The Curriculum and Academic Opportunities

General Education Rationale and Requirements

Centre College’s flexible graduation requirements and individualized mentoring by faculty members will prepare you to choose courses that build upon your existing strengths and talents, while also taking you to new levels of achievement. The curriculum prepares Centre graduates for lives of meaningful work and sustained curiosity. By the time you graduate, you will have taken a set of courses unique to you that will empower you to engage with, to learn from, and to contribute to your chosen communities—and the world beyond them.

The General Education Curriculum is designed to complement, not compete with, your major. Only three general education courses (two first-year seminars and a collaborative interdisciplinary capstone) will take place at specific moments during your academic journey. With guidance from your advisor, you will decide how and when to pursue the other course requirements.

In your two first-year seminar courses you will meet other first-year students, embrace your new role in the Centre College community, and build on your existing skills in writing and in oral communication. Generally, you will also take courses in a second language and in math during your first two years. You will explore the three main academic divisions of the College: the Arts and Humanities, Social Studies, and Science and Mathematics, selecting courses that interest you from a wide menu of options. The Centre curriculum will also challenge you to experience new aspects of the world, focusing on concrete applications of your academic pursuits through areas such as Arts Engagement, Global Engagement, Community-Based Learning, Mentored Research, or Internships. You will join others in analyzing sustainability and difference and equity, two pressing areas of social responsibility. Lastly, as a capstone, you will complete an interdisciplinary seminar during your junior or senior year. This seminar will push you to draw upon your major and other experiences to think critically and creatively about complex issues in the world today while working as part of a team. You may fulfill many of your general education requirements as you complete the requirements for your major or minor, and you may often fulfill multiple general education requirements while studying away or abroad for a long term. Whenever possible, we work to offer you great variety in this curriculum and also to reward you for the experiences you want to have while at Centre, whether those be in you major or minor or in your work off campus.

Centre College’s motto is doctrina lux mentis, Latin for “learning is the light of the mind.” We use this motto to remind us of our collective mission. As a Centre College student, you will join a community of scholars who value learning as an endeavor that not only illuminates the mind but also shines the light of understanding on the world and all those within it. This motto gives its name to three of the core experiences in Centre’s General Education Curriculum: Doctrina Lux Mentis (DLM) I, II, and III. The first two DLM courses (110 and 120, called "The Craft of Writing" and "The Art of Speaking" respectively) are skill-enhancing seminar courses taken in your first year, one in the fall and one in the spring, whereas DLM III (called "Interdisciplinary Collaboration") serves as the capstone experience in your junior or senior year.

DLM Courses I (110) and II (120)

DLM I and II courses are small-group learning environments that engage first-year students in intensive educational experiences to develop intellectual skills—to read critically, think logically, and communicate effectively. DLM I ("The Craft of Writing") emphasizes writing skills, while DLM II ("The Art of Speaking") emphasizes oral communication skills. Both courses include attention to imagination, creativity, reasoning, problem-solving, integration of ideas, and judgment—all skills essential to critical thinking and academic success.

Your DLM professors will come from across the campus and help you understand your own processes of learning and communicating better, whether that means helping you through multiple drafts of a paper, encouraging written reflection, mentoring you in leading a group discussion, or workshopping a formal presentation with you.

DLM courses may not count toward any major or minor.

Second Language Courses

You live in an interdependent, globalized world. The ability to understand and communicate in multiple languages serves as a key to help you understand the basic modes of thought, life, and expression of other cultures. Knowledge of other cultures will contribute in essential ways to your responsible engagement in this world. In your second language courses you will develop cross-cultural and linguistic skills that will aid you later in life.

If you place above the introductory level in second language on our placement test, you will take at least one additional college-level language course conducted in that language. If you do not yet have introductory second language skills—or you would prefer to start learning a new language—you must take at least the two-course introductory sequence in that language.

You can enroll in courses in the following languages at Centre (in alphabetical order): Arabic, French, German, ancient Greek, Japanese, Latin, Mandarin Chinese, and Spanish.

If you are an international student (meaning a permanent resident of a country other than the United States) and English is not a native language, you will generally automatically fulfill your second language requirement through your coursework in English.  You are certainly welcome to study an additional language during your time at Centre.


Mathematics is a universal language, a creative practice, and a way of interpreting the world around us; it empowers deeper understanding of any discipline, problem, or endeavor.  Therefore, all Centre students will take a mathematics course. Your course placement will be determined by the results of your placement test.


Student performance in writing will be evaluated at the end of the first long term of enrollment. At that time, students whose writing is judged to be competent will have satisfied the writing requirement. Students whose writing is judged to fall short of competency will be required to submit a satisfactory three-page portfolio to the Committee on Student Writing by the end of the spring term of the first year or earn a grade of C- or higher in ENG 170 (Topics in Writing) by the end of the sophomore year.

Exploration (E)

In your coursework you will explore many different disciplines, inspiring a lifetime of learning about the human understanding of the world, an understanding that you will begin contributing to yourself. You will work closely with your faculty advisor to select a wide range of courses, especially in your first and second years, because many students uncover unexpected interests and even new career directions in these first two years. The Exploration requirement has very few restrictions, provided that you complete six courses from six different disciplines: two each from each of the three divisions, Arts & Humanities (Division 1), Social Studies (Division 2), and Science & Mathematics (Division 3). Courses that satisfy this requirement are tagged “E1”, "E2", and "E3" in the schedule of classes.

In Exploration courses you will continue to build intellectual confidence, self-efficacy, and learning skills as you expand your knowledge. You will practice reading carefully and critically, speaking with clarity and confidence, and writing persuasively and thoughtfully; these courses will stimulate your curiosity, empathy, critical-thinking, problem-solving, and leadership abilities.

Exploration courses may count toward majors and minors, but they may also be elective courses. Except for a few courses requiring basic math competency, these courses have no prerequisites.

Arts & Humanities (two courses in two different disciplines): In exploring the Arts & Humanities you will engage with works of creative and intellectual expression. The Arts and Humanities provide methods for exploring the varied expression of human experience and the means of participating in that expression. Through the use of diverse forms of communication, exposure to multiple perspectives, and engagement of the imagination, you will develop the capacity for creativity, risk-taking, problem-solving, personal insight, and empathy.

Social Studies (two courses in two different disciplines): In Social Studies courses you will engage actively and empathetically with significant social issues from various points of view. The study of different cultures and communities— contemporary, historical, or prehistorical—develops your capacity to understand the points of view, sentiments, and intentions of others. Through the exploration and study of multiple peoples and perspectives, you will learn to appreciate the multiplicity of human worldviews, to explore your own identity, to identify and challenge injustice, and to work towards a more equitable society.

Sciences & Mathematics (two courses in two different disciplines, including at least one laboratory course): In your Science & Mathematics exploration courses, you will learn about the natural world and explore the universe through observation, modeling, experimentation, programming, and data analysis as you build your analytical and problem-solving skills. In addition to the required mathematics course, students may further deepen their mathematical knowledge and skills through mathematics exploration courses.

Connection Courses

The value of a Centre education is not simply in building intellectual breadth and academic skills; rather, its value manifests itself through the responsible application of your education to benefit society, which in turn brings purpose, meaning, and fulfillment to your life. Through Connection courses, students practice applying their knowledge and skills in meaningful and practical ways, addressing complex societal problems and grappling with important questions such as: How will I serve my community? How will my leadership remove systemic barriers to equity and inclusion? How will I protect the sustainability of the planet and its people?

You will take focused on four areas that are explicitly designed to connect theory with practice. At least two of these courses will be explicitly experiential, while another two will engage directly with the topics of human difference and equity and environmental sustainability.

All Connection courses (Experiential, Difference and Equity, and Sustainability) may count towards majors or minors except INT 400.

While a single course may not fulfill both the Exploration and Experiential requirements, a single course may meet an Exploration requirement and either the Difference and Equity requirement or the Sustainability requirement.


Experiential Learning

Experiential Learning courses in this Connection category give you practice in actively engaging with people, materials, and ideas with the aim of contributing to a greater social endeavor. Centre College offers many Experiential Learning opportunities to help you apply and extend your knowledge and skills through academically rigorous, hands-on learning activities. You will complete at least two courses (for a total of at least 4 credits) from two of the following five areas: Arts Engagement, Global Engagement, Community-Based Learning, Mentored Research, and Internships, as described below.

Arts Engagement (A) courses engage you in applying principles, refining skills, and mastering techniques through arts projects in areas like Creative Writing, Music, Studio Art, and Theatre. These courses hone your self-awareness, tap into your creativity, and develop your appreciation of artistic processes, risk-taking, and empathy. Courses that satisfy this requirement are tagged “A” in the schedule of classes.

Global Engagement (G) courses help you to explore cultures, life experiences, and worldviews different from your own. In these courses you will explore the world as an interrelated system. You may earn credit for this category by participating in study abroad courses. Courses that satisfy this requirement are tagged “G” in the schedule of classes.

Community-Based Learning (C) courses include field-based learning experiences where students and community partners support and learn from one another. These courses create unique opportunities for you to participate in, learn about, and serve communities beyond campus. Courses that satisfy this requirement are tagged “C” in the schedule of classes. 

Mentored Research allows you to construct new knowledge in your disciplinary field of interest.  Guided by a mentor, you will apply and test the theories and procedures common to your discipline, providing new insight as you gather evidence about an unanswered question, contested issue, or under-recognized thought leader in your field. Such work may inspire you to become a research scholar as a career goal, but at minimum it will provide keen insight into the ethical conduct of research and a researcher’s responsibility to reflect on their own biases, and that of other researchers, as they interpret evidence and formulate their own conclusions. Courses that satisfy this requirement are tagged "R" in the schedule of classes. All disciplines at Centre may offer a course numbered 402, “Research Participation,” all of which count toward this requirement.

Internships allow you to connect skills and knowledge from the classroom with career exploration. Academic-credit internships (listed as INT 400 in the course catalogue) provide two levels of supervision: by a Centre faculty member and by an on-site supervisor.  To successfully earn your credits, you must complete a substantive academic component (determined with your faculty supervisor) and conduct yourself with professionalism throughout your internship.  Internships are available after you have completed your first year at Centre. Please consult the Center for Career and Professional Development for more information.

Difference & Equity (D)  

Difference & Equity general education courses will help prepare you for effective and empathetic leadership and service in diverse communities within and beyond Centre. In your Difference and & Equity course you will critique forms of systemic oppression and marginalization based on difference, identify how these structures enable and constrain agency and inform visions of equity and justice, engage with diverse lived experiences, and examine the ways in which your place in the social world relates to systems of power.

Identity differences span a network of factors (listed alphabetically), including age, citizenship status, class, disability, ethnicity, faith background, gender expression, gender identity, geographic region, national origin, neurodiversity, race, and sexual orientation. This requirement ensures that every student will take at least one course that focuses explicitly on the structural challenges and opportunities faced by particular individuals and groups. Courses that satisfy this requirement are tagged “D” in the schedule of classes.

Sustainability (S)

Sustainability is a core value of Centre College. Your sustainability course will help you and your peers envision local and global environmental solutions for the 21st century and beyond. You will be introduced to thinking about environmental sustainability in ways that highlight the interdependence of social, economic, and ecological relationships in our communities. A course focused on environmental sustainability will examine how individuals, communities, and global societies can meet human needs without compromising the interconnected environmental systems upon which future generations depend. You will also analyze your own choices and behaviors in the context of environmental opportunities and constraints. Courses that satisfy this requirement are tagged “S” in the schedule of classes.

Interdisciplinary Collaboration: DLM III (DLM 310)

This capstone course will challenge you to work with students from different disciplines, as you think critically about some of the world’s most pressing issues together. These interdisciplinary, upper-level courses are taken in the junior or senior year. They call upon the application of knowledge and skills developed during your broad exploration of the Centre curriculum, including your major or minor. You will work together with a group of student-scholars from across the College in this course, closing your Centre career by returning to Centre’s motto, doctrina lux mentis—learning, the light of the mind. This capstone experience will help you move on from Centre with confidence, preparing you to move from Centre, out.

DLM courses may not count toward and major or minor. 

General Education Summary

Upon completion of the requirements and the attainment of a Bachelor’s degree from Centre College, each graduate of the College will develop their skills in Cognition, Communication, Community, Connection, Creativity, and Critical Thinking:

  1. Cognition: Develop strategies to evaluate the process of learning and thinking;
  2. Communication: Effectively write, speak, and read using a variety of modes including numbers, images, and a second language;
  3. Community: Respectfully engage with a range of diverse social and ecological communities;
  4. Connection: Ask questions and solve problems in ways that connect different academic disciplines and perspectives;
  5. Creativity: Think and act in innovative and creative ways;
  6. Critical Thinking: Use knowledge and skills to analyze your world and to solve complex problems.

Summary of Requirements


DLM 110 ("The Craft of Writing") & 120 ("The Art of Speaking")

2 courses; 6 credit hours

Second Language

1-2 courses; 3-8 credit hours


1 course; 3 credit hours


0-1 course; 0-3 credit hours

Arts and Humanities

2 courses; 6 credit hours

Social Studies

2 courses; 6 credit hours

Science and Math

2 courses; 7-8 credit hours

Difference and Equity

1 course; 0-4 credit hours


1 course; 0-4 credit hours

Experiential Learning

2 courses; 4-8 credit hours

DLM 310 ("Interdisciplinary Collaboration") 

1 course; 3 credit hours

TOTAL (for General Education)

15-18 courses; 38-59 credit hours

TOTAL REQUIRED FOR GRADUATION (General Education + Major + electives)

110 credit hours


Organization and Structure of the Academic Program—Majors and Minors

The College’s instructional program is organized into three academic divisions—humanities, social studies, and science and mathematics—each chaired by a member of the faculty under the general oversight of the Dean of the College. The work of each division is carried out through separate program committees representing the various academic disciplines. Major Program Committees are comprised of faculty members and one or two student members. Major and minor areas of concentration offered within the divisions are as follows*:

Humanities (Division I)

Majors: art history, studio art, Chinese, classical studies, English, French, German studies, music, philosophy, Spanish, theatre.

Minors: art history, studio art, Chinese, classical studies, creative writing, English, film studies, French, German studies, music, philosophy, Spanish, theatre.

Social Studies (Division II)

Majors: anthropology/sociology, business, economics and finance, history, international studies, politics, religion.

Minors: anthropology, education, history, international studies, politics, religion, sociology.

Science and Mathematics (Division III)

Majors: behavioral neuroscience, biochemistry and molecular biology, biology, chemical physics, chemistry, computer science, data science, mathematics, physics, psychology.

Minors: behavioral neuroscience, biology, chemistry, computer science, data science, health and medical studies, engineering, mathematics, physics, psychology.

Interdisciplinary (cross-divisional)

Major: environmental studies.

Minors: African and African American studies (I), Asian studies (I), environmental studies (II), gender studies (II), Latin American studies (I), linguistics (I), Middle Eastern studies (II), social justice (II). For administrative purposes, these programs report to the noted division.

*One major (no minor) is required for the degree. Students may choose a maximum of two majors and one minor or one major and two minors.

Double Majors

Students may choose to complete two majors during their four years at Centre. This option allows students to expand their academic credentials and explore sometimes quite different personal interests. Some recent combinations include economics and finance and mathematics, Spanish and international studies, psychology and philosophy. Students who double major have an advisor from each program.

Students declaring more than a single major must think carefully about their ability to complete all of their declared major and minor requirements, taking into consideration other plans such as study abroad and/or internships and research. The College does not guarantee that a student can complete more than one major in four years, and exceptions to major and minor requirements cannot be made due to conflicts with requirements in the primary major or due to study abroad.

Self-Designed Majors

In addition to the standard majors, students may also develop a major of their own design. They develop their personal program of junior-senior major study in conjunction with a faculty committee. The completed self-designed major proposal is then submitted for approval by the Academic Standards Committee. By necessity, self-designed majors must rely, substantially, on the strengths and expertise of our faculty and our course offerings. Recently approved self-designed majors include Asian studies, Middle Eastern studies, public policy, film studies, and social justice. More detailed information is available from the Office of the Assistant Dean and Director of Student Academic Support. Self-designed minors are not permitted.

Calendars and Credit Hours

The credit hour is the basic unit of credit and credit hours are equivalent to semester hours. The credit hour provides one important measure by which progress toward the degree is gauged.  The assignment of credit hours to coursework is not strictly tied to the number of class hours per week. The College recognizes that subject matter, pedagogical methods, and assessment tools will influence the design of any credit-bearing activity, including the frequency and duration of formally-structured faculty-student interactions.

The academic calendar consists of two 13-week terms (fall and spring) and a 3-week term in January (CentreTerm), plus a final exam period at the end of each term. In the fall and spring terms, three credit hour courses typically meet for one hour three days a week or for an hour and a half two days a week. In the January term (CentreTerm), three credit hour courses typically meet for three hours a day four or five days a week.

One credit hour is granted for a minimum of three hours of student academic work per week, on average, for the fall and spring terms. In the CentreTerm, all courses carry three credit hours, and a minimum of 36 hours of student academic work per week on average is expected.  Academic work includes formal faculty-student interactions (lectures, seminars, laboratories, supervised field work, tutorials, applied and studio instruction, etc.) as well as out-of-class activities such as student-instructor conferences, homework, research, writing and revision, reading, student collaborative and group work, community engaged experiences, academic internship work, practica, recitals, rehearsals, and reflection on all aspects of the coursework.

Courses, including credit-hour assignment, are approved by the faculty through a process that requires review and action by the appropriate academic program as well as the curriculum committee.

Study Abroad and Study Away

We consider living and studying in a foreign culture to be an integral part of a liberal arts education, and study abroad has become one of the hallmarks of a Centre education. We also have study-away programs that allow students to study and work in a major city within the United States. Of the graduating seniors this year, 74.48% of them studied off campus once, 27.27% studied off campus twice, and 10.14% studied off campus three times, and 1.75% studied off campus four or more times. We had one student study abroad six times, helping to make Centre one of the top colleges in the nation where off-campus study is so pervasive and important.

Residential Programs

Centre offers a number of different opportunities for international study. Centre-in-London, Centre-in-Strasbourg, and Centre-in-the-Yucatan are Centre faculty-led programs in the U.K., France, and Mexico. In partnership with Rhodes and Sewannee Colleges, Centre offers faculty-led study abroad opportunities each Fall in Accra, Ghana and in Ecuador, where students study in the capital city of Quito before their 3 week study experience in the Galapagos. Centre-in-England (at the University of Reading), Centre-in-Glasgow (at the University of Glasgow), and Centre-in-China (in Shanghai) are Centre's residential programs in the U.K. and China. Six exchange programs bring foreign students to our campus as well as allowing Centre students to study for a semester at Akita International University in Japan; at Yamaguchi Prefectural University in Japan; at one of five universities in Northern Ireland; at Royal Thimphu College in Bhutan; at Rose Bruford College of Theatre & Performance; or at Marista University in Merida, Mexico. In addition to the program at Marista University, intensive language immersion programs are offered in Nantes, France and through Centre’s special partnership with the Kentucky Institute for International Studies in Alicante, Spain. 2024 will mark the first year partnering with Kalamazoo College and host institution, Friedrich-Alexander-University to offer a German-language intensive study abroad experience in Erlangen, Germany. 

Our premier study-away programs are in Washington, D.C. and New York City, where students do a full-time internship along with taking courses relevant to the location.

Many students find their sophomore or junior year is the best time to participate in an off-campus program. However, rising sophomores, juniors, and seniors all are eligible to apply. Because these are not primarily language programs, students do not need to have studied French, Spanish, Chinese, or Japanese to study in France, Mexico, Ecuador, China, or Japan. The cost is the same as the cost of studying on the Danville campus, except for a $400 deposit/surcharge and airfare. Special endowed funds are available on a competitive basis to help students with financial need to cover these costs.

CentreTerm and Summer Programs

In addition to these semester programs, during each CentreTerm Centre faculty members lead groups of students to study in their areas of expertise around the world. Recent sites include Barbados, El Salvador, Fiji, Tahiti, Finland, Germany, India, Ireland, Israel-Palestine, Japan, Myanmar and Thailand, New Zealand, and South Africa. Students with intermediate Spanish skills can elect to do a CentreTerm internship through our Merida program in Mexico. In addition to a few courses offered by Centre faculty, each summer the Kentucky Institute for International Studies sponsors more than 20 academic programs that are popular among our students.

Non-Centre-Run Programs Abroad

Students take a temporary leave of absence from Centre to study in semester-long programs sponsored by outside providers. Financial considerations prevent some students from taking this option, since students who are on leaves of absence are not eligible to receive any Centre money and, by law, our financial aid office is not allowed to process state or federal aid due the student. Students planning to participate in a non-Centre program should get prior approval from the Center for Global Citizenship and the Registrar to make certain that all courses will count toward a Centre degree.

Research Opportunities for Students

Undergraduate research is an inquiry-based form of active learning that allows a student to practice a discipline rather than simply hearing about it in a classroom. At Centre College, undergraduate research may be an independent project, a collaborative project with a faculty mentor, or a project that occurs at another institution. These projects may be student or faculty initiated. While the majority of research takes place in the summer, academic-year opportunities are common. The College may provide summer housing, stipends, and research materials to students engaged in research. Outside grants are also available. Undergraduate research students are encouraged to present at Centre's annual undergraduate research, internship, and creative endeavors (RICE) symposium. These oral or poster presentations are uploaded and preserved in an institutional repository. Many students also present their work at regional, state, and national conference meetings.

The Brown Fellows Program

In partnership with the James Graham Brown Foundation, Centre launched the Brown Fellows Program in 2009. The initiative is the premier scholarship and enrichment program in Kentucky and is one of the nation’s elite fellowship programs. The program helps students maximize their academic, personal, and leadership potential.

The John C. Young Program

The John C. Young Scholars Program is a senior honors program, which enables a select group of outstanding senior students to engage in independent study and research in their major field or in an interdisciplinary area. The scholars work closely with a faculty mentor and receive financial support for research and travel. They present their results at a public symposium in late spring. This program was initiated through an Excellence-in-Undergraduate-Education grant from the Knight Foundation. Centre was one of eight leading liberal arts colleges (Carleton, Macalester, and Swarthmore, for example) to receive the first of these awards to encourage increased collaboration between faculty and students on extra-class intellectual activities. Applications for participation are submitted in the spring of one's junior year.

Undergraduate and Postgraduate Fellowships

A fellowship is an opportunity for growth sponsored by an organization outside of Centre College. Fellowships encompass study, research, leadership, and service activities at the regional, national, and international levels. They can fund postgraduate degrees, help pay part of undergraduate costs at Centre, or send students overseas for the summer. Regardless of the type, sponsoring organizations use competitive application processes to choose candidates who best exemplify selection criteria.

The Office of Fellowships is the primary on-campus resource for students and alumni wanting to explore and pursue competitive fellowships. The office offers one-on-one advising and informational sessions to help students identify opportunities appropriate for their goals. The office also provides individualized mentoring throughout the application and interview processes. Although the pursuit of fellowships is challenging and results are never guaranteed, the application process is a significant learning opportunity and can help students deepen their understanding of themselves and their goals.

In the last five years, Centre students have been awarded fellowships through the following national and international foundations: Boren Scholarship, Cralle Fellowship (4), Critical Language Scholarship (2), DAAD RISE Germany, Doris Duke Conservation Scholars (2), Fulbright U.S. Student Program (8), Gilman Scholarship (8), Humanity in Action (2), JET Program (9), Knight-Hennessy Scholars, John R. Lewis Scholars and Fellows (2), NSF Graduate Research Fellowship, Obama Voyager Scholarship, Peace Corps (3), PPIA Junior Summer Institute (2), Rotary Global Grant Scholarship (3), Truman Scholarship, and Schwarzman Scholars.

Students interested in fellowships should contact Dr. Robert Schalkoff, director of the Office of Fellowships ( Inquiries are encouraged as early as the first year.



Technology Literacy

Students at Centre College are frequently exposed to and engaged with technology, gaining proficiency in and out of the classroom. Centre students gain computer literacy skills throughout their four years. First-year students are immersed in the Finding Your Centre (FYC) program in their first semester at Centre College, during which they are provided with instruction and support on using Moodle, the web portal (CentreNet), document/cloud storage, and printing services. During FYC, first-year students are introduced to library staff, services and resources. Students receive instruction on the research process, using the library catalog, searching electronic databases, source evaluation, and citing sources. Students will utilize these skills throughout their four years in most of their classes. Students have access to desktop computers in the library. Laptops, external hard drives, chargers, and equipment for technology-based projects are available for checkout. Students also complete a variety of technology-based assignments in their required first-year seminars, in all general education courses, and in courses throughout the curriculum. They learn to use spreadsheets, computer simulations, statistical programs, and graphical software. In their upper-level courses, they also learn to use discipline-specific software and technologies. Many courses across the curriculum and at all levels of study require the use of presentation software to complement the delivery of oral presentations. Oral and written communication are explicit student learning goals for the first-year studies courses and for our general education curriculum.

Assistance for technology-based projects and assignments is available through the Center for Teaching and Learning, as well as via the Digital Scholarship and Instructional Services of the library. In recent classes, students have created videos and podcasts, made digital presentations, composed and illustrated digital stories, published blogs, developed apps, and created websites. In addition, students have access to the Media Lab, where they can learn how to use more advanced software programs such as Adobe Creative Cloud, iLife, Comic Life, and Anime Studio, as well as an Audio Visual Suite that provides a sound proofing barrier to record podcasts and audio for video-related projects. In addition, this space includes a green screen wall that is used when recording video.

Outside of the classroom, the ITS Technology Support Center provides a central location for computer, mobile device and software support and configuration assistance. Throughout campus, students have access to public computers with a host of general and specialized software. Students with their own computers and/or mobile devices can access campus systems as well as the Internet most everywhere on campus using Centre’s pervasive wireless and wired campus network. From the campus portal system, CentreNet, students can access their email accounts, Microsoft Office 365 (web-based version), Moodle, Teams and select cloud-based document repositories as well as online student registration, class schedules, and degree program planning tools. Students can also install the full Microsoft Office suite on their personal systems under the College’s licensing agreement. In addition to general office automation products, students will have access to course specific software on an as needed basis. This includes applications like RStudio, IBM's Stata and SPSS statistical software, Perkins Elmer's ChemDraw, and ESRI's ARC GIS suite. Our students are also provided with access to many online departmental services from career and graduate school planning resources to discipline-based research services. Centre students have access to and use a variety of sophisticated electronic tools in their pursuit of academic success and excellence.


The Director of Student Academic Support coordinates academic advising and works closely with students experiencing significant academic issues. All faculty members (plus selected administrators) serve as academic advisors to students. Students have general advisors—usually matched by interests—during their first and second years at Centre. Students declare a major or majors in the spring of the sophomore year and are assigned an academic advisor in the declared major discipline. The Director of Student Academic Support also coordinates efforts with the Director of the Centre Learning Commons to help students who experience academic difficulty, particularly in the first two years at Centre.

In addition, the Director of Student Academic Support works closely with the Coordinator of the FYC (Finding Your Centre) Program to link multiple academic support systems for first-year students. All first-time, first-year students take the FYC 001: Finding Your Centre course in the fall of the first year. FYC 001 is a one-credit-hour, graded (A-U) course designed to support students as they navigate the transition from high school to college, and help them develop the knowledge and skills that they need to be successful at Centre. Topics covered in FYC include “learning how to learn” on a college-level, understanding one’s role and responsibility as a member of the Centre community, campus resources and policies, and developing a sense of belonging. Each section of FYC 001 is taught by a faculty or staff instructor with support from an upper-class peer mentor. For questions or additional information, contact the Director of First-year Programming and Success, Ansley Bredar.

The Centre Learning Commons

The mission of the Centre Learning Commons (CLC) is to maximize the academic success and personal growth of all Centre students. This is achieved through collaborative relationships among many organizational areas of the college such as Academic Affairs, The Library, the Center for Teaching and Learning, and the Office of Diversity and Inclusion. Additional collaborators include the Center for Career and Professional Development, Counseling Services, Title IX, Athletics, Student Life, Student Government, and individual academic programs.

The CLC draws together and synchronizes existing College-wide initiatives and combines these with an ever-expanding array of student support services, campus resources, and evidence-based programming known to increase students’ academic success and flourishing. Students, faculty, and staff benefit from the CLC’s welcoming, positive, and inclusive ethos, its effective programming, and its own learning culture; assessing, reflecting, collaborating, listening, researching, innovating, and continuously improving.

The Centre Learning Commons (CLC) is located on the main floor of the Grace Doherty Library in Crounse Hall, adjacent to Einstein’s Bagels. It is open during the library’s hours of operation. The CLC includes office suites, innovative and tech-savvy spaces for individual and group study, seminar rooms, and an information kiosk. CLC programming and resources include, but are not limited to, comprehensive and inclusive academic peer tutoring and mentoring, assistance with time management and organization strategies, academic support services (e.g. the Writing Center, the Proctoring Center, ESL services, academic accommodations, etc.), study skills and college preparedness workshops, summer programming focused on high-school-to-college transitions and skill building (e.g. math, writing skills, etc.), and extensive web-based and other digital resources. A full listing of these services and resources is available on the CLC website (

CLC staff implement best practice strategies for providing academic support services to all students, including student populations with specific needs (e.g. learning disabilities, autism spectrum, ESL, ASL, and underprepared and/or academically at-risk students). CLC staff also serve as a resource for those seeking advice (students, advisors, faculty) on strategies to improve academic performance, and will assist students in developing individualized learning plans, strengthening executive functioning skills, and facilitating self-advocacy. Students are encouraged to contact the Assistant Dean and Director of the Centre Learning Commons to schedule a personal consultation.

The Center for Career & Professional Development

The Center for Career & Professional Development (CCPD) supports students’ holistic development by helping them connect the dots between the knowledge and skills they are gaining both inside and outside the classroom to potential careers, enhancing their career and professional development through programming and services, and providing them with the tools and knowledge necessary for post-graduate success.


Starting this fall, Centre is launching Career Exploration Communities (CECs). At the end of their first semester, students will have the opportunity to join one or more CEC: Arts, Media & Entertainment; Business & Entrepreneurship; Health & Medicine; Law, Government & Policy; Science, Engineering & Technology; and Social Impact. Events across campus will be offered through each CEC to help students learn more about potential careers and connect with industry professionals. In addition, each CEC will have a dedicated career coach, so that students can work with someone with specialized knowledge of their career field(s) of interest. There is also a career coach dedicated to meeting specifically with students who are undeclared or are undecided about their major or CEC choice. Career coaches can walk students through the entire career readiness process, from initial career exploration through applying for jobs or graduate schools. Along the way, career coaches can provide students with self-assessments, help them identify and articulate their skills, teach them how to research careers, help them locate and apply for internships or undergraduate research, assist with resume writing and interview preparation, and assist with locating and applying to post-graduate jobs and graduate schools. In addition, students will be able to connect and network with industry insiders through our Career Mentor Network and the networks of Career Advocates for each CEC.  Finally, the CCPD has a wealth of information and resources on its website, including Handshake, our personal internship and job posting site, and resources tailored to each CEC. 


Through intentional involvement with the CCPD, Centre graduates experience unparalleled success. On average, 97% of graduates are employed in professional positions or enrolled in graduate or professional school within one year of graduation.


Internships are essential in supporting successful careers after graduation. Aside from valuable real-world experience, internships allow students to try out careers, giving them the freedom to begin exploring their futures before graduation. An internship is a form of experiential learning that empowers students to integrate knowledge and theory learned throughout the curriculum with practical application and skills development in a professional setting. Centre offers internship opportunities to all students on a non-credit basis and during the sophomore, junior, and senior years on a credit basis.


An internship for academic credit can be completed during all academic terms as well as the summer and includes substantive academic work. The experience is guided by a member of the faculty and by a supervisor at the internship site with oversight by the CCPD. Students may earn two or three credits for their experiences based on hours worked. One-credit internships are also available in the summer. Students considering this type of internship must meet with their career coach to discuss their options and internship requirements. During the summer, a small fee is charged to complete an academic credit internship. Additionally, internship credit can be applied toward the Connections portion of general education requirements or fulfill elective credit. Academic advisors can provide individual guidance and planning for internships within the academic schedule. 


Non-credit internships exist for students who want to gain additional insights and experiences related to their potential career choice. This internship does not result in academic credit and is most often completed during the summer. The CCPD can assist in finding these experiences.


Both types of internships can be valuable components of a student’s career and professional development process, enabling them to make connections between the college experience and various career fields. Also, interested students may apply for funding (on a competitive basis) for internships taking place during the CentreTerm or the summer. Whether engaging in an internship for academic credit or not, all participating students should report their experience to the Center for Career & Professional Development. 

Preparation for Careers and Graduate and Professional Schools

Medicine and Other Health Professions

Medicine is the most popular health-career area at Centre, but our graduates also choose specialized study in fields such as dentistry, optometry, pharmacy, nursing, physical therapy, and veterinary medicine, among others. Biology, biochemistry and molecular biology, and chemistry are the most popular pre-med majors at Centre, but students from every academic major are accepted to medical school. Diversity is, in fact, not only possible, but encouraged by many medical schools, which have come to realize that students who pursue interests in art, music, philosophy, history, literature, and other areas of liberal study tend to become well-rounded, highly effective physicians. In fact, the only science background generally required for admission to medical school is two years of chemistry and one year each of biology and physics. However, the MCAT exam, required of all applicants to medical schools, does require a strong understanding of biology, physics, and chemistry, as well as some study of sociology, psychology, and statistics. Centre has established a Health Professions Advisory Group comprised of seven faculty members. Each faculty member is in charge of advising for a different health profession. Each advisor is available to students throughout their four years at Centre (and beyond) to help them plan their courses of study and to assist them in exploring the many health-related professions. They maintain close contact with the medical and other pre-health schools to which Centre students apply most frequently. Advisors play an active role in making sure that the schools to which our students have applied process their materials in a timely manner. This continuing level of personal attention and concern is an important element in the success of Centre graduates in gaining acceptance to medical and other pre-health schools. Another important resource that helps Centre students prepare for careers in medicine is the Pre-Health Society. This organization of students who are aiming toward careers in medicine and other health-related fields engages in a variety of activities. These include taking field trips to pre-health schools and bringing their representatives on campus to speak with interested students, inviting recent graduates back to campus to talk about their experiences in medical or other pre-health school and in practice, and arranging for local health professionals to meet and talk with students. Centre College has partnered with Ephraim McDowell Regional Medical Center to support an internship program that enables students to work regularly in the hospital’s different departments to become familiar with hospital procedures in general and the roles of different health care professionals.


Law schools are interested in students from every academic major, and a liberal arts education equips every student with the skills and aptitude necessary to succeed in law school. English, politics, history, international studies, and economics and finance are the majors most often selected by Centre students who pursue law, but there is no set pre-law major. Graduates across the many majors at Centre have a solid record of success in gaining admission to law schools and performing very ably once in law school. The broad-based skills that law schools emphasize—effective writing and speaking, analytical ability, and familiarity with the social sciences—are essential goals of Centre’s liberal arts curriculum.

At Centre, faculty pre-law advisors work with students from their first year on to help them explore law as a profession and to assist them in the application process during their junior and senior years. The pre-law advisors host a range of workshops throughout the academic year, with topics that include a broad overview of careers related to the law and LSAT studying strategies and resources. There is also an email list and a LSAT resources page that prelaw students can join. To help students get the most out of their Centre education, the prelaw advisors provide a list of recommended courses that aid in LSAT skill-building and general law school preparedness. Advisors also counsel interested students on related internship and volunteer opportunities that provide insight into the law field and help students identify and demonstrate their interest in pursuing a legal career.

In addition, the Centre for Career and Professional Development hosts several law-related events, including a law school fair and talks with legal professionals. Centre also has the John Marshall Harlan Law Society composed of students interested in law, many of whom go on to legal careers. This organization meets regularly, sponsors field trips to places such as courtrooms and law schools, and brings experts in the legal profession as well as representatives from law schools on campus to speak with students.


Students interested in pursuing a career in education can choose from a wide range of post-graduate options. Those who wish to earn a master's or teaching certification may choose to enroll at one of our partner universities (, the University of Louisville and the Peabody College of Education at Vanderbilt. Currently, our partnerships allow Centre students to count course hours from the education minor towards a master's degree in education. Students who complete an education minor are also well prepared to progress to any graduate school for teaching certification or to alternative programs such as Teach for America, Teach Kentucky, or teaching residency programs ( Students are encouraged to talk with education program faculty about how to match their goals with an appropriate graduate program or alternative track. In addition, while at Centre, students interested in education are encouraged to participate in an internship or research opportunity with a focus in the discipline.

Dual-Degree Engineering Studies Program

Centre offers a dual-degree engineering program in cooperation with the University of Kentucky and Washington University in St. Louis. This program leads to a bachelor of science degree from Centre and a bachelor of engineering degree from the partner institution. Students typically complete the combined studies in five years—three years at Centre and two years at the engineering school though it is also possible to spend four years at Centre before transferring. The program provides a background in the liberal arts and in engineering, which gives dual degree students communication and critical thinking skills that differentiate them from other engineers. Students complete the requirements for a Centre degree—including a major in biology, chemistry, computer science, environmental studies, mathematics, physics, or chemical physics—and the partner university requirements for an engineering degree to earn the dual undergraduate degrees. Additional information is available from the College’s dual-degree engineering studies advisor and the engineering website:

Reserve Officers Training Corps

Centre students may participate in the reserve officers training programs of the U.S. Army and U.S. Air Force through the University of Kentucky. Two-year and four-year Air Force ROTC programs are available. Most courses are offered on the University of Kentucky campus, and students are responsible for their own transportation.

Students receive academic credit toward their Centre degrees for the courses listed in this section. Winners of three-and four-year Army or Air Force ROTC scholarships receive, in addition to their support from the Army or Air Force, scholarships covering room and board for the period of the ROTC scholarship. Students may be eligible for additional scholarships or financial aid.

NOTE: U.S. Army ROTC is being phased out at Centre. At this time, only students contracted for the Army ROTC scholarship will be allowed to take the courses and complete the program.

Disability Services

Centre College is committed to fostering respect for the diversity of the College community and the individual rights of each member of that community. In this spirit, and in accordance with the provisions of Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and expanded by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), Centre College seeks to provide disabled students with the support services and other reasonable accommodations needed to ensure equal access to the programs and activities of the College. While the College provides a number of services to support the academic work of all its students, this statement outlines a variety of additional services provided specifically to students with mobility, visual, hearing, or learning disabilities.

Support services for students with disabilities at Centre College are coordinated by the Assistant Dean and Director of the Centre Learning Commons. This person counsels individual students to determine appropriate accommodations and identify resources, and is also available to consult with faculty and staff members.

All incoming students with special needs are invited to complete a confidential special-needs information form. The Assistant Dean then speaks with students who have identified their needs, and on the basis of the special-needs form and appropriate, current documentation, determines the appropriate services and completes the appropriate forms to notify faculty members of a student’s classroom needs. Arrangements for services, equipment, modification of course material, classroom, and other reasonable accommodations may require several weeks’ advance notice. Applicants requiring special services are encouraged to contact the Assistant Dean immediately upon acceptance to make timely provision of needed services possible.

Academic modifications vary according to individual need and preference, as well as course content and mode of teaching. Students are expected to discuss arrangements that might be necessary with their professors at the beginning of each term. The Centre Learning Commons is prepared to assist both students and faculty members in making such accommodations.

Special housing requests based on documented disabilities may be considered through the joint coordination of the Assistant Dean and Director of the Centre Learning Commons, the Director of Housing, and the Director of Parsons Health Services.