The Core Curriculum

This page was last updated on January 5, 2018.

The Core Curriculum, courses required by the University in order to receive an undergraduate degree from Notre Dame, is based in a “ways of knowing” approach designed to expose students to diverse modes of thought for approaching, analyzing, and understanding different aspects of our lives and our world. Each course forms a complementary part of the larger whole, bringing individual students closer to attaining the intellectual capacities and practices that fulfill the overall goals of a Notre Dame education.

The requirements of the University's Core Curriculum are grouped in four categories:

General Liberal Arts

  1. Quantitative Reasoning
  2. Science & Technology
  3. Quantitative Reasoning or Science & Technology
  4. Art & Literature, or Advanced Language & Culture
  5. History or Social Science
  6. Integration or Way of Knowing not yet chosen from 4 or 5

Exploring Explicitly Catholic Dimensions of the Liberal Arts

  1. Foundational Theology
  2. Developmental Theology
  3. Introductory Philosophy
  4. Philosophy elective or Catholicism and the Disciplines


  1. University Seminar*
  2. Writing & Rhetoric or Other Writing-Intensive Course

Moreau First Year Experience

  1. Moreau: One two-semester course

* A University Seminar course may be double-counted to fulfill both the USEM requirement and one of the other liberal arts requirements.

All students must take the required writing courses and the Moreau First Year Experience in the first year. Other core curriculum courses may be taken as well. In addition to the courses you may take to satisfy the core curriculum requirements, there may courses required by your intended major that also need to be addressed in your first year.