Common Curriculum

The SMU Common Curriculum (CC) is a general education framework that prepares students to be lifelong learners in a rapidly changing, interconnected world. The Common Curriculum is the twenty-first century reboot of the classical university education, challenging students to know the past, understand the present, and build the future.

The CC prepares students for the future by providing educational foundations, resources to grow and opportunities to thrive in any environment.


How do we help our students?

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General Education: Foundations

Foundation requirements ensure all students have the building blocks of a solid, university education, including solid writing and reasoning skills.
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General Education: Breadth

Breadth requirements investigate the problems of the world through diverse intellectual frameworks, allowing students to understand the problems and issues we face, their origins and evolutions, as well as possible solutions.
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Graduation Requirements: Proficiencies & Experiences

Proficiencies and experiences give students the skills they need to succeed in the workplace and the tools they need to work with increasingly diverse colleagues and audiences.


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An education for life

  • A comprehensive liberal arts education that exposes students to multiple ways to frame knowledge and solve problems.
  • Foundation courses make sure all students are ready for a university education.
  • Develops students critical thinking ability in multiple domains.
  • Grounding in Humanities, Arts, Social Sciences, and STEM gives students the interdisciplinary formation to become problem solvers and life-long learners.
  • Breadth courses introduce students to all major subject/disciplines at the university.
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Advantages for students

  • Easy to follow and fulfill.
  • Transfer friendly.
  • Allows for multiple majors/minors.
  • Includes a wide range of classes from across the university.
  • AP and IB can be used to fulfill a range of requirements.
  • Value and learning outcomes clearly described for each component.

Preparation for the workplace

  • Prepares students to work in a globalized society with people from all backgrounds and nations.
  • Encourages students to think beyond the classroom and engage with the world.
  • Provides students solid training and practice in written and oral communication.
  • Develops students critical thinking and problem-solving ability in multiple domains.
  • Provides formation and application in data analysis, technological competence, and ethics.

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