Academic Mission

The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences exists to provide an atmosphere of responsible learning to a varied group of students who are called to intellectual, moral, and professional leadership. To fulfill these goals, the College seeks to promote intellectual curiosity and rigor within the university; to instill the fundamentals of critical insight, mature judgment, and independent thinking; and to awaken in its students a sense of the importance of values and the moral responsibility of caring for others and working for the betterment of society.

Villanova has always openly and proudly declared that it is a Catholic institution of higher learning. The University maintains a strong respect for the beliefs of its diverse community of faculty, students, and staff. In keeping with its central place in a Catholic university, the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences has a special commitment to the Christian belief that creation is an expression of the divine truth through the redemptive life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, the incarnate Word of God. It also seeks to provide a Christian intellectual and moral environment, and believes that it is the common right of all to participate in creation, to seek truth, and to apply such truth attained to protect and enrich personal and communal life.

Villanova’s special Augustinian heritage enables the College to draw upon the dynamic legacy of St. Augustine, whose passionate pursuit of wisdom, understood through the metaphor of one heart and one mind, inspires its own quest for knowledge in open, intelligent, responsible, and mutually respectful interaction of points of view. This legacy is classically illustrated by the Augustinian Order’s impact on the medieval universities, its distinguished cultivation of Renaissance art, and its fostering of the scientific discoveries of Gregor Mendel. It is further expressed in the conviction that all authentic human wisdom is ultimately in harmony with Divine Wisdom, and it invites collaboration with other Christians and peoples of other traditions who might share at least the general features and dynamics of this Augustinian vision.

In light of this legacy, the College has developed a diversified academic program and a core curriculum that provide students with a scale of well-defined universal values that equips them to be wise critics of the society in which they live, and which sustains a moral base and social consciousness that transcends economic barriers and questions of race, gender, and creed.