The Curriculum

The Chicago curriculum has three components: general education require-ments, a concentration program, and electives. General education require-ments are described below. Concentrations are described in detail in the Concentrations and Courses section of the catalog. Students construct their own program of electives in consultation with their College advisers and faculty counselors. Credit for forty-two quarter courses is required for the undergraduate degree. Courses or credit used to meet one requirement may not also be used to meet another requirement in the degree program. General education courses should be completed by the end of the second year.

General Education

Humanities, Civilization Studies, and the Arts (6 quarters)

An essential part of general education consists of learning how to appreciate and analyze texts intellectually, historically, and aesthetically. As part of their general education requirement, students at Chicago learn how to interpret literary, philosophical, and historical texts in depth; how to identify significant intellectual problems posed by those texts; and how to discuss and to write about them perceptively and persuasively. In addition, students learn how to study texts and other objects within a specific cultural and chronological frame. Finally, they learn the details of studying a particular visual or performing art form. Within these requirements, each student has considerable choice in designing a program of study.

Students take a total of six quarters in the humanities and in civilization studies–at least two from the humanities sequences on the interpretation of historical, literary, and philosophical texts (see section A below), at least one in the dramatic, musical, or visual arts (see section B below), and at least two from a civilization studies sequence (see section C below).

A. Interpretation of Historical, Literary, and Philosophical Texts. All humanities courses that meet general education requirements engage students in the pleasure and challenge of humanistic works through the close reading of a broad range of literary, historical, and philosophical texts. These are not survey courses; rather, they work to establish methods for appreciating and analyzing the meaning and power of exemplary texts. The courses concentrate on writing skills by including special tutorial sessions devoted to the students' writing.

The different core sequences give students the opportunity to focus on a range of issues and texts. Once students begin a sequence, they are expected to remain in the same sequence. A three-quarter sequence in humanities is recommended for students preparing for medical school and for those students who expect to concentrate in the humanities.

Humanities 11000-11100-11200. Readings in World Literature

Humanities 11500-11600-11700. Philosophical Perspectives on the Humanities

Humanities 12000-12100-12200. Greek Thought and Literature

Humanities 12300-12400-12500. Human Being and Citizen

Humanities 14000-14100-14200. Reading Cultures: Collection, Travel, Exchange

Humanities 16000-16100-16200. Media Aesthetics: Image, Sound, Text

B. Dramatic, Musical, and Visual Arts. The following courses provide an introduction to methods for analyzing, comprehending, and appreciating works of dramatic, musical, or visual art by examining their formal vocabularies and how these vocabularies are used to create meaning. This objective is met either by the intensive study of selected masterpieces or by producing original works of art, drama, or music. NOTE: No substitutes may be made for the courses that follow unless students have received a score of 4 or 5 on the AP art history examination. These students may satisfy this requirement with an upper-level art history course.

Art History 10100. Introduction to Art

Art History 15000-15100-15200. Art of the West

Art History 15500. Art of the Greek City-States

Art History 16100 through 16500. Art of Asia

Art History 17000 through 18900. Art in Context

English 13600. Playwriting

English 16700. Shakespeare in Performance

English 16800. Advanced Shakespeare: Scene Study

General Studies in Humanities 10100. Drama: Embodiment and


General Studies in Humanities 10300-10400. Drama: Text and Performance

Music 10100. Introduction to Western Music

Music 10200. Introduction to World Music

Music 10300. Introduction to Music: Materials and Design

Music 10400. Introduction to Music Analysis and Criticism

Visual Arts 10100-10200. Visual Language

C. Civilization Studies. Each of the following sequences provides an in-depth examination of the development and accomplishments of one of the world's great civilizations through direct encounters with some of its most significant documents and monuments. Students who have completed (or plan to complete) three quarters of a humanities sequence and one quarter of the dramatic, musical, or visual arts and therefore need only two quarters of civilization studies, may take any of the three quarter sequences either in autumn/winter or in winter/spring. Students should plan to complete this requirement by the end of their second year in the College, unless they are planning to participate in one of the study abroad programs that feature civilization studies. NOTE: Not all of the sequences that follow are offered every year; consult departmental course listings.

Classical Civilization 20700-20800. The Ancient Mediterranean World

Early Christian Literature 20100-20200-20300. Religion in Western Civilization

History 13100-13200-13300. History of Western Civilization

History 13500-13600-13700. America in Western Civilization

History 17300-17400-17500. Science, Culture, and Society in Western


Humanities 20000-20100-20200. Judaic Civilization

Music 12100-12200. Music in Western Civilization

Near Eastern Civilizations 20100-20200-20300. History of the Ancient Near East

Near Eastern History 21100-21200-21300. Near Eastern Civilization

Social Sciences 22000-22100. Introduction to Islamic Civilization

Social Sciences 22500-22600-22700. Introduction to African Civilization

Social Sciences 23000-23100. Introduction to the Civilization of

South Asia

Social Sciences 23500-23600-23700. Introduction to the Civilizations of

East Asia

Social Sciences 24000-24100-24200. Introduction to Russian Civilization

Social Sciences 26100-26200-26300. Introduction to Latin American


Students may also complete their civilization studies requirement by participating in one of the College's study abroad programs listed below. For more information about these programs, consult the Study Abroad Programs section of this catalog or the following Web site:

Social Sciences 20800-20900-21000. Rome: Antiquity to Baroque

(Rome, Italy; Autumn)

Social Sciences 21300-21400-21500. Western Mediterranean Civilization (Barcelona, Spain; Winter)

Social Sciences 24300-24400-24500. Buenos Aires in Latin American

Civilization (Buenos Aires, Argentina; Winter)

Social Sciences 24600-24700-24800. Vienna in Western Civilization

(Vienna, Austria; Autumn)

Social Sciences 26600-26700-26800. African Civilization in Africa

(Capetown, South Africa; Winter)

Social Sciences 27500-27600-27700. French Civilization

(Paris, France; Spring)

Social Sciences 27800-27900-28000. Greek Antiquity and Its Legacy

(Athens, Greece; Spring)

Natural and Mathematical Sciences (6 quarters)

Courses and sequences in the natural sciences are designed to explore significant features of the natural universe and to examine the exciting process of scientific inquiry. These courses consider the powers and limitations of diverse forms of scientific observation, scientific reasoning, and natural laws. Mathematical sciences courses develop powers of formal reasoning through use of precise artificial languages.

Students take six quarter courses in the following areas: at least two quarters of physical sciences (see section A and C); at least two in the biological sciences (see section B and C); and at least one in the mathematical sciences (see section D).

Students may fulfill the natural sciences requirement with a two- or three-quarter sequence in the physical sciences and a two- or three-quarter sequence in the biological sciences, or with an integrated four- or six-quarter sequence in the natural sciences. Students fulfill the mathematical sciences requirement with one or two quarters of computer science, mathematics, or statistics. Students should choose from among the following options based on their concentration and/or preparation for the health professions.

A. Physical Sciences

1. Physical and biological sciences concentrators and students preparing for the health professions must complete one of the following sequences. The third quarter of these yearlong sequences is applied to a student's concentration or electives.

Chemistry 11100-11200 (11300). General Chemistry

Chemistry 12100-12200 (12300). General Chemistry (Honors)

Physics 12100-12200 (12300). General Physics (Variant A)

Physics 13100-13200 (13300). General Physics (Variant B)

Physics 14100-14200 (14300). General Physics (Honors Variant)

2. These sequences are designed for students who do not plan to concentrate in the physical or biological sciences. Enrollment in sequences with an asterisk (*) is limited to first- and second-year students and first-year transfer students.

Physical Sciences 10900-11000. Science and the Earth*

Physical Sciences 10900-13400. Past and Future Climate of Earth*

Physical Sciences 11100-11200. Foundations of Modern Physics

Physical Sciences 11900-12000 (12700). Introduction to Astrophysics

Physical Sciences 13400-13500. The Science of Global Environmental Change

B. Biological Sciences

1. Biological sciences concentrators and students preparing for the health professions must complete one of the following Fundamental Sequences. For biological sciences concentrators, the final three quarters of a sequence are applied to the concentration. Nonconcentrators who are preparing for the health professions register for the third quarter of a sequence as an elective.

Biological Sciences 20181-20182 (20183-20184-20185). Cell and Molecular Biology/Genetics

Biological Sciences 20191-20192 (20193-20194-20195). Cell and Molecular Biology/Genetics

2. First- and second-year students who do not plan to concentrate in the biological sciences or prepare for the health professions register for Biological Sciences 10100 (Core Biology) followed by a "topics" course selected from biological sciences courses numbered 10101 to 15199.

C. Natural Sciences

The natural sciences sequences provide a way for students in the humanities and social sciences to satisfy the general education requirements in both the physical sciences and biological sciences. (These requirements can be fulfilled separately, of course.) If the sequence NTSC 10100-10200-10300-10400 is chosen, then two appropriate courses in the mathematical sciences must be taken. A second (six quarter) sequence, NTSC 12100-12200-12300-12400-12500-12600, is devoted to Environmental Sciences. It satisfies all the general education requirements in the physical, biological, and mathematical sciences. Both sequences are at similar levels.

The natural sciences sequences are open only to first- and second-year students and to first-year transfer students, with preference given to first-year students. The courses must be taken in sequence.

Natural Sciences 10100-10200-10300-10400. Evolution of the Natural World

Natural Sciences 12100-12200-12300-12400-12500-12600. Environmental Sciences (this sequence includes the mathematical sciences requirement)

D. Mathematical Sciences

The courses listed below are designed to develop the powers of formal reasoning through use of precise artificial languages as found in mathematics, computer science, statistics, or formal logic. These courses present broadly applicable techniques for formulating, analyzing, and solving problems, and for evaluating proposed solutions.

Only courses beyond the level of precalculus may be used to fulfill the mathematical sciences requirement. In other words, students must first register for Mathematics 10500-10600, or place into Mathematics 13100, 15100, 16100, or 11200, before taking any of the courses listed below. NOTE: Both precalculus courses together will be counted as only one elective credit.

Students who anticipate concentration programs in the physical or biological sciences, economics, psychology, or public policy studies must satisfy this requirement with the first two quarters of a calculus sequence. Other restrictions may apply, so students should consult their College adviser or departmental counselor about course choices.

Computer Science 10200. Introduction to Programming for the World Wide Web

Computer Science 10500-10600. Fundamentals of Computer Programming

Computer Science 11000-11100. Multimedia Web Programming as an

Interdisciplinary Art

Computer Science 11500-11600-11700. Introduction to Computer Programming

Computer Science 12500-12600. Honors Introduction to Computer Programming

Mathematics 11200. Studies in Mathematics

Mathematics 13100-13200. Elementary Functions and Calculus

Mathematics 15100-15200. Calculus

Mathematics 16100-16200. Honors Calculus

Statistics 12500. Quantitative Methods in Environmental Science

Statistics 20000. Elementary Statistics

NOTE: Mathematics 13100, 15100, and 16100 may be used to satisfy the mathematical sciences requirement only if Mathematics 13200, 15200, or 16200 are also taken.

Social Sciences (3 quarters)

The following sequences are designed to cultivate an understanding of fundamental concepts, theories, and philosophies in the social sciences and to demonstrate how the social sciences formulate basic questions and inquire about the nature of social life through acts of imagination as well as through systematic analysis.

The general education courses are divided into several sequences with individual sections: Social Sciences 11100-11200-11300, 12100-12200-12300, 13100-13200-13300, 14100-14200-14300, and 15100-15200-15300. All sequences are designed to present some of the main ideas, theories, and inquiries of the social sciences, and to show how they can enhance our understanding of central issues facing the world. Classical social-scientific texts and methodologies are given close attention in discussion and lecture settings.

Social Sciences 11100-11200-11300 concentrates on various aspects of power, from the roles of markets and states to the social structures that determine individual, class, and gender inequalities. Social Sciences 13100-13200-13300 examines the public role of empirical social science, using a combination of classic texts, quantitative data, and computer resources. These themes are developed through a detailed examination of a major empirical study and applied to a specific policy domain, such as education or urban policy. Social Sciences 14100-14200-14300 draws from psychology, anthropology, and philosophy to consider how the human mind functions, focusing on rationality, learning, and language. Social Sciences 15100-15200-15300 reads classical texts to investigate criteria for understanding and judging political, social, and economic institutions.

Social Sciences 11100-11200-11300. Power, Identity, and Resistance

Social Sciences 12100-12200-12300. Self, Culture, and Society

Social Sciences 13100-13200-13300. Democracy and Social Science

Social Sciences 14100-14200-14300. Mind

Social Sciences 15100-15200-15300. Classics of Social and Political Thought

Concentration Programs (9 to 19 quarter courses)

The following concentration programs provide an opportunity to focus on a particular area of inquiry. These programs vary from nine to nineteen courses. The number of concentration courses determines the number of electives; together they total twenty-seven courses. Programs that specify thirteen courses require fourteen electives; programs that specify twelve courses require fifteen electives, and so on. More than half of the concentration courses must be taken in residence on the University of Chicago campus:

In the Biological Sciences Collegiate Division:

Biological Sciences

Biological Sciences

Biological Sciences with Specialization in Cellular and Molecular Biology

Biological Sciences with Specialization in Ecology and Evolution

Biological Sciences with Specialization in Neuroscience

In the Humanities Collegiate Division:

Ancient Studies Philosophy

Art History Philosophy

Cinema and Media Studies Philosophy and Allied Fields

Classical Studies Religion and the Humanities

Comparative Literature Romance Languages and

Early Christian Literature Literatures

East Asian Languages and Slavic Languages and

Civilizations Literatures

English Language and Literature Russian Language

Gender Studies and Literature

General Studies in the Humanities West Slavic Languages

Germanic Studies and Literatures

Jewish Studies South Asian Languages

Linguistics and Civilizations

Medieval Studies Visual Arts


Near Eastern Languages and


In the New Collegiate Division:

Environmental Studies

Fundamentals: Issues and Texts

Law, Letters, and Society

Religious Studies

Tutorial Studies

In the Physical Sciences Collegiate Division:

Biological Chemistry Mathematics with

Chemistry Specialization in

Computer Science Economics

Geophysical Sciences Physics

Mathematics Physics

Applied Mathematics Physics with

Mathematics Specialization in

Mathematics with Astrophysics

Specialization in Statistics

Computer Science

In the Social Sciences Collegiate Division:

African and African-American International Studies

Studies Latin American Studies

Anthropology Political Science

Economics Psychology

Geography Public Policy Studies

History Russian Civilization

History, Philosophy, and Social Sociology

Studies of Science and Medicine South Asian Studies

Electives (8 to 18 quarter courses)

Elective courses may be taken in any subject matter or discipline, including those falling within the student's concentration program. A minimum of eight elective courses are generally required.

When Mathematics 10500-10600 are required, both precalculus courses together will be counted as only one elective. Language credit, whether it is earned by course registration or examination, is usually counted toward electives, unless a concentration requires or permits language courses or credit as part of the concentration.

Up to six credits earned by examination (Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate Programme tests taken in high school, and Placement Tests taken during Orientation) may be used as electives. For more information, consult the section on Course Credit and Credit by Examination elsewhere in this catalog.

Other College Requirements

Language Competence

Students are required to demonstrate competency equivalent to one year of college-level study in a language other than English before graduation. The requirement is to demonstrate an all-skills competence: reading, writing, listening, and (where appropriate) speaking. This standard recognizes that levels of skill and ability achievable in the equivalent of one year of study will vary from language to language. Competency examinations are administered several times each academic year; students may also demonstrate competency with AP scores of 3 or above. Courses and examinations are offered in more than thirty languages.

Akkadian Hebrew (modern, Biblical, Polish

American Sign Language or post-Biblical) Portuguese

Arabic Hindi Russian

Assyrian Hittite Sanskrit

Babylonian Italian Spanish

Bangla (Bengali) Japanese Swahili

Chinese (literary or modern) Korean Tamil

Czech Latin Tibetan

Ancient Egyptian Macedonian Turkish

French Norwegian Urdu

German Pali Yiddish

Greek (classical) Persian

After satisfying the College language competency requirement, students are urged to work toward a Second Language Proficiency Certificate. Such certificates require a minimum of two years of language study, a quarter abroad in an intensive language program approved by the University of Chicago, and at least one additional advanced course.

Physical Education (3 quarters)

The physical education program is designed to cultivate physical fitness, basic athletic skills, and an appreciation of the value of recreational physical activity. Courses available to fulfill this requirement include

Archery Movement Improvisation

Ballet (elementary, intermediate) Personal Fitness (conditioning,

Community First Aid and Safety free weights, jogging,

(American Red Cross–ARC) step aerobics, walking,

CPR for the Professional Rescuer water aerobics,

(ARC) weight training)

Emergency Response (ARC) Racquetball

First Aid–Responding to Social Dance (elementary,

Emergencies (ARC) intermediate)

Golf Swimming (novice, elementary)

Jazz Dance Tennis (elementary,

Lifeguard Training (ARC) intermediate, advanced)

Modern Dance (elementary,


Students normally take three quarters of physical education in their first year. A physical fitness classification test and swimming test will be given during Orientation. Depending on their physical fitness classification test scores, students may place out of one, two, or three quarters of physical education. Students who do not pass the swimming test must take one quarter of swimming. Although physical education is required for graduation, it is not included among the forty-two academic courses counted toward a degree.

Academic Advising

Office of the Dean of Students in the College. Every student is assigned to an academic adviser on the staff of the dean of students in the College. The professional staff offers support to students as they address the range of decisions they will make throughout the college years. Working with an adviser, each student discovers how to pursue his or her own interests in relation to the curricular requirements of the College.

The College adviser's primary responsibility is to help students plan an appropriate program of study leading to a degree in the selected area of concentration. Advisers are familiar with College academic procedures and University rules and regulations. Students with questions about the concentration programs and the various special options and degree programs described in this catalog are urged to consult their College advisers.

In addition, advisers help students learn about and select among the many educational programs and opportunities available in the University community and assist students in planning for graduate work and careers. Some advisers have special responsibility for a particular area of expertise such as study abroad, fellowships and scholarships, and careers in the health professions, law, or business. Advisers are also a good first source of help with problems, personal and otherwise, that may arise from time to time.

A complete list of the staff of the dean of students in the College is available on the following Web site: This list includes all College advisers.

The Collegiate Divisions. The master of each Collegiate Division (Biological Sciences, Humanities, Physical Sciences, Social Sciences, and the New Collegiate Division) administers curricular and faculty matters for the Division and oversees the offerings that meet the general education requirements. The senior adviser of each Collegiate Division, with the aid of appropriate faculty committees, provides direction for College advisers and students when questions arise in planning student programs, interpreting requirements, and evaluating work done elsewhere.

A complete list of the masters, their administrative assistants, and the senior advisers for each Collegiate Division is available on the following Web site:

The Concentrations. Questions specific to the areas of concentration are usually directed to the faculty counselors attached to the various programs. After students have decided on a field of concentration, they should consult the appropriate counselor as soon as possible about the completion of concentration requirements. Information on how to reach faculty counselors is available on the following Web site: