Sep 30, 2023  
University Catalog 2018-2019 
University Catalog 2018-2019 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

College of Arts and Sciences

Administration Building 110 - (504) 520-7652 -

The College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) consists of six Academic Divisions comprised of twenty Academic Departments which together with the College Deans share responsibility for the quality and integrity of the academic programs of the College and fidelity to Xavier’s mission.

The CAS Dean’s Office provides service to faculty and students on matters pertaining to teaching and learning including curricula, academic progress, and degree requirements. The office staff is accountable for implementation of established policies and procedures found in this University Catalog.

Through the CAS Academic and Planning Councils, the Dean’s Office provides oversight of the College Core Curriculum as well as departmental/divisional and interdisciplinary curricula. This includes provision for assessment at all levels within the College as well as monitoring all programmatic and attitudinal university-wide assessment procedures.

An academic faculty member in the student’s major is appointed as an advisor to assist each student in registering for appropriate courses and in determining academic progress. Students who are uncertain about a major or who are not making satisfactory academic progress in their chosen major are temporarily assigned as “Deciding Majors.”

CAS Divisions and Departments

Biological and Applied Health Sciences  

Public Health Sciences 
Speech Pathology 

Education and Counseling 
Fine Arts and Humanities 



Mathematical and Physical Sciences 

Physics and Computer Science  

Social and Behavioral Sciences 

Communication Studies 
Mass Communication 
Political Science 


Undergraduate Degrees Offered

Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) with majors in:

Art Education 
Communication Studies 
Elementary Education 
English/English Education 
French Education  
Mass Communication 


Middle School Education 
Music-Jazz Studies Concentration 
Music Liberal Arts  
Political Science 
Social Studies Education 
Spanish Education  


Bachelor of Music (B.M.) with majors in:

Music Education 
Music Performance Instrumental 
Music Performance - Piano 
Music Performance Voice 

Bachelor of Science (B.S.) with majors in:

Biology Education 
Biology Pre-Medical  
Chemistry Education 
Chemistry Pre-Pharmacy  
Chemistry Pre-Professional  
Chemistry A.C.S.  


Computer Information Systems 
Computer Science 
Data Science  
Mathematics Education 
Psychological Science  
Pre-Medical Psychology  
Public Health Sciences 
Speech Pathology 


Graduate Degrees Offered

Master of Arts (M.A.)  
Master of Arts in Teaching (M.A.T.)  
Master of Public Health in Health Equity (M.P.H.) 
Doctorate in Educational Leadership (Ed. D.)  

Certificates Offered

Entrepreneurship Certificate  
Health Communication Certificate 
Spanish for Health Professionals Certificate  

Requirements for the Undergraduate Degree

In the College of Arts and Sciences, a candidate for the degree must complete a minimum of 120 semester hours of course work with at least a 2.0 cumulative average in an approved program. Each program must include the core curriculum, a major, and a minor (or a double concentration in place of the minor). The candidate must also pass a comprehensive/performance/capstone examination in his/her major field usually in the senior year. A student who has not passed the Senior Comprehensive, or all parts of the Praxis Exam or GRE for the departments/divisions which allow these tests to be used as a substitute for the Senior Comprehensive, will not be allowed to participate in the commencement ceremony or to receive a diploma. Approved substitutions for the Senior Comprehensive are stated in the departmental sections.


Each candidate for a degree in the College must complete an approved major concentration of at least twenty-four, and no more than seventy-three, semester hours. Eighteen hours of these must be completed at Xavier. A minimum GPA of 2.0 is required by the College in the major field, but individual departments/divisions may require a higher average. Students are expected to receive a “C” grade or better in each course in their major. The approved programs are listed under the departments/divisions which offer them.

See Second Bachelor’s Degree  for more information about earning a second degree.

See Requirements for more information about earning a double major .

Change of Major or Minor

The student who wishes to transfer from one major or minor department/division to another must observe the following procedures:

  1. Report to the Registrar’s Office to obtain a request for change of department/division form;
  2. Consult the Head of the prospective department/division to ascertain whether the Head is in favor of the change;
  3. Obtain written approval from the current departmental/division Head; and
  4. Return to the Head of the prospective department/division to obtain written approval.
  5. Return the completed form to the Registrar’s Office.

The student must follow the academic program and requirements of the department/division that are in effect at the time of transfer.


Each student’s program of study must include a minor in an academic discipline other than the major discipline. The minor is composed of not less than 18 or more than 21 semester hours. When a major curriculum has a “built-in” minor, the student is required to complete that minor. Each student must declare a minor at the beginning of the junior year unless it has already been declared or has been determined by the major. Declaration of the minor is completed when the appropriate form is submitted to the Registrar’s Office by the student.

Prescribed minors are found in this catalog within the descriptions of the various departments/divisions which offer them. Successful completion of an official minor will be designated on the student’s official record. The official minor designation requires that a minimum of nine (9) of these hours be completed at Xavier.

A student may also satisfy the minor requirement by successfully completing an interdisciplinary minor, which has been approved by the Academic Council of the College, or by successfully completing a double concentration. A double concentration consists of at least twelve hours in each of two disciplines. The specific twelve hours must be approved by the Head of the student’s major department/division and the head of the other two departments/divisions as well as the Dean of the College.

Any exceptions to the above must be approved by the student’s Department Head and the Dean of the College.

The Core Curriculum

Xavier University of Louisiana’s Core Curriculum (the Core) emphasizes Xavier’s identity as a Catholic and historically Black institution and supports the goal that students should achieve both breadth and depth of knowledge in the liberal arts. The Core enriches the undergraduate educational experience by exposing students to integrative approaches in learning and by cultivating nuanced perspectives for engaging in thought and in action the major questions of their lives. Required of all undergraduate students in the College of Arts and Sciences, the 40 credit hours of the Core provide the foundation and, together with the major program of study, contribute to a well-rounded education.

The following Learning Outcomes of the Core Curriculum include skills, knowledge, and values that reinforce Xavier’s mission and its identity as a Catholic and historically Black university.

  1. Students will be able to communicate effectively through writing and speaking.
  2. Students will be able to use quantitative, empirical, and critical reasoning skills to solve problems.
  3. Students will be able to incorporate diverse cultural perspectives in their analysis of issues, from local to global, and to recognize the interconnectivity of human experience.
  4. Students will be able to demonstrate a science-based understanding of the natural world.
  5. Students will be able to interpret and evaluate diverse forms of human expression.
  6. Students will apply socially responsible and ethical principles to promote equity and sustainability in ways that align with Xavier’s mission as a historically Black and Catholic institution.

The Core helps to prepare students for lifelong learning and ethical living. It includes courses that frame an integrative academic experience, support student’s work in their major, and provide the tools to synthesize and apply knowledge, skills, and values. The Core requires students to engage in a continuous search to make meaningful connections by incorporating and applying multiple perspectives and methodologies to find solutions to complex problems. It also includes bookend courses that highlight Xavier’s unique mission. By the time Xavier students complete their course of studies, they are better equipped to exercise global leadership towards the creation of a more just and humane society.

Three skills are embedded throughout the different areas of the Core Curriculum. In practice, the skills of writing, speaking, and critical thinking are all interdependent. Sharpening one of them leads to greater command of the others. The ability to communicate ideas clearly, accurately, ethically, and in an engaging way is essential to success in both academic and professional life.

Oral Communication skills allow students to transmit ideas appropriately in spoken form based on audience, purpose, and context, and to listen with critical and literal comprehension. Integrating Oral Communication across the curriculum enhances students’ ability to analyze and construct messages critically, accomplish communicative goals, and apply ethical communication principles.

Written Communication skills allow students to express ideas clearly and cohesively in multiple written forms to different intended audiences. Integrating Writing across the curriculum enhances students’ ability to produce writing of increasing complexity that has a clear central purpose, appropriate structure, and compelling argument.

Critical Thinking skills allow students to analyze, assess, and reach informed and logical conclusions about different subjects, issues, or concerns. Integrating Critical Thinking across the curriculum enhances students’ ability to investigate increasingly complex questions and produce rational conclusions from multiple perspectives.


Students begin their intellectual exploration during their early years; this will prepare them for more integrated and applied learning as they advance through the curriculum. Students progress through the Core in three distinct stages: 1) Foundations at Xavier; 2) Explorations in the Liberal Arts; and 3) Engagements with Knowledge and Practice.

Special Note:
Courses that fulfill the core may be counted toward majors and minors except as noted for XCOR 3010 /XCOR 3020 .


Foundations at Xavier introduces Xavier students to college-level written and spoken rhetoric, quantitative reasoning, and critical thinking and writing skills necessary for success in school and in life. The Experience courses expand both knowledge and skills, and shape the habits of mind that lie at the heart of what it means to live Xavier’s mission. In addition to promoting general academic skills, these courses help students explore issues of self-identity and foster an examination of their individual roles within larger communities. These Experience courses also offer opportunities to create new communities among students and to develop unique mentoring relationships with professors.

Explorations in the Liberal Arts (21 hours)

Explorations courses build on the Foundational requirements and foster the breadth of knowledge, skills, and values essential to a well-rounded, liberal arts education within the intellectual space of a Catholic and historically Black university. These categories are not organized by department or discipline, but by areas of inquiry. It is expected that these areas may inspire the creation of new courses - or revisions to existing ones - that will expand the interconnectivity of different perspectives and blur the lines of disciplinary isolation. The courses in any particular category might come from several disciplines. If an individual course is approved for multiple Explorations categories, students may only count that course to fulfill one of the categories. Although Explorations courses can be taken any time before graduation, it is recommended that students complete these required courses during their first two years so that they are better able to integrate all areas of inquiry into their overall academic experience.

*Students must take at least one course from each area below.

Engagements with Knowledge and Practice (6 hours)

Engagements courses accentuate integrative and applied learning. Catholic intellectual tradition emphasizes that learning is most meaningful when difficult questions are investigated from a variety of perspectives. The Engagements courses allow students to explore connections between disciplines and provide opportunities to study a “big idea” topic from multiple disciplinary perspectives in order to find solutions to complex problems. The Engagements seminars prepare students to contribute to the promotion of a more just and humane society by enhancing students’ preparedness to assume roles of leadership and service in a global society.


  • Instructors are faculty from a variety of disciplines.
  • Interdisciplinary and/or team-taught courses are encouraged.
  • Courses can be listed (and cross-listed) under their disciplinary prefixes, as well as under a specific XCOR course number. Please visit for the latest cross-listings.
  • Engagements courses should not have prerequisites other than those listed below.
  • Students may not count Engagements courses towards the requirements of a first major.
  • Students with more than one major may count Engagements courses towards the fulfillment of the requirements for one of those majors.
  • All students may count Engagements courses towards the fulfillment of the requirements of a minor.

Engaging the Mission (3 hours)

Courses approved in this category challenge students to think more deeply about ideas, practices, and values that align with Xavier’s mission and reinforce critical thinking, as well as oral and written communication skills. Students learn to integrate diverse perspectives with a breadth and depth of knowledge, while also utilizing different, methodologies to find solutions to complex problems. Students choose from a variety of unique seminar topics developed by faculty and organized around different “big ideas.” Service learning courses are encouraged. Prerequisite: XCOR 1011  or XCOR 1012 ; completed at least 60 hrs.

Engaging Global Issues (3 hours)

Courses approved in this category challenge students to explore particular social, cultural, economic, or political issues of global significance, and reinforce critical thinking, as well as oral and written communication skills. Students learn to integrate diverse perspectives with a breadth and depth of knowledge, while also utilizing different, methodologies to find solutions to complex problems. tudents choose from a variety of unique seminar topics developed by faculty and organized around different “big ideas.” International study courses are encouraged. Students who earn at least 12 hrs. in an international study abroad program receive exemption from the Engaging Global Issues requirement. Prerequisite: XCOR 1011  or XCOR 1012 ; completed at least 60 hrs.

Senior Capstone (0 hours)

Integrated with major requirements, this course marks the culminating experience for seniors in which students synthesize, integrate, and apply the knowledge and skills gained in all of their previous coursework at Xavier. It should include multiple components that align with the Core Learning Outcomes. These courses exist as varying credit hours within the major and, therefore, count as zero hours within the Core Curriculum.