The Core Curriculum provides the foundation of every Samford undergraduate student’s liberal arts education. These courses of 22 credits total require students to read challenging works and place them in conversation with each other, to write and speak confidently and persuasively, to recognize the depth of biblical scholarship and tradition, and to pay attention to overall health and wellness. In short, the Core courses transcend any one department or major. The Core grew out of many interdisciplinary discussions and explorations of Great Books programs at Columbia University, University of Chicago, and others, and also out of best practices for student learning in critical skills, as recognized by the American Association of Colleges and Universities. The Core also reflects the Christian mission at the heart of the university. The Core has been a significant part of every entering freshman’s academic experience since 1997.

Core Texts

Core Texts is a two-semester course sequence taken by all Samford University students. Here students survey great works of literature, philosophy, history, and theology, and also learn why these works matter for the 21st century. Fall semester in University Core Texts I, students are introduced to great thinkers from Greece, Rome, Early Christianity, the Middle Ages, and the Renaissance. Spring semester University Core Texts II takes them through the Protestant Reformation, the Scientific Revolution, the Enlightenment, and the ideological conflicts of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The goal is to equip students with an intellectual narrative that illuminates important thinkers from the past so that they are better equipped to navigate the complicated marketplace of ideas today.

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Core Writing

If students are to succeed in life, they must be able to write and speak effectively. Employers consistently rate good communication skills among the most desirable qualities of their employees. The Core Writing courses are designed to help students develop and refine these vital skills.

Students will meet the following course objectives:

  • Writing
    • Conceive, outline, and produce written assignments in an academic style
    • Research, identify, summarize, analyze, and synthesize scholarly resources for implementation in written assignments
    • Adapt purpose/argument, structure, and language in written work to various assignment objectives
    • Demonstrate metacognitive awareness of writing processes
  • Speech
    • Develop and deliver oral presentations using academic language and rhetorical style
    • Structure and adapt presentations according to various assignment objectives
    • Create and engage multimedia presentations for use in oral presentations

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Biblical Foundations

Biblical Foundations, UCBF 101, provides an introduction to the Christian Scriptures (Old and New Testaments) including their contents, their historical backgrounds, literary genres, and theological and ethical themes. The course reflects the biblical basis of Samford’s Core Values and provides a foundation for understanding the place of the Jewish and Christian Scriptures in human culture. The course stresses the relevance of the Bible for contemporary Christian faith and practice.

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Concepts of Fitness and Health

Concepts of Fitness and Health emphasizes the components of a healthy lifestyle. The principles of fitness including cardiovascular health, muscular strength, muscular endurance, flexibility and body composition are discussed and applied through classroom and physical activities. Other topics such as nutrition, weight management, and injury management are discussed. Individuals registered with Disability Services will meet with the appropriate individuals for activity consideration.