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2015 - 2016 Academic Catalog

Core Curriculum

The Core Curriculum guides learning across all majors within Lasell’s unique connected learning environment. With its emphasis on multidisciplinary thinking, ethical reasoning, and problem-solving, the Core provides the basis for the skills and breadth of knowledge students need to succeed in the working world.

Core Student Learning Outcomes

The Core Curriculum is built on a set of 14 outcomes that are also integrated across courses in all majors. They represent three goals: core intellectual skills, knowledge perspectives, and synthesis & application.

Core Intellectual Skills

  • Read and respond in an informed and discerning way to written texts of different genres
  • Write clear, well-organized, persuasive prose
  • Use listening and speaking skills to express ideas and information clearly and confidently in a variety of settings
  • Apply quantitative reasoning to solve problems effectively
  • Use appropriate technological tools to solve problems efficiently
  • Collect, analyze, and synthesize appropriate data and sources effectively, ethically, and legally
  • Work effectively in collaborative settings

Knowledge Perspectives

  • Experience modes of self-expression and creativity (Aesthetics & Creativity)
  • Apply the process of scientific inquiry to comprehend the physical world and to solve problems (Scientific Inquiry & Problem-solving)
  • Interpret and analyze the complex interrelationships and inequities in human societies in a global and historical context (Global & Historical Perspectives)
  • Evaluate and understand how individual differences and societal contexts impact human behaviors, beliefs, values, interactions, and emotional and intellectual processes (Individuals & Society)

Synthesis & Application

  • Analyze how meanings and knowledge are created by diverse cultures and how they evolve over time
  • Respond critically and analytically to moral issues and make informed, ethical decisions
  • Participate actively as a citizen in local and global communities
Common Core Learning Experiences 

The Core Curriculum is made up of inquiry-based courses and internship and capstone experiences, creating a common core learning experience for students each year. As the courses increase in depth and complexity, students develop knowledge, skills, and ownership of their education, and create the habits of lifelong intellectual exploration and social responsibility. Students earn 51 credits for courses taken within the Core Curriculum.

The theme-based First Year Seminar emphasizes the core intellectual skills, while providing an introduction to the knowledge perspectives; connected learning projects and challenging class assignments incorporate synthesis and application.

In the first year, students also complete a self-paced, technology-enhanced mathematics course and take two courses focused on writing skills. Students build on the skills in writing and quantitative literacy established in these foundational courses in two writing-intensive courses within the major and an additional mathematics course, often also within the major. In addition, two speaking-intensive courses within the major focus on oral presentation and speaking skills.

Four courses taken during the first two years engage students in understanding and solving problems they will encounter in their professional and personal lives from four different Knowledge PerspectivesAesthetics and Creativity, Scientific Inquiry and Problem Solving, Global and Historical Perspectives, and Individuals and Society. In their last two years, students further explore at least one of the Knowledge Perspectives in an upper-level Explorations course.

Multidisciplinary Course, usually taken in the sophomore year, introduces a social or intellectual problem (such as sustainable cities) that cannot be addressed from a single knowledge perspective. Faculty guide students through a critical thinking process that crosses traditional disciplinary lines.

The Ethics Experience course, usually taken in the junior year, challenges students to analyze and grapple with real, current moral dilemmas, and their complex ethical solutions, by connecting cultural and historical ways of understanding ethical thinking with professional standards.

Capstone and Internship Experiences serve as the culmination of the Core Curriculum where students experience the highest level of connection between Core and department outcomes, skills, and knowledge.

Components of the Core Curriculum: