Core Curriculum

As a Catholic university, St. Thomas seeks to foster in its students a deeper understanding of the totality of life and its purposes and to instill in its graduates an appreciation for the life of the mind and the joy of learning. To encourage this development, St. Thomas requires that all of its undergraduates, regardless of their major, complete coursework in nine curricular areas.

The English Department offers courses that fulfill the Literature and Writing core requirement as well as select courses that fulfill the Human Diversity core area requirement.

Literature and Writing Core Requirement

At the University of St. Thomas, students take ENGL 121: Critical Thinking: Literature & Writing and one of the ENGL 201-204: Texts in Conversation courses.

This sequence of courses develops students’ critical awareness of language by helping them to recognize the relationship between their own experience and the interpretive possibilities of literature. Attention is paid to the integration of the individual’s composing process and the process of reading and understanding texts. These courses foster attentive reading, careful thinking, and effective writing.

2016-2018 Undergraduate Catalog

Students enroll in two courses:

  • ENGL 121 Critical Thinking: Literature and Writing (4 credits)

Second Course (one of the following)

  • ENGL 201 Texts in Conversation: Perspectives on Genre and Craft (4 credits)
  • ENGL 202 Texts in Conversation: Interdisciplinary Perspectives (4 credits)
  • ENGL 203 Texts in Conversation: Thematic and Intertextual Perspectives (4 credits)
  • ENGL 204 Texts in Conversation: Perspectives on Language, Culture, and Literacy (4 credits)

Students with qualifying ACT scores may enroll in:  

  • One of ENGL 201 through 204 (4 credits) 


  • one of the following literature courses: ENGL 211, 212, 214, 215, 217, 218, 220, 221, 222, 297, 324, 325, 334, 337, 341, 361, 362, 364, 365, 366, 367, 370, 371, 372, 373, 390, and 395, or two 2-credit ENGL 295 courses during J-Term

Writing Across the Curriculum (WAC) Requirements

At UST we are committed to creating a culture of writing. All students who begin their work at UST as of Fall 2015 will have as part of their degree program a Writing Across the Curriculum requirement of two (2) Writing Intensive classes, one (1) Writing to Learn class, and one (1) Writing in the Disciplines class.

Students can identify Writing Across the Curriculum courses by the following notations on section numbers:

  • Writing Intensive sections will begin with a 'W'
  • Writing to Learn sections will begin with an 'L'
  • Writing in the Disciplines sections will begin with a 'D'
All sections of ENGL 201-204 will be Writing Intensive.

Many 200- and 300-level English courses will be Writing to Learn courses; check the section number when you register.

ENGL 405, 481, and 482 are Writing in the Disciplines courses for English majors.

For more about the Writing Across the Curriculum requirements, please visit the St. Thomas WAC website.

Human Diversity Core Area Requirement  

Courses fulfilling the 4-credit Human Diversity core area requirement focus on one or more areas of inquiry: racial and ethnic minorities; class; gender; marginalized groups; and non-Western literature. A variety of departments offer courses that fulfill this requirement. The English Department offers the following courses that fulfill this requirement:

ENGL 217 Multicultural Literature
ENGL 218 Literature by Women: Critical History
ENGL 337 The Literature of Human Diversity
ENGL 341 Literature by Women: Critical Questions
ENGL 395 Issues in Literature and Culture (select sections only)