This year Boston College began piloting a renewed core curriculum, unveiling nine semester-long offerings for freshmen that apply an interdisciplinary lens to contemporary social problems and perennial questions about the human condition. Three are courses that utilize team teaching, with faculty from divergent disciplines working side by side.

The pilot initiative, the first core renewal since 1991, also introduces a lesser-known approach, which John Rakestraw, director of the University’s recently established Center for Teaching Excellence, refers to as “tandem teaching.” This involves faculty members teaching separate courses with overlying topics to a shared group of students. 

Listen to the professors discuss their courses below, or view the course descriptions.

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Complex Problems | Fall 2015

UNDERSTANDING RACE, GENDER, AND VIOLENCE
Marilynn Johnson, History, and Shawn McGuffey, Sociology 


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Complex Problems | Fall 2015

GLOBAL IMPLICATIONS OF CLIMATE CHANGE
Brian Gareau, Sociology, and Tara Pisani Gareau, Earth and Environmental Sciences  


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Enduring Questions | Fall 2015

TRUTH-TELLING IN LITERATURE
Allison Adair, English

TRUTH-TELLING IN HISTORY
Sylvia Sellers-Garcia, History


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Enduring Questions | Spring 2016

THE BODY IN SICKNESS AND HEALTH
Jane Ashley, Nursing

READING THE BODY
Laura Tanner, English


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Enduring Questions | Fall 2015

INQUIRING ABOUT HUMANS AND NATURE
Holly Vande Wall, Philosophy

HUMANS, NATURE, AND CREATIVITY
Min Song, English


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Complex Problems | Spring 2016

GENOCIDE AND CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY
Maxim D. Shrayer, Slavic and Eastern Languages and Literatures, and Devin Pendas, History 


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Enduring Questions | Spring 2016

POWER, JUSTICE, WAR: THE MODERNS
Aspen Brinton, Philosophy

POWER, JUSTICE, WAR: THE ANCIENTS
Robert Bartlett, Political Science


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Enduring Questions | Spring 2016

DEVISING THEATER: ILLNESS AS METAPHOR
Scott Cummings, Theatre

EPIDEMICS, DISEASE, AND HUMANITY
Mary Kathleen Dunn, Biology


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Enduring Questions | Spring 2016

AESTHETIC EXERCISES: ENGAGEMENT, EMPATHY, ETHICS
Daniel Callahan, Music

SPIRITUAL EXERCISES: ENGAGEMENT, EMPATHY, ETHICS
Brian Robinette, Theology