Core Curriculum

Our Core Curriculum provides a shared learning experience that prepares you to thrive as part of the Iona community, as well as in a diverse, ever-changing world. All students at Iona complete the Core Curriculum as part of their degree in order to graduate.

The Core Curriculum allows you to choose courses in an array of departments in the School of Arts & Science, the LaPenta School of Business, and the Hynes Institute for Entrepreneurship & Innovation. It provides you with skills and knowledge that will distinguish you as a highly educated and ethical person when you enter the work world.

Core Curriculum Overview

All students are required to complete the 45 credits of the Core Curriculum.

  • Columba Cornerstone Seminar: 3 credits
  • English Composition: 3 credits
  • Humanities (Philosophy, Religious Studies, Literature, History, Fine and Performing Arts): 15 credits (3 credits in each area)
  • STEM (Math, Lab Science, Computer Science): 9 credits (3 credits in each area)
  • Economics, Political Science, Psychology, Sociology, Business, Entrepreneurship: 6 credits
  • Diversity, Cross-Cultural, & Global Perspectives: 6 credits (3 of which must be in Foreign Language)
  • Humanities Centerpiece Course* (English, History, Philosophy, Religious Studies, Foreign Language): 3 credits

*The Humanities Centerpiece Course is the focal class of your chosen Integrated Core Theme (ICT).

Full Requirements

In your first semester, you will take the three-credit theme-based freshman seminar Columba Cornerstone, which examines the many facets of human diversity, identity, and the connectedness of all human beings, and encourages you to consider new approaches to traditional problems. This course is linked to another core or introductory course in order to create a learning community for the cohort of students taking both courses.

You will choose your Columba Cornerstone according to the theme you wish to study: Truth and Equity, Justice and Equity, or Earth and Equity.

In addition to the classroom component, each Cornerstone integrates co-curricular activities such as attending a performance by the Iona College Theatre Program, going on a Midnight Run service experience with Mission and Ministry, or attending an E-Talk with the Hynes Institute. You are required to engage in a minimum of two co-curricular activities guided by your professor.

All sections of the Columba Cornerstone, regardless of theme incorporate instruction on six topics which have been designed to ground you in essential learning that supports the entirety of your Iona experience. These topics include: The Iona Story; Diversity; Information and Digital Literacy; Critical Thinking; Entrepreneurship and Innovation; and basic Financial Literacy.

Columba Cornerstone

All students will choose an Integrated Core Theme (ICT) as part of their Core Curriculum requirements. An ICT is a set of four courses based on an interdisciplinary topic. The ICT consists of a Humanities Centerpiece course and three integrated courses. The three integrated courses are not additional courses in the core, but rather existing core courses, major, minor, or elective courses.

Themes offered include:

  • Violence
  • Society and the Scientific Mind
  • Innovation and the Creative Mind
  • Sustainability and the Green Mind
  • Identity: Persons, Societies, and Culture
  • Revolutions: Real, Imagined, and Digital
  • Women: Sex, Gender, and Society

Integrated Core Themes

more about Core Curriculum


Elena Procario-Foley

Elena G. Procario-Foley, Ph.D.

Director, Core Curriculum

Br. John G. Driscoll Professor of Jewish-Catholic Studies

Professor of Religious Studies