Undergraduate Courses

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Core Courses

Undergraduate education at the University of Chicago begins with a general education curriculum, known as the Common Core. These courses teach critical analytical and writing skills through the study of original texts and the formulation of original problems. They aim not just to transfer information, but to raise fundamental questions and to encourage essential habits of mind. These small, faculty-taught courses constitute the major component of the first two years in the College.

Current University of Chicago undergraduates who take the core sequences listed below during the summer enable themselves to study abroad or to take more advanced courses in their concentrations or electives during the rest of the academic year.

Visit the College website for more information about general education requirements.

  • Humanities, Civilization Studies, and the Arts
  • Introduction to the Civilizations of East Asia (Japan, Session 1; China, Session 2)
  • History of Western Civilization 1, 2, 3 (Sessions I, II, IV)
  • Introduction to Art History (Session I)
  • Introduction to Music: Analysis and Criticism (Session I)
  • Visual Language: On Images (Session I)
  • Natural and Mathematical Sciences
  • The Infectious Lifestyle: Why Bugs Know So Much about Cell Biology 1, 2 (Sessions I, II)
  • Metabolism and Exercise
  • Metabolism and Nutrition
  • An Introduction to Quantitative/Computational Biology
  • The Biology of Gender
  • Ecology and the Environment
  • Workings of the Human Brain: From Brain to Behavior
  • Introduction to Computer Science 1, 2 (Sessions I, II)
  • Calculus 1, 2 (Sessions I, III)
  • Social Sciences
  • Self, Culture, and Society 1, 2, 3 (Sessions I, II, IV)

Summer Language Institute

Study an entire year's worth of language this summer. Classes run in six- or nine-week sequences, and twelve languages are offered. Students may also focus on reading and translation courses. For complete course information, please visit the Summer Language Institute website.

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