Core Curriculum

Our core curriculum, the Simmons PLAN (Purpose Leadership ActioN) will prepare you for 21st century career success. It will help you find your purpose, practice leadership, and put your knowledge and skills into action.

General education, customized for you

PLAN provides a framework for you to develop your own understanding and practice of leadership, learn across disciplines, engage with the city of Boston and personalize key components of your academic experience.

All students have a common set of core experiences and themes, and receive guidance and support from faculty, but ultimately you will design your own academic experience.

You'll work closely with your advisor to choose courses that fit the university's requirements — and that also inspire and challenge you.

First Year

Immersion in university-level work

  • The Boston Course: develops your writing skills and engages you in the city of Boston
  • The Leadership Course: challenges you to think about yourself as a leader
  • The Simmons Course: Explore: supports you in your transition to college

Second Year

  • The Learning Community: understand a topic from multiple disciplinary perspectives
  • The Simmons Course: Experience: focuses on continued development of self-management skills, academic and career planning and the importance of directed goal-setting

Junior and Senior Years

Focus on chosen discipline and post-grad preparation

  • 3D: Design Across Diverse Disciplines: create, design and propose a cluster of three courses that will address a topic, problem or issue from various disciplinary perspectives
  • The Simmons Course: Excel (Junior Year): focuses on career and life planning; internships, research, and service; employment and graduate school; and financial independence and planning
  • Capstone Experience: addresses mastery in your major

Key Content Areas

The key content areas are broad. Each represents a way of thinking about the world and approaching complex topics. Mastering each one will help you develop fully as an independent thinker, prepared not just to understand the world's problems, but to help solve them. 

Students will take one course in each of the following Key Content Areas:

  • Aesthetic Literary Artistic (ALA)
  • Scientific (SCI) 
  • Global Cultural (GC)
  • Social Historical (SH)

In addition to Key Content Areas, students will take one Quantitative Literacy (QL) course and two semesters of the same language. For more information, check out Smart Catalog and the full list of KCA and Quantitative Literacy Options.

Students in class

Essential Capabilities

PLAN is designed to help you gain the tools you'll need to succeed in your career and in life. Work on these essential capabilities is built into every course you'll take during your time at Simmons.

Essential capabilities
Student writing on a whiteboard


Check out requirements for our core curriculum and the resources available through Undergraduate Advising.

Undergraduate Advising