University of Notre Dame

University Requirements

To rightfully say that you are a “Domer,” you must successfully complete a broad liberal arts curriculum in addition to completing the requirements of a particular major. This curriculum, established by the University Academic Council, is commonly referred to as your “University Requirements.”

All Notre Dame students, no matter what their major is, must complete the following courses before graduation:

  • 1 course in University Seminar
  • 1 course in Writing and Rhetoric
  • 2 courses in mathematics
  • 2 courses in science
  • 1 course in history*
  • 1 course in social science*
  • 2 courses in philosophy*
  • 2 courses in theology*
  • 1 course in fine arts* or literature*
  • 2 courses in the Moreau First Year Experience

*A University seminar will fulfill one University requirement in one of these disciplines.

The First Year Curriculum contains a subset of these University Requirements that must be completed in your first year at Notre Dame to keep you on track to complete your degree within four years of entering the University.

All students are required to complete a minimum of 60 credit-hours at the University of Notre Dame and a minimum of 90 credit-hours earned through college and university courses to receive a degree from the University. For some students, meeting this requirement means that not all of their AP or IB credit can be counted toward their graduation.

As our president, the Rev. John Jenkins, C.S.C., said in his 2005 inaugural address, “What is the role of a Catholic University? Pope John Paul II once wrote that our proper activity is: ‘Learning to think rigorously, so as to act rightly and to serve humanity better.’ ” The University Requirements reflect the values and vision of an undergraduate education that produces culturally literate citizens who are able to critically evaluate options and take thoughtful action to address the fundamental problems that we as a global society face today.

Finding the right path through the multitude of options and opportunities that Notre Dame offers to meet your University Requirements can be daunting. Your First Year Advisor will guide you through the process of creating an academic plan that will ensure that you achieve the goals that Notre Dame has laid out for you.