2020-2021 Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog 
    Jul 13, 2024  
2020-2021 Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Core Curriculum Requirements

The Misericordia University Core Curriculum is a comprehensive program in the Arts, Humanities, and Social, Behavioral and Natural Sciences that prepares students to think critically and creatively, to communicate effectively, and to embody the spirit of service. The Core Curriculum is intentional in exposing students to diversity, raising cultural awareness, and shaping them as global citizens. Catholic values as expressed in the charisms of the Sisters of Mercy create the foundation for students to reflect, act ethically and live in relationship with God, humanity and creation. The courses that form the Core Curriculum provide the knowledge and skills that lay the foundation for undergraduate education at Misericordia University.

Core Curriculum Goals

  1. Students will communicate effectively using oral, written and/or artistic presentations.
  2. Students will demonstrate critical thinking and problem solving skills.
  3. Students will demonstrate integrating information and technological literacy.
  4. Students will demonstrate an understanding of the central concepts and ideas of the arts, humanities, and the social, behavioral, and natural sciences.
  5. Students will demonstrate an awareness of ethical issues across disciplines.
  6. Students will demonstrate an awareness of and appreciation of global interdependence and diversity.

All undergraduate students, regardless of major, are required to complete a minimum of 49 credit hours of core courses, as listed below:

Written Communication Requirement

All students must complete:

  1. The University Writing Seminar (3 credits). See the core requirements listed below for where specific departments offer University Writing Seminar (UWS) courses within their curriculum. Successful completion of the UWS course is required prior to beginning the writing intensive courses. These courses also satisfy core requirements in the department in which they are offered. A second UWS course cannot be taken by a student who has already successfully completed another UWS course in a different department. A UWS course from one department cannot be used to grade replace a UWS course taken in another department.
  2. At least two courses identified as writing intensive. Sections that are writing intensive will be indicated with a “W” following the course number on the course schedule. These courses may be offered and taken as part of the core requirements listed below and/or within individual majors/minors.

Behavioral Science Core Curriculum


*Only one Economics course may count towards core


English Core Curriculum


Fine Arts Core Curriculum


History/Political Science Core Curriculum


Mathematics Core Curriculum

All students are required to take two mathematics courses: one from Group A and one from Group B (minimum of 6 course credits required).

Placement into Mathematics Group A courses is determined by a student’s score in the mathematics section of the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT):

  • MTH 120 : SAT Math scores of 470 and below
  • MTH 160 : SAT Math scores of 480-520
  • MTH 165 : SAT Math scores of 530 and above
  • MTH 171 : Required Mathematics Bank A course for Biochemistry, Biology, Chemistry, Computer Science and Mathematics majors.

Mathematics Group B (May be specified by program)


* This course may NOT be taken for credit by students who have previously received credit for MTH 151 or MTH 171 .


Philosophy Core Curriculum

Select one course from Group A, and one course from Group B. NOTE: Either PHL 100  or PHL 151  is a prerequisite for every Group B course.


Religious Studies Core Curriculum

Select one course from Group A and one course from Group B (6 course credits required).


Natural Sciences Core Curriculum

Select one lab science course and one non-lab science course, or two lab science courses (minimum of 7 course credits required).

Courses are listed in sequence when the first course is a prerequisite for the second course. In cases where a lecture course may be taken separately from a laboratory course, both the lecture and laboratory course must be taken together in order to meet the lab science core requirement.

Non-lab courses:


Free Elective Credits: 9 Credits

Any courses can be taken to fulfill the nine credit free elective requirement. It is strongly recommended that students take the free elective courses outside the major.

Information Literacy

Information literacy is a set of abilities requiring individuals to recognize when information is needed and have the ability to locate, evaluate, and use effectively the needed information.

Information literacy also is increasingly important in the contemporary environment of rapid technological change and proliferating information resources. The uncertain quality and expanding quantity of information pose large challenges for society. The sheer abundance of information will not in itself create a more informed citizenry without a complementary cluster of abilities necessary to use information effectively.

Information literacy forms the basis for lifelong learning. It is common to all disciplines, to all learning environments, and to all levels of education. It enables learners to master content and extend their investigations, become more self-directed, and assume greater control over their own learning. An information literate individual is able to:

  • Determine the extent of information needed
  • Access the needed information effectively and efficiently
  • Evaluate information and its sources critically
  • Incorporate selected information into one’s knowledge base
  • Use information effectively to accomplish a specific purpose
  • Understand the economic, legal, and social issues surrounding the use of information, and access and use information ethically and legally