Our Academic Experience
Simpson College's academic vision puts your future success and citizenship in focus
Today’s employers and graduate schools look beyond the degree. They also want effective communicators, innovators and problem solvers.
Our Engaged Citizenship Curriculum is designed to equip you with the foundational components of a liberal arts education, as well as these intrinsic characteristics that will position you near the top of today's highly competitive job market. This unique curriculum links Simpson's historic mission to the very best in contemporary learning theory. It features three defining characteristics that are woven into each student's curricular requirements and coursework: Areas of Engagement, Embedded Skills and Writing Across the Curriculum.
The integrative approach helps ensure that you develop the intellectual and practical dexterity of an engaged citizen and become a person who emphasizes personal integrity, moral responsibility and social justice. By exploring enduring questions of humanity, civilization and the world and by building the skills necessary to shape and create a diverse and just community, our curriculum will help prepare you to become the greatest version of yourself.
From first day to diploma
As part of the Engaged Citizenship Curriculum, two important academic experiences will bookend your time at Simpson. The Simpson Colloquium will prepare you for life at college, and the Senior Capstone will prepare you for your career. You can also challenge your studies and take your potential even further in our college-wide honors program, SC Honors.
Instructors organize these seminars to meet the particular needs of different cohorts and plan exciting, relevant class themes in a wide area of interests. In your small colloquium, you’ll meet other new students, work with a writing tutor and student mentor, and integrate into our academic culture.
In addition to classes in your major, you’ll take seven Areas of Engagement courses that address issues of citizenship from a variety of perspectives. These courses enhance your education experience, give you an important background from which to make decisions as a well-engaged global citizen and provide a noteworthy depth of knowledge that is attractive to future employers.
Learn through participation in artistic creation. You’ll develop an understanding of art as a constructed means for communication, designed to reveal certain meanings and ideas or to elicit specific responses. This is your opportunity to develop your imagination and ability to express yourself.
Learn about civil liberties, civil rights, voting, civic conversation, and other values, duties, skills and responsibilities that positively shape our communities. You’ll grow to understand the significance of civic engagement, how to act on your values and how to accept responsibility for them as they affect self, others and society.
Diversity and power in the U.S.
Develop the knowledge, dispositions and skills necessary to shape and create diverse and just communities in the U.S., while studying the perspectives of groups that have been systematically denied the power to shape social institutions. You’ll investigate both the conflicts arising from these power differentials and the cultural contributions of those who are isolated by social inequities. These courses encourage you to understand and empathize with the perspectives and experiences of another group.
Ethics and value inquiry
Learn how to think critically about the sources and meanings of your commitments to personal integrity, moral responsibility and social justice. You’ll gain an understanding of ethics and value systems and explore fundamental questions about moral values and actions and how they relate to our responsibilities to ourselves and others.
Explore societies outside the U.S. through the lens of a specific problem (e.g., global warming, genocide, human rights) or a larger trend (e.g., art, religion, politics, history, economics, literature). You’ll become acquainted with the diversity of thoughts, beliefs and values of societies external to your own and gain a greater appreciation of and sensitivity to global diversity.
Historical perspectives in Western culture
Study the development of Western culture and its past in order to understand, appreciate or critique it. You’ll learn how Western culture emerged over time through a range of intellectual, philosophical, religious and historical currents; this culture now determines our assumptions, defines our options and governs how we judge and perceive the modern world. Such awareness provides context for the current structures of Western society and assists you in making informed decisions as engaged citizens.
Learn to solve problems through the analysis of quantitative empirical data. You’ll work within the scientific method, including hypothesis formation and testing, systematic observation and analysis of quantitative data. These methods will help you understand how technology and science affect daily life in areas such as the environment, medicine, human behavior and scientific ethics.
Ready to get started?
Simpson's academic programs are relevant and rigorous, consistent with our goal of preparing you for future success. Find the area of study that interests you the most.
Beyond the classroom
The value of what you will learn in the classroom can only be equaled by the opportunities you have outside of it.
Whether you choose to study abroad, design a research project, participate in Simpson's national championship speech and debate team, flex your entrepreneurial muscle, or one of many more opportunities Simpson offers, you will be changed by the experience.