Core Curriculum

Through the Boston College Core Curriculum, undergraduates acquire a common intellectual foundation. They experience an intensive grounding in the defining works of the humanities, natural sciences, and social sciences, introducing them to the forces that have shaped world history and culture. This focus broadens students’ intellectual horizons while shaping their characters and helping them learn how to discern well—preparing them for meaningful lives and rewarding careers.

The Core’s approach—which includes classroom learning, labs, reflection opportunities, and experiences that extend beyond the classroom—operates at the nexus of knowledge, beliefs, and actions. It encourages students to integrate what they learn into their everyday lives, priming them to become engaged, effective global citizens.

The Boston College Core Curriculum guides students on journeys of interdisciplinary inquiry to discover how to think about the world. Students explore new ways of knowing and being, helping them discern who they want to be, how they want to live—and why.

Students completing the Boston College Core Curriculum will:

  1. Demonstrate the critical, mathematical, informational, analytic, expressive, and creative skills that are essential tools of the educated person well-prepared for a meaningful life and vocation.
  2. Understand the major ideas and methods of inquiry of the scholarly disciplines that comprise the university and be able to use those methods of inquiry as beginning practitioners to address complex contemporary problems.
  3. Be able to identify and articulate the strengths and limitations of the disciplines and the relationship of the disciplines to one another, and demonstrate an understanding of the breadth and diversity of human knowledge as well as its openness to integration in more comprehensive wholes.
  4. Be conversant with and able to discuss intelligently enduring questions and issues that are fundamental to human inquiry and that have shaped the traditions from which the university has emerged.
  5. Demonstrate the ability to apply more than one disciplinary perspective to the same enduring question or complex contemporary problem.
  6. Be familiar with the scholarly exploration of religious faith and understand how faith and reason are related in the search for truth.
  7. Demonstrate the ability to examine their values and experiences and integrate what they learn with the principles that guide their lives.
  8. Be prepared and disposed to use their talents and education as engaged global citizens and responsible leaders in service of the common good.

Contact Core
on Zoom

The Core office will be available via Zoom Drop In
Thursdays from 10:00–11:00 a.m.


For Students


Core Requirements and courses

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Complex Problems & Enduring Questions

Explore Complex Problems & Enduring Questions courses, open only to first year students.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Student FAQ