Augustana's Core Curriculum

In today’s world — and certainly tomorrow’s — we’re increasingly challenged to think like innovators and entrepreneurs. Whether we work in health care, business, education, research, public service, the arts or any other industry, as members of the fastest-moving society in the history of time, we need to be entrepreneurial. We need to be nimble and ready for change. We need to be innovative critical thinkers — able to develop complex solutions for complex challenges. And, most importantly, we need to be able to communicate those solutions effectively. As our world becomes smaller, we need to be able to think bigger and broader. And, we need to do so with a global perspective. As access to information becomes more prevalent and more sophisticated, we need to know how to interpret data in strategic, analytical and ethical ways.

To do this, we need a tool kit designed to help us navigate uncharted waters and explore new terrain. We need a foundation that will help us prepare for jobs that don’t even exist today jobs that are the solutions to problems we haven’t yet even identified. For many of us, that foundation is what will empower us to chart our own pathways — to build and create businesses, brands, codes, scores, apps, cures, theories, solutions, designs, works, programs, networks and more — on our own, as entrepreneurs.

Traditionally called the Liberal Arts, Augustana University's curriculum teaches 21st-century skills. AU's Core Curriculum is higher education designed for tomorrow’s innovators and entrepreneurs and prepares students for a lifetime of success.

Augustana's Educational Experience

At Augustana, students will begin their academic journey at AU with a 2-semester, integrative First-Year Seminar (FYS).

From there, students will build their foundational knowledge in the humanities, natural sciences and social sciences. Along the way, they will be challenged to examine thoroughly life’s foundational questions through conversation and academic inquiry as they explore faith, engage in service and achieve an education of enduring worth.

As students move through Augustana's Core Curriculum, they will discover their passions and explore your vocation — the career to which they are specially drawn. If they haven’t already, students will declare your major(s) and minor(s). They will work through core and major requirements concurrently to achieve the minimum 124 credit hours needed to graduate.

AU’s 45-credit Core Curriculum is summarized in the acronym SOPHIA, the Greek word for “wisdom,” and represents the categories of Science, Orientation, Perspectives, Humanities, Intersections and the Arts. It also honors the primacy of the word in the Lutheran tradition, logos and recognizes the sacred wisdom of God. Nine SOPHIA courses are required. The remaining courses are "selective." Selective courses are a group of eight courses from which students will select a minimum of six courses.