The page uses Browser Access Keys to help with keyboard navigation. Click to learn moreSkip to Navigation

Different browsers use different keystrokes to activate accesskey shortcuts. Please reference the following list to use access keys on your system.

Alt and the accesskey, for Internet Explorer on Windows
Shift and Alt and the accesskey, for Firefox on Windows
Shift and Esc and the accesskey, for Windows or Mac
Ctrl and the accesskey, for the following browsers on a Mac: Internet Explorer 5.2, Safari 1.2, Firefox, Mozilla, Netscape 6+.

We use the following access keys on our gateway

n Skip to Navigation
k Accesskeys description
h Help
    Elizabethtown College
   
 
  Aug 21, 2017
 
 
    
Skip Navigation
College Catalog 2017-2018

The Core Program and Signature Learning Experiences



Overview

The Core Program supports the academic goals expressed in Elizabethtown College’s mission statement. It has four major purposes: to provide a sense of mission and purpose to general education, to provide a foundation for successful study in liberal arts and professions, to integrate knowledge across the disciplines by engaging students in the study of the natural world and the human experience, and to develop habits of the mind that foster continued intellectual growth. The Core Program promotes truth, tenable judgments, and important ideas by assuring that a student has the opportunity to acquire significant knowledge and accepted methods of inquiry.

An important component of the Core Program is the First-Year Seminar. In addition, students enroll in 10 courses in eight Areas of Understanding. The thematic Areas of Understanding unite the Core Program into a cohesive offering, develop skills of self-education, and integrate knowledge across the disciplines. Any exceptions to Core requirements must be petitioned to the Academic Standing Committee.

The Core Check Sheet is available here.

Common Core

Students, who are entering the College for the first time and who are pursuing a bachelor’s degree, must take a First-Year Seminar during their first semester. Transfer students who have completed fewer than 24 credits of course work at another college also are required to complete the First-Year Seminar.

Student Learning Outcomes for First-Year Seminar:

Students will be able to:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the academic expectations of college life.
  • Demonstrate effective critical thinking skills.
  • Communicate orally in an effective manner.
  • Produce an appropriately researched, documented, and written academic paper.
  • Relate opportunities for learning outside the classroom to academic courses, personal interests, and intended program of study.

  

Areas of Understanding

The Elizabethtown College Core Program consists of eight thematic Areas of Understanding (AU).

Power of Language (two courses)

Students are required to take one English-based course (Power of Language - English) and one Modern or Ancient Language Course (Power of Language - Other) to complete this Area of Understanding.

Courses in the English component of this AU emphasize the use of the English language in logic, rhetoric, and persuasive communication. Students learn to articulate ideas and critically evaluate arguments. Students may complete a writing-based English course (EN 100 ) or, for students who test accordingly, an advanced course (EN 150  or PH 110 ). Students placed in English 100 must successfully complete EN 100  for their Power of Language AU. Students who receive credit for EN 100  (including transfer or AP credit) cannot receive credit for EN 150 . The Power of Language – English course must be taken during the students’ first year or prior to the start of their second year.

Student Learning Outcomes for the Power of Language (English-based) AU:

Students will be able to:

  • Construct logical and persuasive argument.
  • Read carefully and critically.
  • Analyze and synthesize new ideas.
  • Explain how language affects thinking and conceptual development.

Courses in the Other component of the Power of Language AU allow students to start or continue the study of a Modern or Ancient Language. These courses come primarily from the Department of Modern Languages.

Student Learning Outcomes for the Power of Language (other) AU:

Students will be able to:

  • Comprehend and/or produce the target language at the appropriate course level for the discipline.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of corresponding culture(s) at the appropriate course level of the discipline.

Mathematics (one course)

This AU develops competency in quantitative reasoning and problem-solving skills. These courses come primarily from the Department of Mathematical and Computer Sciences.

Student Learning Outcomes for the Mathematics AU:

Students will be able to:

  • Use inductive or deductive reasoning to formulate and evaluate arguments.
  • Model real-world phenomena mathematically.
  • Utilize mathematics effectively in problem-solving strategies.

Creative Expression (one course or course equivalent)

Courses in this AU include analysis and interpretation of artistic works. Students focus on creation or performance within a particular artistic discipline. These courses come primarily from the Department of Fine and Performing Arts (Art, Music, Theatre, Dance) and the English department. Students can also use any combination of private music lessons or ensembles equaling 4 credits to satisfy this requirement.

Student Learning Outcomes for the Creative Expression AU:

Students will be able to:

  • Examine concepts employed in the creation and analysis of like artworks.
  • Develop and articulate informed aesthetic judgments.
  • Create or perform artistic work representative of the discipline.
  • Express the intrinsic value of an artistic medium.
  • Define the ways in which creative art forms show and affirm human feelings, desires, experiences, and/or values.

Western Cultural Heritage (one course)

This AU introduces students to Western culture and history through the critical analysis of significant human endeavors in European societies and/or their global offshoots. Communities in Europe and the Americas typically (though not exclusively) fall into this category. The courses in this AU come primarily from the departments of English, History, Philosophy, Sociology/Anthropology, Religious Studies, Modern Languages, and Political Science.

Student Learning Outcomes for the Western Cultural Heritage AU:

Students will be able to:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the importance of a specific aspect of Western cultural heritage.
  • Explain the historical context of the subject under study, illustrating the complexity of the past and its relationship to the contemporary world.
  • Explain how knowledge can be subject to a variety of interpretations.
  • Analyze primary and/or secondary sources.

Non-Western Cultural Heritage (one course)

This AU introduces students to Non-Western culture and history through the critical analysis of significant human endeavors in societies other than European ones and/or the global offshoots of European societies. Communities in Asia and the Pacific, Africa, and the Middle East typically (though not exclusively) fall into this category. The courses in this AU come primarily from the departments of English, History, Philosophy, Sociology/Anthropology, Religious Studies, Modern Languages, and Political Science.

Student Learning Outcomes for the Non-Western Cultural Heritage AU:

Students will be able to:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the importance of a specific aspect of non-Western cultural heritage.
  • Explain the historical context of the subject under study, illustrating the complexity of the past and its relationship to the contemporary world.
  • Explain how knowledge can be subject to a variety of interpretations.

Natural and Physical Sciences (two courses in different disciplines)

This AU explores the natural and physical world through discussion and discovery of major scientific concepts and theories. Students must complete two courses in different disciplines. At least one course must include a laboratory component, which emphasizes “the hands on” nature of science. These courses come primarily from the departments of Biology, Chemistry, and Engineering and Physics.

Student Learning Outcomes for the Natural and Physical Sciences AU:

Students will be able to:

  • Describe and apply major scientific concepts of a particular field.
  • Explain methods of scientific inquiry.
  • Collect (if a lab-based course), analyze, and interpret data.

Social Sciences (one course)

Courses in this AU observe and analyze human behavior, ranging from the formation of the self and family structures to economic trends and the interactions of nations. These courses come primarily from the departments of History, Political Science, Sociology/Anthropology, Psychology, and Economics.

Student Learning Outcomes for the Social Sciences AU:

Students will be able to:

  • Discuss and apply major concepts and theories that interpret human behavior and interaction.
  • Analyze human experiences and interactions in diverse social contexts.
  • Explain the organization and function of one or more social systems.
  • Describe the methods and procedures of social science research.

Humanities (one course)

Courses in this AU examine ethical and moral dilemmas, values, and choices from an analytical or critical perspective. Students are engaged in the decision-making process and consider the implications of their choices for self and society. Courses in this AU come primarily from the departments of Philosophy, English, History, Religious Studies, and Fine and Performing Arts.

Student Learning Outcomes for the Humanities AU:

Students will be able to:

  • Explain the nature of one or more values that govern human conduct.
  • Explain how an individual’s values and choices can be influenced by many factors, as seen in a major work (literary, artistic, historical, religious, or philosophical).
  • Apply knowledge about values to a particular ethical situation, moral dilemma, or aesthetic judgment.

Signature Learning Experiences

An important component of Elizabethtown College Signature Learning Experiences is the high impact practices which supplement classroom learning. Signature Learning Experience is so significant that, completing at least two of these five Signature Learning Experiences (SLE) is a graduation requirement for all Elizabethtown College students. The student’s academic adviser will assist in choosing two of five SLEs:

Supervised Research
Undergraduate research actively engages students in scholarship at an advanced level under the close supervision of a faculty mentor or approved disciplinary expert. Results from the research should be disseminated publicly in a way that is appropriate to the discipline (presentation, in writing, performance, exhibition, prototype development, etc.).
Internships, Field Placements, Practicums
A transcribed academic internship is a form of experiential learning that integrates knowledge and theory learned in the classroom with practical application and skills development in a professional setting. A field experience or practicum is a learning opportunity that takes place in the field of practice, is embedded in an associated course, and supervised by faculty.
Capstone Course, Project or Development Portfolio
Culminating experience near the end of the college career in which students integrate, synthesize and apply what they have learned in the major or program. Capstone experiences can include courses, projects, performances, exhibits, and/or portfolios. Portfolios should include artifacts and narratives, sampled during the college career under faculty review, that demonstrate competencies or learning outcomes in the major or program.
Community-Based Learning
Community-Based Learning is an instructional strategy that gives students opportunities to apply knowledge and skills from the classroom to analyze and address community problems. In so doing, students achieve a deeper and more integrated understanding of their studies while benefitting the community.
Cross-Cultural Experience

Cross-cultural experiences allow students to engage meaningfully with diverse cultures, experiences, and worldviews, by living and studying in a culture different from their own. These experiences can be domestic or abroad and include traditional semester study abroad programs as well as short-term faculty-led programs.

All students are encouraged to discuss these opportunities with their peer mentors, first-year seminar adviser and professors and explore the College website to see how other students have personalized a Signature Learning Experience that is just right for them.

Additional Requirements and Policies

After completion of the First Year Seminar, students will be required to complete one core course identified in the semester scheduled as “Guided Writing and Research” (GWR). A course with a GWR designation shall a) provide direct instruction in writing and research, including instruction in locating and analyzing sources, in organizing logical arguments, in paraphrasing, and in citing information from sources; b) require a total of at least 15-20 pages of finished writing; c) provide periodic instructor feedback on writing and practice in revision; d) incorporate an evaluation of the student’s performance in research and writing in their final grade; and e) have an appropriately reduced class size to facilitate careful instruction in research and writing. Additionally, only 200-level classes be designated as GWR.

Courses approved by Academic Council for Core that also are required for a particular major or minor may be used to fulfill both requirements.

Seniors may enroll in Core Program courses to complete Core, major or minor requirements as needed. Seniors may not enroll in Core Program courses for elective purposes until all enrolled underclass students have had the opportunity to select courses during official registration periods in November and April. In this context, seniors include students of senior status and juniors who will achieve senior status at the completion of the current semester.

The Core Program may be satisfied in its entirety by transfer courses (i.e., there is no residency requirement for the Core). Students wishing to satisfy the GWR requirement with an off-campus course must submit a syllabus for evaluation.

Students can satisfy Core AU requirements with transferred courses that are worth at least three credits.

Majors with more than 125 credits for graduation may be allowed to count two courses required of the major in lieu of two courses from the Core. Courses would have to meet the goals for the appropriate AU. Academic Departments may apply to the Core Committee and Academic Council to demonstrate how the major courses satisfy the goals of the AU.

When course requirements for an academic program meet the educational objectives for a Core AU, Academic Departments may petition Academic Council for a waiver of that AU for students completing the program. The course requirements supporting the waiver must be an integral part of the academic program.

Students are required to complete the appropriate level of mathematics, English, and modern/ancient language courses as determined by the College. Once students have completed the appropriate level, they cannot receive credit for taking a lower-level course in the sequence.

The First-Year Seminar may not be substituted for a major or minor course or to waive a requirement for the major or minor.