The Course

The Moreau First Year Experience is a required component of the University of Notre Dame's Core Curriculum. The course fosters your personal development by asking central human questions and discussing important contemporary topics that lead to having meaningful conversations that matter. Through these conversations, the course inspires you to cultivate, in the words of the Notre Dame Mission Statement, the “disciplined habits of mind, body, and spirit that are characteristic of educated, skilled, and free human beings.” The vision is grounded on the belief that all human beings are created in God’s image and likeness, and therefore affirms the dignity and respect for all peoples regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, ability or other forms of difference. 

Guided by the Spirit of Inclusion at Notre Dame, the course promotes diversity, equity and inclusion as integral elements of Notre Dame’s education in such a way it creates “a sense of human solidarity and concern for the common good that will bear fruit as learning becomes service to justice” (Notre Dame Mission Statement).

Animated by Notre Dame’s vision of Catholic education, the course believes that personal development is pursued in the context of community in which diverse perspectives, experiences, and backgrounds converge to heal, unify, enlighten, and transform the world. Through the gifts of each person, you are invited to engage with practices of defining, discerning, and developing a vision of a life well-lived.

Course Learning Objectives

The two-semester course sequence challenges you to individually encounter and respond to the invitation of personal development. In the fall, the FYS 10101 course challenges you to respond meaningfully to this invitation by meeting the following objectives:

1) deepen your self-knowledge

2) define your beliefs and values

In the spring, the FYS 10102 course equips you to apply a deepened level of self-knowledge to meet the following objectives: 

3) discern possible ways of living life 

4) develop and pursue a vision of a life well-lived.

Course Format

The course is a collaborative endeavor shared between the Center for University Advising, the Division of Student Affairs, and first-year students.

Critical, Independent Thinking

The Moreau First Year Experience course utilizes a flipped-classroom model to prioritize in-class discussion. Each week, prior to class meetings, you are required to thoughtfully and critically reflect on pertinent content materials (text, video, audio, etc.) These materials are common to all sections and seek to offer context and perspectives on the weekly focus question. These weekly focus questions are relevant to the national discourse on higher education, justice, equity, human flourishing and virtuous living. The content materials seek to offer diverse and sometimes controversial perspectives and research.

Moreau FYE Small Group Discussion

Discussion as a Way of Active, Integrative, and Student-Centered Learning

Class discussions, facilitated by Moreau Instructors, are designed to enable you to collaboratively engage with the materials, voice concerns and questions, witness diverse perspectives, and integrate the topics, questions, and learning objectives of the course with your broader education experience and ongoing personal development. This integration, in which you individually and communally connect the course with your developing and personal articulation of a life well-lived is the basis of the course’s use of discussion as a way of active, integrative, and student-centered learning.