interdisciplinary thinker able to understand, evaluate, and build on the insights of scholars, including scholars outside of your field of study.
  • Core courses introduce students to the Jesuit intellectual tradition, which for 450 years has emphasized rigorous philosophical analysis and transformative growth for the greater good. This isn’t about converting you: SU is dedicated to educating students of all faiths – or none.
  • The Core leads towards action: Using your knowledge to make a difference in the world. The knowledge and skills you gain in UCOR courses help you become a leader, connecting your special talents and insights with the real needs of the world.

Core classes have been designed by talented and dedicated faculty members who use their expertise to shape the content of each class, and who organize that content around some of the most pressing and thought-provoking questions in their disciplines. Each class invites students to actively participate in the dialogues produced by such questions—sharpening your capacity to read critically, write carefully, and express ideas effectively.

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Learning Objectives

Rooted in Jesuit, Catholic educational traditions, the primary aim of Seattle University’s Core Curriculum is formative and transformative liberal education. The key elements of this curriculum are foundational knowledge in several relevant disciplines, critical inquiry, reflection on learning and values, and preparation for life as effective and ethical global citizens. This curriculum invites students into engaged learning about themselves, their communities, and the world. Because of the University’s location in the heart of a vibrant city, SU offers students unique learning opportunities connected to Seattle, the Northwestern United States, and global settings.

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Core Academic Initiatives

Within the Core curriculum, we are committed to educating the whole person, and we are pleased to host several exciting initiatives designed to enhance student learning and the student experience “beyond the walls” of the classroom.

UCOR Course Descriptions

Visit our UCOR Course Descriptions page to learn more about the current UCOR courses being offered.

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Interested in a closed UCOR course?

Visit our Closed Course Procedure page to learn more about your options.

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We're here to help!

The University Core team is happy to assist you with any questions or concerns.