Champlain College’s Unusual Core

Champlain College has a unique approach to earning a college degree. Instead of the typical fashion of enforcing general education requirements only for the first year or two of a student’s study before getting into degree-specific classes, this college integrates liberal arts classes within its pre-professional curriculum throughout all four years.

According to Colleen Flaherty’s “Plato in Marketing Class,” the college in Vermont uses what they call the vertical Core, which trains students for the professional world while providing them with an interdisciplinary general education program. When students enroll in their courses, they must take a gen. ed. course each semester. The first focuses on the self and community; the next concerns Western tradition; junior year explores global ideas like human rights; and the final one is a capstone course (Flaherty). Throughout their education, students find ways to connect what they learn in the liberal arts to their professionally geared courses, which makes their classroom experience richer and more appealing to potential employers upon graduation.

Find out more by reading the Inside Higher Ed article. Do you like this approach to education? Why or why not? Let us know in the comments!


Flaherty, Colleen. “Plato in Marketing Class.” Inside Higher Ed. Inside Higher Ed, 24 May 2016. Web. 26 May 2016.

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