The purpose of the pre-1800 requirement is to demonstrate to students the importance of the past.

Across a wide range of disciplinary and interdisciplinary approaches including those of the Humanities, Arts, and Humanistic Social Sciences the study of the past broadens our awareness of human conditions and experience, enables us to situate the present in an historical trajectory, and provides us with resources for crafting our future.

Designation Criteria

In courses meeting this requirement, at least 50% of the course topics and materials are drawn from before 1800 CE.


Courses satisfying this requirement develop in students two or more of the following outcomes:

  1. A critical awareness of how the past informs the present, providing an understanding of the conditions that made possible the break with or the persistence of social structures, organizational hierarchies, artistic productions, or patterns of thought.

  2. A critical awareness of artistic productions, social structures, organizational hierarchies, political economies, or patterns of thought and practices that characterize historical communities and the experiences of peoples of the past.

  3. A critical awareness of the past as a resource for imagining new ways of thinking, acting, organizing society, and forming community.

  4. The critical skills of impartially, reasonably, accurately, and fairly understanding and representing a variety of ways of thinking and acting and of engaging with unfamiliar worldviews, ideas, and practices, in turn enabling students to responsibly navigate the pluralistic world of the present

Contact the Core Program
Johnson Hall

Room 115

Edmond Johnson
Director of Advising, Core Program Coordinator, Affiliated Faculty in Music
Office: Johnson Hall 108