The university offers undergraduate students an education that prepares them to pursue truth, to give compassionate service, and to participate in the creation of a more just and humane world. Guided by this mission, our essential learning goals for undergraduates include the following:
- Foundational proficiencies: A specified level of proficiency, normally by the end of the first year at Dominican, in designated foundational skills and abilities (including critical reading, writing, speaking, visual literacy, foreign language, quantitative reasoning, computer applications, information literacy, and research methods), and enhanced through subsequent course work.
- Areas of study: An appreciation of and a growing ability to show how key areas of study including philosophy, theology, history, social sciences, literature, fine arts, and natural sciences, individually and/or together, contribute to the pursuit of truth, the offer of compassionate service, and the creation of a more just and humane world.
- Catholic, Dominican, and other religious traditions: Sustained critical study of and engagement with Catholic and Dominican traditions, broadly understood, along with other religious traditions and dimensions of culture.
- Diverse perspectives: An increasing capacity to engage diverse perspectives and to bring diverse modes of inquiry to the critical investigation of significant questions, topics, or issues, and to adjudicate between them in a deliberate and reflective manner.
- Major field: A significant level of mastery in a major field of specialization, demonstrated through successful achievement of each of the essential learning goals outlined by that discipline, including a significant research project or creative investigation in the major.
- Connecting major and core: An increasing capacity to discern and articulate connections between information and ideas across the curriculum, including a capacity to situate one’s major field within the larger field of liberal learning represented especially by the core curriculum.
- Experiential learning: Sustained direct experience and critical, respectful engagement with diverse ideas, practices, and contexts, especially through study abroad, domestic study, and community-based course work.
- Connecting experience and course work: An enhanced capacity to integrate experience outside the university with academic course work, especially through service learning and internships in one’s major field.
- A personal stance: An increasing capacity to develop and articulate a coherent, informed, and ethically responsible personal stance, able to meet significant challenges likely to be encountered in one’s studies, and in one’s personal, career, and civic life.
- Participation: An ability to contribute to the college and university as communities of intellectual and moral discourse and decision making, in preparation for lifelong learning and participation in communities beyond Dominican.
The undergraduate curriculum consists of three overlapping components:
- Core: A sequence of courses that provide the student with secure foundations, breadth of intellectual vision and integration of the undergraduate academic experience;
- Major: An opportunity to pursue one area of knowledge or discipline in greater depth; and
- Electives: Special forays into that zone of freedom that characterizes liberal learning.
Only by completing an integrated course of study such as this one can a college graduate claim to be “liberally” educated. The word “liberal” has its roots in the Latin word that means “free.” From what and for what can a liberal education free the student? A liberal education frees the student from dependence on direct personal experience as the sole basis for ideas and opinions about the world. A liberal education offers not just knowledge—of the past and present, the self and others—but also the tools needed to acquire new knowledge when faced with new situations and an intellectual context within which to place that new knowledge. Thus a liberal education can help free the student from fears that are quite common today: What will happen to me if the work I’m trained to do becomes obsolete? Will I be able to adapt to a new workplace, a new neighborhood or city, a new culture? A liberal education, furthermore, can make one less susceptible to the claims and manipulation of powerful persons and institutions, as well as to the partial, piecemeal view of experience too often imparted by the modern world. A liberal education, that is, provides students the means necessary to approach problems—private, professional, and public—from a wide variety of sources, using a mind made supple and responsive by the practice of a wide variety of ways to learn.
Bachelor of Arts (BA) and Bachelor of Science (BS) Degree
- Each student must complete 124 semester hours of credit, four semester hours of which may be in physical education and health. A semester course may carry from one to eight semester hours of credit, according to the judgment of the department. The minimum requirement for full-time status in any one semester is 12 semester hours of credit, and the maximum permitted is 18 semester hours. See Academic Regulations for the rule governing an exception to the normal course load.
- Each student must attain a cumulative grade point average of at least 2.00 based on all Dominican course work.
- Each student must complete a major field of concentration consisting of no fewer than 24 and no more than 56 semester hours of credit. No more than 42 semester hours in a single discipline may be required for a major field of concentration. No more than 54 semester hours of credit in one discipline may be offered by the student for the degree. The following information should be noted in regard to the 54 semester hour rule: a) courses that are cross-listed count in both disciplines; and b) accounting and business administration count as one discipline, as do sociology and criminology, and theology and pastoral ministry.
A minimum grade of C- must be earned in courses for a major or minor, and a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.00 is required for completion of a major or minor. The satisfactory/fail grade option may NOT be used for any course submitted for a major or minor unless otherwise indicated in department major requirements.
Degree With Honors
Honors degrees are awarded on the basis of the cumulative grade point average of all baccalaureate course work taken at Dominican. For a baccalaureate degree summa cum laude, a student must have a cumulative grade point average of 3.90; for a baccalaureate degree magna cum laude, 3.70; for baccalaureate degree cum laude, 3.50. A student must complete a minimum of 62 credit hours at Dominican in order to qualify for these honors distinctions.
Course Intensification Option
Students may propose a special project for earning one additional semester hour credit in one course in which they are already enrolled in a given fall or spring semester. Summer courses are not eligible for the course intensification option. The course must be listed in the undergraduate course schedule for three or more credit hours. The student is responsible for completing a course intensification application (available in the Office of the Registrar) and obtaining written permission from the instructor.
Approved applications with a drop/add form signed by the student’s advisor must be filed in the Office of the Registrar by the end of the fourth week of the semester. Students who request the course intensification option may not alter this request once it has been approved—i.e., students may not drop the single credit. The course intensification option requires additional student work, and under no circumstances should it be considered a substitute for regular course work. Students will receive the same grade for the entire course, including the additional work completed as part of the course intensification.
Students may take no more than one course per semester with the intensification option. Some academic programs may require majors to take certain courses using the intensification option. Consult departmental program descriptions for more details.
One hundred twenty-four semester hours are required for graduation. A certain number of these hours must be earned in residency.
Students may meet Dominican’s minimum residency requirement in any one of the following ways:
- Complete any 90 semester hours at Dominican University;
- Complete from 45 to 89 semester hours at Dominican University, including the last 15 semester hours applied toward the degree; or
- Complete the last 34 semester hours for the degree at Dominican University.
Up to 68 semester hours are accepted in transfer from community colleges and up to 90 semester hours from four-year colleges and universities.
Each department will determine the number of semester hours in the major and minor that must be taken at Dominican.
Field of Major Concentration
No later than the end of the junior year, students must choose a field of major concentration. Certification by a department is registered on a major application, which must be signed by a major professor of the department and filed with the Rosary College of Arts and Sciences.
A major course (required) in which a grade of D or F is earned must be repeated. A minimum grade point average of 2.00 is required in the major. It is the responsibility of the student to make certain that degree requirements are met.
Field of Minor Concentration
Students may elect an optional field of minor concentration. A department offering a minor may require no fewer than 18 semester hours and no more than 24 semester hours. The requirements for a minor are listed in the Courses of Instruction section of this bulletin under each discipline offering a minor area of concentration.
Interdepartmental Major or Minor
Students choosing an interdepartmental major or minor may devise programs suited to their particular needs and interests. Each student, in consultation with a committee of faculty members from the departments involved, submits a written plan of study, including a detailed rationale for the proposed major or minor and for the courses selected. If the plan is approved by the committee and the dean of the Rosary College of Arts and Sciences, it will be filed with the Rosary College of Arts and Sciences. Interdepartmental major or minor plans of study must be approved prior to completion of 90 semester hours.
Dominican University graduates may add a second major/minor to their Dominican record using the requirements in the bulletin of their original major/minor if completed within two years of receiving the bachelor’s degree.
Dominican University graduates who wish to add an additional major/minor more than two calendar years after receiving the bachelor’s degree must fulfill the major/minor requirements in effect at the time they return to complete their work.
Second Bachelor’s Degree
Students holding a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited institution may receive a second bachelor’s degree from Dominican University provided that:
- All university general education requirements, foundation and core requirements, and major requirements are met;
- At least 34 semester hours are earned in residence at Dominican University; and
- A cumulative grade point average of 2.00 is earned in all Dominican course work.
Students returning to Dominican after an interruption of more than five years are subject to bulletin provisions for the general education requirements as well as major and minor requirements in effect at the time they re-enter. (However, every effort will be made to count earlier courses in the way most beneficial to fulfilling current requirements.)
Students returning to Dominican after an interruption of fewer than five years can use the bulletin in effect at the time of their original admission to Dominican or any later bulletin. Returning students who have attended other colleges or universities during their absence must reapply to Dominican. Upon readmission, they may select a bulletin in effect up to five years prior to the term they reenter, providing they were enrolled during the bulletin year of their choice.
Academic Advising Program
Advising is teaching and learning for vocation. First in importance and sequence for advising are not the questions, What courses do I have to take? What am I required to do? Instead, advising should begin with and frequently revisit more fundamental questions: Why am I in the university? What should I study, and why? What will it mean for my life, for my future, for my community, and society? Advising explores the meaning, purpose, and effect of university learning. Assisting students in exploring and selecting major fields, selecting and scheduling courses, internships, and a host of other more practical functions are built upon insights students derive from beginning with and revisiting the reflective questions that go to the heart of each student’s educational project.
Each undergraduate student has a dedicated faculty advisor—initially the student’s freshman seminar professor, and later, a professor from the student’s chosen major field. Faculty advisors and students are assisted by the Rosary College of Arts and Sciences Advising Office staff.
Students at Dominican are able to exercise a large measure of personal choice in curriculum because of the quality of the university’s academic advising. The university recognizes that while students hold the primary responsibility for their education and hence for their program choices, the advisor’s help is crucial in developing an informed basis for responsible and expedient academic decisions.
Students may not register for courses online without receiving an advising clearance and may not register in person in the Office of the Registrar without an advisor’s signature. Please note that successful degree completion is the sole responsibility of the student.
The Office of Academic Success Services and Diversity is committed to supporting and enhancing the academic success of students, discerning impediments to success, and developing means to remove those impediments for undergraduates in general and for particular segments of the student body, including students at risk and multicultural students. The office assesses the academic, social, cultural, and economic needs of undergraduate students within the scope of the overall work of the Rosary College of Arts and Sciences Advising Office, and develops and implements support services and programmatic initiatives to address students’ needs.
Academic Success Services assists students as needed in designing an Academic Recovery Plan or an Academic Preparation Plan. These services include monitoring Warning Notices, Focus Reports, Scholars’ Hour, and students on academic probation.
The office promotes the university’s vision of an inclusive campus community that welcomes a diverse population and honors each individual’s heritage and experience so that all students, faculty, staff, families, and visitors feel welcomed and valued.
Career Advising Program
The career advising program in Career Development aspires to create in students a values-centered work ethic, to educate them to become productive and compassionate citizens, and to equip them with tools to make satisfying career and life plans. Services available to students include assistance with selecting a major, help finding part-time jobs and internships, and full-time job search support.
Career Development provides career decision-making assistance, job search workshops, résumé writing, interviewing techniques, cover letter assistance and updated career resources to students and alumnae/i of Dominican University. The office interacts with business, industry, education, and government to develop a network of employers for full-time and internship opportunities. The office hosts on-campus interviews, practice job interviews, a business etiquette dinner, and both on- and off-campus job/internships fairs.
Active teacher candidates who complete their student teaching through Dominican University can establish a credential file with this office. A job bulletin listing full-time and part-time teaching vacancies is posted online. Additional information about Career Development is available on the website at www.careers.dom.edu.
Dominican University offers a wide variety of study abroad programs, viewing these opportunities as an integral part of a student’s undergraduate education. In Europe, Asia, Latin America, and Africa, students are perfecting their language skills and/or studying the culture, politics, art, literature, and social systems of the target country. In addition to their course work, students in study abroad programs participate in a wide variety of cultural experiences and excursions and have the opportunity for independent travel. The goal of study abroad is to give students a broader knowledge and understanding of the world and of other peoples and also a new sense of self-reliance and independence.
Year-long or semester programs
Semester in London, England — Offered during the fall semester only, the London program is open to juniors and seniors in all majors. With a focus on students’ experiencing as well as studying about Britain, the curriculum consists of two parts: an interdisciplinary course in British life and culture and a tutorial/independent study course, generally in the student’s major. The interdisciplinary course includes lectures by British experts in a variety of fields, weekly day trips, overnights to Stratford-on-Avon and to Bath, and an eight-day study tour to Edinburgh, York, and the Lake District.
Study Abroad in Milan, Italy — This affiliate program with IES Abroad in the fashion, financial, and commercial capital of Italy is intended for students interested in a semester or an academic year program in Italy. Students live with Italian university students and/or young professionals. Students take a variety of language and area studies courses in art history, cinema, theatre, history, literature, music, and political science at the IES center in Milan or at Milan’s major universities. All courses are taught in Italian. Advanced students of Italian can apply for internships with professionals in any number of subject areas. In addition to Italian language, apparel students can take area courses taught in English and one or two fashion courses at the Istituto di Moda Burgo.
Study Abroad in Nantes, France — This affiliate program with IES Abroad is intended for students who wish to study in France for a semester (fall or spring) or for an academic year. Nantes is a medium-sized city in western France from which students can easily travel to Paris and other areas in France and Europe. Students participate in a one-and-a-half-week orientation and language-intensive session. They then enroll in a variety of language and area studies courses offered either at the IES Abroad Center or, for students at the advanced level, at the Université de Nantes. Students can also take advanced courses in business and management with the faculty at Université de Nantes Institut d’Economie et du Management de Nantes - Institut d’Administration des Entreprises (IEMN-IAE). All courses are taught in French by university professors. Internships in local schools, businesses, not-for-profit associations, and regional government organizations are available.
Study Abroad in Salamanca, Spain — This affiliate program with AIFS (American Institute of Foreign Studies) offers one or two semesters of study at the oldest and most famous university of Spain. Students register for classes in language, area studies, or other fields at either the University of Salamanca or the AIFS program, depending upon their language preparation. All courses are conducted in Spanish. Students live with a host family. Through excursions planned by AIFS and independent travel, students have the opportunity to explore Spain and Europe.
Study Abroad in Stellenbosch, South Africa — This affiliate program with AIFS (American Institute of Foreign Studies) offers one or two semesters at the Stellenbosch University, South Africa’s second-oldest university. Students register for classes taught in English at the university. Students can choose from a wide variety of subjects, including African area studies, South African and African history and politics, theatre arts, and South African literature.
Study Abroad in Limerick, Ireland — This affiliate program with AIFS (American Institute of Foreign Studies) offers juniors and seniors the opportunity to take courses at the University of Limerick for one or two semesters. They can choose from a wide variety of courses in the College of Business, College of Humanities, College of Informatics and Electronic Engineering, and the College of Science. Students also are encouraged to take courses offered in Irish studies. The program includes a three-day excursion to London and trips to the West of Ireland and to Dublin. Students live in single rooms in University townhouses on campus. Students in all majors are welcome to apply.
Study Abroad in Blackfriars/Oxford — This program is open to junior honors students only. Blackfriars Hall is run by Dominican friars within the Oxford University system. Students participate in the traditional Oxbridge tutorial teaching, in which they meet twice a week with a tutor to discuss an essay. Topics for tutorial projects include philosophy, theology, English literature, and Church history with optional classes in Latin, New Testament Greek, and Biblical Hebrew. Accommodations are within walking distance of Blackfriars.
Study Abroad in Salzburg, Austria — This affiliate program with AIFS (American Institute of Foreign Studies) offers students with or without prior knowledge of German the opportunity to spend one or two semesters in Salzburg, Austria. All students must study German, along with a variety of classes taught in English, including political science, business/economics, art, literature, and music. Included in the program fee are several excursions, including ones to Munich, Germany, and to Vienna and Innsbruck, in Austria. Students have the option of living in a dormitory or with a host family. Students in all majors are welcome to apply.
Summer in Florence — The Florence program is a six-week study abroad opportunity intended for students interested in Italian language, art, culture, and history. As the center of Renaissance civilization, Florence offers students opportunities to become acquainted with the artistic, architectural, literary and cultural achievements of Italy’s past while living in a dynamic and fashionable city. Florence is centrally located, giving students easy access to other important Italian cities and places of cultural interest.
China: Modernization and Tradition along the Silk Road — The next major power and the fastest-growing country in the world, China has a 4,000-year-old civilization. China has long been involved with travel and trade along the Silk Road, which stretches from China to Rome. During the two-week study trip, students visit the cultural, political and commercial centers of China and the Silk Road, including Beijing, Xi’an, Shanghai, and Xinjiang. This three-credit course is available to students interested in the politics, culture, society, and economics of China’s past and future. Classes are held at Dominican both before and after the trip.
Paris: Essentials of French Fashion — This 6-credit course for apparel majors and minors provides the opportunity to spend one month in Paris, the fashion capital of the world. Students take all course work at the Paris American Academy. The intensive course consists of an overview of the French fashion industry, an opportunity to become immersed in a specialization (design, couture, merchandizing, and communication) from a French fashion perspective, and a hands-on introduction to the French culture and language. The course is conducted in English.
El Salvador: Human Rights, Public Health, and Globalization — This course explores the ways in which El Salvador’s social, political, and economic structures shape the health and well-being of the population. Exploring themes of public health, social and economic development, globalization, gender, and human rights, students will learn about and meet with different social actors and interested parties, including nongovernmental organizations, politicians, hospital workers, doctors and nurses, and community activists.
Literary London and Beyond — This optional 1-credit study abroad component is offered in conjunction with English 247. Literary London is a nine-day study tour of London, Canterbury, and Windsor, intended to complement texts read in English 247. Students visit places associated with William Shakespeare, Geoffrey Chaucer, Charles Dickens, Samuel Pepys, Samuel Johnson, James Boswell, T.S. Eliot, and Thomas Gray.
Rome Interim Program: The Art of Renaissance and Baroque Rome — This 3-credit program takes place in January during the winter semester break. The program consists of three phases: 1) setting up the historical context of the sites that will be visited in Rome (this takes place at Dominican prior to departure); 2) the actual tour of Rome, where students will visit the major Renaissance and Baroque sites as well as ancient sites, such as the Coliseum and the Roman Forum; 3) a final meeting at Dominican upon return. The program is conducted in English.
Ghana: A Gateway to Africa — This 1- to 3-credit study abroad program occurs during the spring semester. On-campus classroom sessions and orientations are followed by 14 days of travel in the West African country of Ghana in May. While there, participants experience Ghana’s political development and visit Parliament, as well as have lunch with selected members of Parliament. Participants also discover Ghana’s rich history and culture traveling to the different regions, exploring the timeless art of Kente weaving, visiting the Manhyia Palace, where they view the legendary Golden Stool, and touring 14th century slave dungeons along the coast of Ghana. In addition, participants enjoy lectures at two of the largest universities in Ghana and learn about traditional religion, Muslim and Christian faiths, and how they have shaped Ghana. The study tour provides experiences of Ghana’s natural beauty with trips to Wli waterfalls and Kakum National Park. Lastly, participants also spend a day with selected hosts, experiencing everyday life with a Ghanaian family. Students are required to keep a journal of their experiences and write a term paper. The course is conducted in English.
Service Learning Programs
El Salvador: Election Observation and Democratic Participation — In this course students learn in depth about the political, social, and economic reality of El Salvador and contribute to its democratic process. Democracy depends on a transparent process, and the presence of international observers can help guarantee such transparency. This service learning abroad course is incorporated into an electoral international observer mission in El Salvador.
Cuernavaca, Mexico — International service learning makes a unique contribution to building global awareness, global partnerships, and world peace. In partnership with the Cuernavaca Center for Intercultural Dialogue on Development, Dominican students do service with the people of Cuernavaca while learning about the cultural, societal, historical, economic, political, and religious realities of Mexico. Students will have opportunities to interact with indigenous artisans, community workers, and local social justice advocates. This week-long intensive, 1-credit study abroad course takes place during the January interim.
For complete information on all programs, contact the Director of International Studies.
Internships enable students to gain appropriate work experience in their field and to integrate their academic course work with professional preparation. By completing an internship, students can better understand the career opportunities offered by their major and establish more specific career goals.
Students entering their junior or senior year of study, having fulfilled any internship prerequisites set up by the department, are eligible to apply to their department for an internship experience. A minimum cumulative career grade point average of 2.50 is required. Transfer students must have completed at least 15 semester hours at Dominican before applying for the internship, and students enrolled in certificate programs should complete the internship at the end of their program of study.
The internship experience is governed by a contract between the student, the faculty coordinator, and the employment supervisor. This contract must be approved by the department in which the internship is being taken and by the career development office. An internship may be taken only in the student’s major field of study, for one to eight semester hours of credit. The student may register for an internship in no more than two semesters. Credit hours earned in an internship will be applied toward the 124 semester hours required for a bachelor’s degree. The internship hours do not satisfy the total semester hours required for completion of a major or a minor area of concentration.
Prior to the start of an internship, students should consult first with their academic advisor or with the chairperson of the relevant department and then with the career development office. Registration for an internship requires the approval of an academic advisor, an internship application, and a course registration form, which should be submitted to the Office of the Registrar no later than three weeks after the start of the semester.
Employer sites and internships must be approved by the faculty supervisor as worthy of academic credit. Special regulations apply to the internship program, and information about these regulations as well as currently available internship opportunities may be obtained from the career development office.
Service learning is a method of teaching that combines community service with academic instruction as it focuses on critical, reflective thinking and civic responsibility. Service learning involves students in organized community service that is directly linked to the curriculum and that addresses local community needs. This learning experience provides multiple benefits to the students, including the enhancement of course-related academic skills, further development of critical thinking and social analysis skills, and opportunities for meaningful commitment to and civic engagement with the broader community.
Service learning courses are designated in the course schedule by the sentence “Includes off-campus service hours.” These courses engage the entire class in service and reflection and fully integrate service into the learning and understanding of the course content. Another service learning option can be self-initiated through an agreement between the professor, the student, and the service learning office. This course carries one semester hour of credit. For additional information, contact the Service Learning Center.
Undergraduate Research and Creative Investigations (URCI)
Dominican University offers students opportunities to engage in undergraduate scholarly activities that go beyond class assignments. The Office of Undergraduate Research and Creative Investigations (URCI) promotes undergraduate student-faculty collaborative research and scholarship. It administers a variety of initiatives to support undergraduate students involved in scholarly projects in all disciplines. Students learn valuable research skills for different disciplines by taking courses taught within each department. Students can also earn course credit for working with a faculty mentor on a research project or creative investigation that is completed independently—not as part of a class assignment. A uniform course number (e.g, Biol 195, ART 395 ) has been established to designate participation in independent undergraduate research/creative activities across all departments at Dominican. Students must obtain prior approval from a faculty mentor before they can register for any of these independent research courses. Each course can be completed for variable credit hours (one-three) and can be repeated for two semesters at each class level. Students are encouraged to present their independent scholarly and creative work at the annual Exposition of Undergraduate Research and Creative Investigations, which is held each spring.
Dominican University offers counseling and other academic support services to students who have been away from college for a number of years or who wish to begin college work some years after high school graduation. Interaction between faculty, students, and career advising staff helps returning students to develop new academic and career possibilities and to become aware of new avenues for personal growth. For adult students who have acquired academic experience outside the classroom, credit by examination is obtained through the College Level Examination Program (CLEP). After completing three courses at Dominican, adult students may also apply for academic course equivalency (ACE) credit. Academic course equivalency credit is not awarded to students holding a bachelor’s degree.
Guidelines for applying for ACE credit are available in the Office of the Dean of the Rosary College of Arts and Sciences. A maximum of 28 semester hours of credit, as many as 12 of which may be in the major, is granted through credit by examination, ACE credit, or both. Academic course equivalency and CLEP petitions must be submitted prior to completion of 90 semester hours.
Concordia University/Dominican University Exchange
Under a cooperative exchange plan, full-time Dominican University students may take, at Concordia University and for no additional cost, one or two courses per semester in subjects that complement courses in the Dominican curriculum. (Students majoring in music may take more than two.) Students need to register both at Concordia University (this should be done first to confirm that there is room in the course) and at Dominican. The exchange agreement does not cover special fees for music lessons, laboratory courses, etc.; students are responsible for these costs.
Concordia University is located one-half mile east of Dominican University’s Main Campus and across from the Priory Campus.