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The Drury Core: Engaging Our World

Drury is committed to a liberal arts education that equips students with the knowledge and skills necessary to meet the pressing challenges and opportunities that await them in today’s complex and interdependent world. Our general education curriculum, The Drury Core: Engaging Our World, prepares students for personal and professional success by prioritizing applied learning through direct engagement in communities both at home and around the world.

According to the Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U), “liberal education has the strongest impact when students look beyond the classroom to the world’s major questions, asking students to apply their developing analytical skills and ethical judgments to significant problems in the world around them.” To advance these aims, the Drury general education curriculum embraces four modes of engagement. Together, they collectively represent our continuing emphasis on global learning combined with the longstanding goals of a Drury education: a broad exposure to the liberal arts and the development of the key skills of writing, oral communication, critical thinking and sound ethical decision making.

  1. Engagement with Global Challenges

    In the Engaging Our World curriculum, students develop the ability to identify and address the major issues confronting today’s world. Students take an interdisciplinary global studies course (CORE 201) addressing an important global issue, and 6 credits of foreign language. Additionally, global learning is infused across the campus, with all departments offering courses that present disciplinary content situated in a global context. This cross-disciplinary infusion exemplifies AAC&U’s recommendation that global learning should move “to a broader framework that shapes all, or significant parts, of the general education curriculum.”

  2. Engagement with Communities

    The Engaging Our World curriculum requires students to complete two engaged learning experiences. Powerful evidence shows that high impact learning practices, such as service learning, internships, study away/abroad, leadership development and student/faculty research, stimulate gains in critical thinking skills, civic and global awareness, and commitment to intellectual success. The new curriculum integrates these practices into general education in a systematic and intentional way.
  3. Engagement with Diverse Methods, Approaches and Areas of Knowledge

    The Engaging Our World curriculum exposes students to a broad range of knowledge in two central ways. First, students enroll in a thematic First-Year Experience seminar (CORE 101) that combines the development of key academic skills with an exploration of important and interesting topics, taught by faculty with expertise in these areas. Second, students take at least six credit hours the fine arts, humanities, social sciences, and natural and mathematical sciences, in courses carefully designed to develop understanding of that discipline’s a distinct way of understanding, interpreting, or studying the world.

  4. Engagement with Core Skills Necessary for Professional Success, Lifelong Learning, and Ethical Participation in the Global Community

    The Engaging Our World curriculum recognizes that meaningful engagement with the world requires key skills. Development of writing, oral communication and critical thinking—begins in the thematic CORE 101 seminar and continues in the 3-credit Drury Foundations course. To assure mastery of more advanced writing, students also develop proficiency as writers in their major. Students learn the skills for success in and beyond college through personalized advising and mentorship in CORE 103/104. Kinesthetic and wellness skills are developed and cultivated through the EXSP 220 Personal Wellness course. The capacity for sound moral judgment is developed in the junior-level Ethics seminar course.

    Through these four modes—Engagement with Global Challenges, Engagement with Communities, Engagement with Diverse Ways of Knowing, and Engagement with Core Skills— the Engaging Our World curriculum provides Drury students with a robust liberal arts general education that will prepare them for professional careers, engaged citizenship, and a life of learning.