General Education

Interdisciplinary Programs

Academic Units

Academic Programs

Cluster Two: Arts and Humanities

Dr. Margaret M. Mulrooney, Coordinator

Cluster 1 Cluster 3 Cluster 5
Cluster 2 Cluster 4


Cluster Two Structure
Cluster Two Learning Objectives


Cluster Two shows students what it means to live lives enriched by reflection, imagination, and creativity. It does so by offering each individual a multidisciplinary experience within the arts and humanities, those areas of endeavor that humans have long valued for their intrinsic worth and that invite a deeper appreciation of the human experience. The broadly stated goals for Cluster Two are:
Cluster Two Structure
Students complete nine credits by choosing one course from each of three groups: Human Questions and Contexts; Visual and Performing Arts; and Literature.

Group One: Human Questions and Contexts
Students will take one course from the list below. GAMST 200 takes an interdisciplinary approach to questions about American identity and shows how they reflect a complex interplay of cultural, historical, religious, and ideological perspectives. The GANTH and GHIST courses introduce students to the great cultures of the world by surveying the common patterns of experience that characterized Western, Middle Eastern, Asian, African Meso- and South American societies in the past. The GHUM courses are interdisciplinary, in-depth explorations of specific topics, cultures, periods or themes. The GPHIL and GREL courses explore the great inquiries into human existence and the ways different cultures across different time periods constructed their responses to questions concerning humans' existence and their relationship to nature, ultimate reality and the universe. Thus all of the courses in Group 1 emphasize central issues about the human condition and ways of studying values and beliefs as they are shaped by class, gender, race, historical events, philosophy and religion.

Choose one of the following:
     GAMST 200. Introduction to American Studies
     ANTH 205. Buried Cities, Lost Tribes: The Rise and Fall of Early Human
          Societies
     GHIST 101. World History to 1500
     GHIST 102. World History Since 1500
     GHUM 102. God, Meaning, and Morality
     GHUM 250. Foundations of Western Culture
          (Topics vary by section. Examples include: Ancient Greece, Rome)
     GHUM 251. Modern Perspectives
          (Topics vary by section. Examples include: The Enlightenment, Romanticism,
          and Human Rights)
     GHUM 252. Cross-Cultural Perspectives
           (Topics vary by section. Examples include: East Asia, West Africa, Latin
          American Cultures, Islamic Civilization)
     GPHIL 101. Introduction to Philosophy
     GREL 101. Religions of the World

Group Two: Visual and Performing Arts
Students will take one course from the list below. The art history surveys introduce students to the visual arts (whose history often has been interconnected with developments in music, dance and theatre/film); these surveys are organized chronologically, but focus distinctly on artistic perception and experience. The global music surveys explore history and the arts through the study of music: its development, aesthetics, forms and styles, and its context within the cultural communities that produced it. GART 200 and GMUS 200 are introductions to art or music in general culture; GTHEA 210 studies theatre as an art form including acting, directing, design, costuming, lighting; GMUS 203 explores America's musical landscape and examines the interconnections among music, art, and literature in historical periods.

In all Group 2 courses,students will examine the innate human aesthetic sense, sources of art and music appreciation, and the creation of art as both an expression of human creativity and a means of giving meaning to the world. Thus all the courses focus on the key areas of human creativity and expressiveness through the visual and performing arts - imaginative outpourings which have form, structure, meaning and aesthetic appeal that all students can come to appreciate.

Choose one of the following:
     GART 200. Art in General Culture
     GARTH 205. Survey of World Art I: Prehistoric to Renaissance
     GARTH 206. Survey of World Art II: Renaissance to Modern
     GMUS 200. Music in General Culture
     GMUS 203. Music in America
     GMUS 206. Introduction to Global Music
     GTHEA 210. Introduction to Theatre

Group Three: Literature
Students will choose a course from the list below. The literature surveys provide students with extensive reading experiences of representative genres and authors and various critical approaches to literary texts, as well as opportunities to explore the complex ways that the literature both reflects and helps change or create the cultural and intellectual contexts of the times in which they are written. Students are expected to learn strategies for reading and interpreting any literary text so that they come to deepen their appreciation of the aesthetics, rhetorical strategies and meaning of a range of literary texts. Through the humanistic study of literature, students will also obtain a better understanding of themselves and their own culture as well as those of others.

Choose one of the following:
     GENG 235. Survey of English Literature: From Beowulf to the 18th Century
     GENG 236. Survey of English Literature: 18th Century to Modern
     GENG 239. Studies in World Literature
     GENG 247. Survey of American Literature: From the Beginning to the Civil War
     GENG 248. Survey of American Literature: From the Civil War to the Modern
          Period
     GENG 260. Survey of African-American Literature
     GHUM 200. Great Works
          (Topics vary by section. Examples include: German Literature in Translation;
          Speculative Fiction; Western Classics)

The courses in Group 3 are designated as "writing-infused." Students will write a minimum of 5000 words (about 15 pages double-spaced in a standard font) distributed among five separate, graded assignments. The courses thus afford students extensive opportunities to produce various genres of academic writing, as well as to develop more engaged and sophisticated reading strategies through exposure to interesting and thought-provoking texts.

Cluster Two Learning Objectives
After completing Group 1, Human Questions and Contexts, students will be able to:

After completing Group 2, Visual and Performing Arts, students will be able to:
After completing Group 3, Literature, students will be able to:


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