Trinity College’s curriculum prepares students for living and working in a globalizing world, leading socially meaningful and personally satisfying lives. The curriculum is premised fundamentally on close interaction between faculty and students, where collaborative learning in and out of the classroom thrives. In providing a 21st century liberal arts education, Trinity’s curriculum also draws on creative and critical pedagogies, experiential offerings, as well as technology and digital media to deepen student learning. Likewise, our urban location, unique international programs, and committed global network of alumni complement the expertise and dedication of Trinity’s faculty, providing students with a wealth of co-curricular resources and opportunities for engaged learning. The College’s curriculum equips students with the intellectual flexibility of a general education and the capacity to become innovative thinkers.
Fostering intellectual curiosity and core competencies, Trinity’s general education curriculum is designed to give each student the freedom to explore academic interests, discover passions, and acquire the breadth of knowledge integral to a liberal arts education.
Our general education curriculum has five key components:
A First-Year Seminar. All students take a first-year seminar or participate in a Gateway Program, introducing them to the intellectual life of the college and reinforcing essential academic practices, including the capacity to write compellingly and read critically, conduct research and analysis, and communicate effectively and collaboratively.
Foundational Skills. To ensure that all students have the basic tools needed for success in today’s world, students demonstrate writing proficiency, quantitative literacy, and competency in a second language.
Distributional Breadth. Since one of the hallmarks of a liberal arts education is breadth of knowledge, students take at least one course in each of these fields: the arts, humanities, natural sciences, numerical & symbolic reasoning, and social sciences.
Writing-Intensive Courses. In reinforcing writing and critical thinking skills throughout a student’s academic life, all students complete at least two writing-intensive courses, including the first-year seminar.
Global Engagement. To have the knowledge and skills to thrive in a diverse global context, all students complete a course with a “global” focus or participate in a study-abroad program.
Majors and Minors
Specialization in a given area is achieved through the majors and minors. We offer almost 40 majors and dozens of minors, both in traditional disciplines and interdisciplinary fields. Students are advised to choose majors that excite them, cultivate their personal strengths, and in which they are most likely to excel. In addition to acquiring depth in a particular field, majors and minors permit students to hone their writing, analytical, problem-solving or artistic skills; to develop close ties with a community of academic peers, and to enjoy intensive research and experiential learning opportunities. An integrating exercise, such as a seminar, thesis or final project, marks the capstone of a Trinity education.
The city of Hartford as well as our program sites abroad further extend the learning possibilities, offering an abundance of co-curricular opportunities, from robust internships and student research grants to community learning projects and other forms of experiential learning and applied knowledge—essential aspects of a modern liberal arts education. Students in the arts, humanities, social sciences, and STEM disciplines all benefit from these agile offerings. Trinity’s rich co-curricular experiences supplement in-class learning, reinforcing student skill sets and shaping academic and post-graduate trajectories.