Daemen College recognizes that education must prepare students for professional, intellectual, and civic leadership. Key to fostering the student’s development in these areas is the Core Curriculum – a common educational experience for all students, regardless of major. The Daemen College core is designed to strengthen students’ intellectual curiosity, professionalism, sense of civic responsibility, and ability to deal with change.
The core experience consists of seven essential competencies. These competencies are introduced at the freshman level and are emphasized across the entire curriculum so that students develop a greater understanding of, appreciation for, and practice in these important life skills through their academic work. As students complete the core they acquire the ability to think, adapt and act in an increasingly complex and rapidly changing multicultural environment.
The core requires successful completion of 45 credits of approved core course work outside the major, of which at least nine credit hours must be taken at the 300-400 level.
The core curriculum entails successful completion of a set of requirements as follows. (These requirements may be satisfied anywhere in the student’s program.)
- Successful completion of 3 credit hours in each of the 7 competencies:
critical thinking and creative problem solving
moral and ethical discernment
- Learning Communities: Normally comprise two courses with a common theme. Students must complete:
Learning Community I (IND101 + linked course)
Learning Community II (two linked courses)
- Quantitative Literacy: 3 credit hours
- Research/Presentation: 3 credit hours
- Service Learning: 3 credit hours (Note that a maximum of 6 credit hours in Service Learning courses are allowed as part of the 45 credits in the core.)
- Writing Intensive:
CMP101 English Composition (or its equivalent) (3 credit hours);
3 credits hours in addition to Research and Presentation, which is also writing intensive
Note: Courses accepted for transfer (other than those equivalent to CMP101 English Composition) will not satisfy core requirements unless approved by the Core Director.
The Seven Competencies
The seven competencies described below comprise the heart of Daemen’s core curriculum. Every course approved for core credit includes at least three competencies, including at least one primary competency. Course syllabi explicitly state the learning objectives that relate to the competencies and the assessment techniques that will be used to determine if the student demonstrates mastery of the competency. The seven competencies are:
I. Critical Thinking and Creative Problem Solving
Critical thinking employs intellectual skills such as observation, classification, analysis, and synthesis in a reasonable and reflective manner to arrive at meaningful decisions. Creative problem solvers think analytically (cognitively and affectively) and integrate various forms of disparate information into a coherent whole. They demonstrate the ability to reason both inductively and deductively, generate alternative choices, consider consequences associated with each choice, and arrive at a reasonable decision in both familiar and unfamiliar contexts.
II. Information Literacy
Information Literacy is defined as the ability to know when there is a need for information, and to be able to identify, locate, evaluate, and effectively use that information for the issue or problem at hand.
III. Communication Skills
Effective communication includes grammatical and technical competency as well as the ability to communicate across cultural boundaries with an awareness of the rhetorical effects of language in a variety of situational contexts (including non-verbal). An ongoing writing curriculum embedded throughout the core will enhance a student’s abilities to organize ideas coherently and strategically, to choose words precisely for different levels of discourse, and to evaluate appropriate tone in a variety of discursive situations.
IV. Affective Awareness
Affective awareness emanates from the relationship between sensory experience and emotional response. A sensory experience can move people to great emotional depths and can provoke powerful sensations. An affective process reveals biases, identifies patterns, creates meaning in response to this perception. By assessing affective awareness, one gains aesthetic sensibility to respond knowingly and probingly to the myriad appeals to affective consciousness that characterize contemporary culture.
V. Moral and Ethical Discernment
Moral and ethical discernment is defined as a non-judgmental understanding of how moral and ethical standards are formed, how they influence aspects of our lives, and how they shape public discourse and policy. Moral and ethical discernment is linked to such concepts as integrity, objectivity, public interest, and justice.
VI. Contextual Competency
Acquiring contextual competency allows individuals to identify and integrate relevant past and present issues affecting individuals, organizations, local societies, and global communities and to understand the constraints and impacts of social, cultural, environmental, political, and other contexts on issues and solutions.
VII. Civic Responsibility
Civic responsibility is grounded in an appreciation that the health of local, national, and global communities is dependent on the direct and active participation of all members in the well being of the community as a whole. Acquiring civic responsibility enables individuals to transform their social interests into personal advocacy and social participation in local and global communities. Civic responsibility entails a life-long commitment to addressing problems these communities face.
Certain courses are thematically linked as learning communities of two courses, enabling students from different majors to view course material through the perspective of different disciplines and to develop friendships with students outside their own specific field of study. Learning Community I comprises IND 101 Critical Relationships – the College’s first-year experience course – paired with a topical course, with offerings in a wide variety of disciplines. Learning Community II consists of two linked thematic courses and is typically taken in the second semester of the freshman year.
Quantitative Literacy at varying levels is needed in preparation for further study in many academic and professional fields, as well as being of value in everyday life. Many adults, especially college graduates, are likely to assume positions in their communities and in professional organizations where quantitative literacy, such as the ability to deal intelligently with statistics, will come into play and may even be essential for effectiveness. The Daemen curriculum requires a minimum of three credit hours in course work designated as fulfilling our quantitative literacy requirement.
Service Learning focuses primarily on relating theory to practice through the incorporation of a Service Learning component into an academic course. Service Learning frames the reciprocity issue that all partners in the learning experience are servers, served, teachers, and learners. Service Learning assumes that colleges are living communities and the location of learning and serving. The Daemen curriculum requires a minimum of three credit hours in Service Learning. In addition to academic requirements such as readings and reflection papers, students complete a minimum of 20 clock hours for each credit hour of service – i.e., 60 service hours total to fulfill the three credit hour requirement.
Research and Presentation
This requirement facilitates the integration of course work, knowledge, skills, and experiential learning, enabling the student to demonstrate a broad mastery of learning within the discipline. Courses meeting the College’s three credit hour Research and Presentation (R&P) requirement include a research paper as well as an oral presentation with peer critique in a public forum. All courses approved for R&P credit must also have a component that meets Writing Intensive standards.
The College emphasizes the critical importance of written communication skills by requiring a minimum of nine credit hours in courses designated as Writing Intensive (WI). Three of these hours are fulfilled in the required CMP 101 English Composition course (3 hours) and additional credits through the Research and Presentation requirement. Additional credit hours are taken in a Writing Intensive course of the student’s choice and/or within the major for a total of 9 credits. A minimum of 25% of the final grade in WI courses is based on writing performance.
Interdisciplinary Courses (IND)
For information on any IND course, please consult with the chairperson of the department sponsoring the IND course, as indicated at the end of IND course descriptions. Consult the Core Director for information on those courses that do not indicate a sponsoring department.
IND 101: Sustainable and Critical Relationships (3)
Introduces freshmen students to the rich complexities of college education. It provides an extended orientation during which students: are introduced to the meaning and value of a liberal arts education; learn to successfully adapt to the academic, personal and social complexities of college life; develop important social relationships with other students and with the broader campus community; learn to access important campus resources that support students' academic achievement as well as their physical and mental health. Along with this orientation, students will begin a journey of intellectual, aesthetic, moral and ethical self-reflection and growth. The primary intent of the course is to facilitate students' abilities to analyze knowledge from disparate sources and to enhance critical thinking skills. Offered Each Year (Fall). (UG)
IND 123: Introduction to Sustainable Communities (3)
Cross-listed as SUST 123. Students will be introduced to economic, environmental and social sustainability, and evaluate local communities on sustainable characteristics. Research will be reviewed on model sustainable communities: locally, nationally and internationally. Students will visit exemplary sites in Buffalo and participate in community meetings and lectures. (Sponsored by the Natural Sciences Department) (UG)
IND 203: Peer Mentoring: Theory (1)
Fulfills one credit for training (IND 203) applicable to core competency: Civic Responsibility; and an additional 2 credits toward Civic Responsibility if/when student spends a semester as a Peer Mentor. May be used toward fulfillment of 3-credit hour Service Learning requirement in the Core. Course prepares students to act as mentors in the Peer Mentor Program in support of Learning Community 1. It can also prepare students to act as mentors in other departments and programs as they develop within the college community. Offered Each Year (Fall). (UG)
IND 205: Peer Mentoring: Practicum (2)
Requires (prerequisite) successful completion of IND-203. Applicable to core competency: Civic Responsibility: 2 credits toward Civic Responsibility if/when student successfully completes a semester as a Peer Mentor. May be used toward fulfillment of 3-credit hour Service Learning requirement in the Core. Course prepares students to act as mentors in the Peer Mentor Program in support of Learning Community 1. It can also prepare students to act as mentors in other departments and programs as they develop within the college community. Offered Each Year (Fall). (UG)
IND 209: Campus Environmental Service Learning (1 - 3)
Fulfills core competency: Civic Responsibility. Service Learning. Students engage in a semester-long campus project that addresses sustainability of the campus environment. Students conduct a needs assessment, decide on a project (or continue on a previously developed project), create an action plan and actively participate in implementing the plan. Projects will vary depending on student interest and faculty expertise. Possible projects could include a campus energy audit, recycling plan, and campus beautification. (Sponsored by the Natural Sciences Department) (UG)
IND 210: Romantic Impulse (3)
Fulfills core competency: Contextual Competency. Focus upon man's search for an all-encompassing theory of the universe and how circumstances and events influenced that search and modified the theory within a discrete time period. Beginning in the Romanesque period of the middle ages and culminating in the 19th century Romantic movement, the course will examine music, painting, sculpture, poetry, politics, philosophy, technology and science and how each of these adapted to the others as the world and the world-view underwent changes. The term romantic impulse refers to the fact that so many of the necessary changes that occurred, did so in accordance with someone's dissatisfaction with the status quo and the feeling that improvements were possible. Offered As Needed. (Sponsored by the English Department.) (UG)
IND 212: Latino and Latin American Culture (3)
Fulfills core competency: Moral and Ethical Discernment. This course examines the historical, literary, religious and artistic elements that form the cultures of Spanish-speaking people in the US, the Caribbean, Mexico, Central and South America. It is designed to inform students about L/LA cultures and to enable them to appreciate the richness of those cultures and to discern the different ways people of those cultures view themselves and the ways people in the U.S. view them. From understanding and appreciation will come an awareness of the many factors that create a moral and ethical framework that may be different from one's own, yet still be moral and ethical. The course will use historical and contemporary readings as well as literature and film, and to a lesser extent, fine art, to provide a framework for the value systems of Latinos & Latin Americans. (Sponsored by the Modern Languages Department.) Offered As Needed. (UG)
IND 213: Service Learning Through VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance) Program (3)
Fulfills core competency: Civic Responsibility. Fulfills Service Learning requirement. This course certifies students to participate in the VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance) Program. Students learn how to prepare basic tax returns. Students will be able to e-file these tax returns using TaxWise Software. The students will work at several VITA sites preparing tax returns for low-income taxpayers in the local community. The students will also identify social and political issues impacted by state and federal taxes. (Sponsored by the Accounting/MIS Department.) Prerequisite: ACC 318. Offered Each Spring. (UG)
IND 214: Environmental Education in the Community (3)
Fulfills core competency: Civic Responsibility. Service Learning. Given input from targeted community members, students will develop, facilitate, and participate in a local environmental action project within a community educational setting (e.g., school, nature center, museum, community center). Through this experience, students will develop an awareness of the value of intergenerational community health and working towards common goals as well as an understanding of life-long civic responsibility. Examples of possible projects include school yard habitat projects (rain gardens, tree planting), butterfly gardens, vegetable gardens, energy audits and energy saving programs. Can be substituted for PHI-232 for Education majors with permission of Department Chair. (Sponsored by the Education Department). (UG)
IND 219: 20th Century Film, Society and Ideology (3)
Fulfills core competency: Contextual Competency. This course will examine a number of varied films from the 1930's to the end of the century in terms of text and technique. It will also examine film and the film industry as an institution of cultural validation within and challenges to modern society. It will also highlight how various films and their creators either support or confront society's dominant political and social ideologies, in terms of genre, genre criticism, and auteur theory. Offered As Needed. (Sponsored by the English Department.) (UG)
IND 232: Service Learning to Promote Sustainable Communities (3)
Fulfills core competency: Civic Responsibility. Fulfills Service Learning requirement. This course challenges students to explore the concepts of citizenship, civic engagement, and sustainability as well as their own roles in society. Students engage in semester long off-campus projects that address community needs. Students conduct a needs assessment, decide on a project or continue on a previously developed project, and actively participate in implementing the plan. Possible projects may include literacy projects such as tutoring children in after-school programs, cross-cultural education projects with global refugees, computer literacy projects for children, and diversity programs. Offered As Needed. (Sponsored by the Center for Sustainable Communities and Civic Engagement). (UG)
IND 233: SL-History and Politics of Poverty and Homelessness (3)
Fulfills core competency: Civic Responsibility. Fulfills Service Learning requirement. This course will examine the public issues of poverty and homelessness in America, as well as globally. It will combine academic study with Service Learning experience in the local community, as a point of departure for students' awareness and intervention strategies to combat the impacts of poverty and homeless as a public issue. Students will devote four hours per week to community service. In addition, students will conduct a community needs assessment, decide on a project, and actively participate in implementing the plan. Offered As Needed.(Sponsored by the History and Government Department.) (UG)
IND 241: The Law in the Media (3)
Fulfills core competency: Affective Awareness. This course will explore how the media has depicted the role of the law and lawyers in American Society. The course will unearth why we have both a fascination and sometimes a disdain for lawyers and what this means in the larger context in terms of respect for the belief in our judicial system and the fairness of laws. The class will tackle such issues as: what is the truth behind the statement "money can buy justice," what is the truth behind "innocent until proven guilty" and is justice truly "blind." The course will be organized by themes so that the students can trace the actual and media portrayal of those themes. Offered as needed. (Sponsored by the Business Administration Department.) (UG)
IND 248: International Service Learning (1 - 3)
Fulfills core competency: Civic Responsibility. May also be taken as IND 348 or 448, as determined by student's standing. Students will perform service in another country in a variety of settings, such as schools, community organizations, and social service agencies etc. Projects will vary depending on student interest. Consultation with the International Studies Program advisor is required. This course may be taken up to three times for credit.(Sponsored by the Modern Languages Department.) Offered As Needed. (UG)
IND 249: Performance Enhancement (3)
Fulfills core competency: Civic Responsibility. Students will learn the latest in sport performance techniques, including the dynamic warm-up that develops pillar strength, posture, and flexibility. They will also engage in resistance training and read about current and controversial topics in the field of nutrition. This course requires moderate to strenuous physical exercise. Offered as needed. (Sponsored by the Business Administration Department - Sport Management specialization.) (UG)
IND 250: Introduction to Historic Preservation (3)
Cross listed as HG-250. Fulfills core competency: Contextual Competency. Introduction to Historic Preservation will provide a comprehensive introduction to historic preservation history, principles and practices. The course will begin with a review of the evolution of historic preservation doctrine and philosophy. We next will discuss the legal background for historic preservation, with an emphasis on the judicial and statutory underpinnings that support, and limit, current preservation efforts. Next, we will consider why certain buildings and locations are considered "historic" and we will discuss the designation and documentation process that protects those assets and the federal "treatments" (i.e., standards) that guide their preservation, restoration, reconstruction and rehabilitation. We then will discuss historic preservation as an economic development tool. The course will close with consideration of economic incentives that are available for historic rehabilitation activities. (Sponsored by the History and Government Department). (UG)
IND 269: Hollywood's America (3)
Fulfills core competency: Affective Awareness. This course explores the way that the divisive social issues of the recent past have been represented in film. The course will revolve around five sets of topics (Vietnam, the Cold War, civil rights, feminism, and the culture wars). The course will explore both technical and aesthetic aspects of the various films and the way that the film reflects and comments upon social reality. (Sponsored by the Philosophy and Religious Studies Department.) (UG)
IND 315: Perspectives on Blacks & Education (3)
Fulfills core competency: Moral and Ethical Discernment. This course will be organized around historical time periods and it will illustrate how education was shaped for blacks in the diaspora. The course will also focus on contemporary issues in education, including the social, political and economic implications of schooling for blacks in America. Offered As Needed. (Sponsored by the Education Department). (UG)
IND 322: Alternative and Renewable Energy Issues (3)
Fulfills core competencies: Contextual Competency; Critical Thinking & Creative Problem Solving. Cross listed as SUST 322. This course will introduce students to the history of energy use, different energy technologies available and under development, as well as discuss the role of governmental policies and funding in promoting new technologies. (Sponsored by the BA Global and Local Sustainability program). Prerequisites: MTH124. Offered as Needed. (UG)
IND 325: Introduction to Polish Culture (3)
Fulfills core competency: Contextual Competency; Writing Intensive. Cross-listed as HIS-325. Students are introduced to the history of Polish culture. This survey course will focus primarily on cultural developments, but students will also learn about key political, economic, and social developments in Polish history. Offered Alternate Years (Spring). (Sponsored by the History and Government Department.) (UG)
IND 326: Green Buildings (3)
Fulfills core competencies: Contextual Competency; Critical Thinking and Problem Solving. Cross listed as SUST 326. This course is designed to introduce students to the concepts of green building design through the use of Daemen's buildings as experimental laboratories. The US Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification system will be used as a guide to investigate and discuss construction site selection and protection, building energy-efficient features, water conservation strategies, indoor environmental quality and materials and resources used in buildings. (Sponsored by the BA Global and Local Sustainability program). Prerequisites: MTH124. Offered as Needed. (UG)
IND 328: The Image of Women in Art and Media (3)
Fulfills core competency: Affective Awareness. Cross-listed as WST 328. This course addresses the ways in which women have been represented visually (painting, sculpture, film, advertising). The examination will examine both historical prototypes and contemporary examples. Among the issues we will discuss in an open forum are: The depiction of women from both a masculine and feminine vantage point, how the feminist agenda has been perceived in contemporary culture to condone sexualization and objectification, and how the image conveys assumptions and knowledge. (Sponsored by the Visual and Performing Arts Department.) (UG)
IND 334: Non-Western Art & Culture (3)
Fulfills core competency: Contextual Competency. This course is a survey of art, literature, and religion from Africa, India, Japan and China. It will examine the products of these individual cultures, and discuss how they relate to contemporary historical events and philosophical or religious trends. Although the focus will primarily be on art objects, significant discussions will take place on related historical or religious themes, and other examples of this expression (i.e. literature, music, etc.) Among the issues discussed in the course are: the colonization of non-western cultures, the implications of the word "primitive," and the diverging belief systems of Islam, Buddhism, and Hinduism. (Sponsored by the Visual and Performing Arts Department.) (UG)
IND 338: Food and Agriculture Issues (3)
Fulfills core competency: Contextual Competency. Cross listed as SUST 338. The course integrates the science associated with food production with the social and economic issues influencing food production, distribution, safety and policy. (Sponsored by the BA Global and Local Sustainability program). Prerequisites: IND/SUST123 or ENS201, or permission of instructor. Offered as Needed. (UG)
IND 340: Community Mural Painting (3)
Fulfills core competency: Civic Responsibility. Service Learning. This course will challenge students to explore the art of painting and its ability to actively engage and contribute to diverse communities. Students will engage in a semester long service learning project whose final goal will be a completed public mural. The course will be simultaneously an introduction to basic painting techniques and brainstorming dialogue and instruction with community members with whom the class will collaboratively create a mural. The course will involve class painting exercises, in-class discussions, 60 hours of service, and written and photographic journaling. (Sponsored by the Visual and Performing Arts Department) (UG)
IND 344: Sustainable Business Practices (3)
Fulfills core competency: Contextual Competency; Moral and Ethical Discernment. Cross listed as SUST 344. This course will introduce the concepts of sustainable business practices and corporate social responsibility. Sustainable Business is a new paradigm shift from today's status quo management style of maximizing profit at any cost. Traditional economic indicators have relied on gross domestic production and purchasing; however, these measures do not incorporate the costs to the environment and society. Newer indicators try to include these externalities to more accurately represent the economic health of a society. Sustainable business aims to restore and maintain environmental quality and develop social equity, while pursuing long term profitability. (Sponsored by the BA Global and Local Sustainability program). Prerequisites: Sophomore status or permission of instructor. Offered as Needed. (UG)
IND 345: Introduction to Russian Culture (3)
Fulfills core competency: Contextual Competency; Writing Intensive. Cross-listed as HIS 345. This course introduces students to select themes in the Russian cultural tradition. The peoples of Russia have engaged actively with other cultures in Europe and Asia for over a millennium. We will explore how a distinct Russian culture has emerged, with special emphases on the following developments: the introduction of Christianity; the "Mongol Yoke;" the "Europeanization" of Muscovite Russia; the cultural splendor of the Russian empire during the reign of Catherine II; the flourishing of Russian literary culture under an absolutist regime during the "Golden Age" of the mid-19th century; and Russia's role in the birth of Modernism at the end of the tsarist era. (Sponsored by the History and Government Department). Offered Alternate Years (Spring). (UG)
IND 348: International Service Learning (1 - 3)
Fulfills core competency: Civic Responsibility. May also be taken as IND 248 or 448, as determined by student's standing. Students will perform service in another country in a variety of settings, such as schools, community organizations, and social service agencies etc. Projects will vary depending on student interest. Consultation with the International Studies Program advisor is required. This course may be taken up to three times for credit.(Sponsored by the Modern Languages Department). Offered As Needed. (UG)
IND 351: Urban Planning and Community Development (3)
Fulfills core competencies: Contextual Competency; Civic Responsibility. Cross listed as SUST 351. This course will introduce the theories of urban design, history of urban development, decline and rebirth, and the roles that all stakeholders play in developing sustainable communities. (Sponsored by the BA Global and Local Sustainability program). Prerequisites: Sophomore status. Offered as Needed. (UG)
IND 398: International Experiential Learning (3)
Fulfills core competency: Contextual Competency. This course provides students and faculty an opportunity for short-term (less than one semester) experiential learning in a foreign country. The focus of the course may be fully interdisciplinary or specifically focused on one aspect of the other nation. Faculty wishing to offer International Experiential Learning under a departmental rubric will submit their course outline, texts and assignments to the credit-granting department. Faculty wanting an IND rubric must submit the course outline, texts and assignments to the Core and Interdisciplinary Studies Committee. Offered as Needed, including Intersemester and Summer. (UG)
IND 412: Social Entrepreneurship (3)
Fulfills core competencies: Critical Thinking & Creative Problem Solving; Information Literacy; fulfills Research and Presentation requirement; Writing Intensive. This course introduces the student to the field of social entrepreneurship which focuses on creating long-term, sustainable change and impact through mission driven profit and non-profit ventures. The course will familiarize students with major social entrepreneurs and the challenges that they faced in growing their ventures from an idea to a fully mature organization or company. In addition, the course will encourage students to consider ventures within the context of social problems in areas such as education, community development, economic stability, health and other current issues. Prerequisites: Senior status and permission of academic advisor. Offered As Needed. (Sponsored by the Business Administration Department). (UG)
IND 448: International Service Learning (1 - 3)
Fulfills core competency: Civic Responsibility. May also be taken as IND 248 or 348, as determined by student's standing. Students will perform service in another country in a variety of settings, such as schools, community organizations, and social service agencies etc. Projects will vary depending on student interest. Consultation with the International Studies Program advisor is required. This course may be taken up to three times for credit.(Sponsored by the Modern Languages Department.) Offered As Needed. (UG)
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