DePaul University College of LAS > About

Mission and Vision

The mission of the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences is congruent with DePaul University's mission in the sense that it reflects a "commitment to those values and intellectual traditions that constitute the best of our Catholic and Vincentian heritage; to placing the highest priority on teaching and learning while supporting multiple forms of scholarly and creative activity; to providing an education that is accessible to the economically disadvantaged, to first generation college students, and to the diverse cultural and ethnic groups in the metropolitan area; to encouraging faculty, staff, and students to use their talents and expertise to contribute positively to the broader society; to fostering lifelong learning and critical thinking; and to guaranteeing academic freedom as an essential condition of effective inquiry and instruction." Within this context, the College of Liberal Arts and Social Science's distinctive mission includes the following:

Tradition and innovation across undergraduate and graduate curricula

The college is DePaul's central source for scholarship and teaching in the fundamental methods, disciplines and fields of the humanities, interdisciplinary studies and the behavioral and social sciences, providing students with a solid grounding in and exposure to these crucial, time-honored pursuits. Equally importantly, the college is committed to innovation and creativity, both within traditional fields and in ways that may entail a crossing and blurring of disciplinary boundaries, as scholars and students engage an array of emerging cultural, social and global realities unimaginable even a generation ago.

Leadership in general education

The college, in collaboration with colleagues across the university, takes the lead in envisioning, developing, delivering, assessing and re-imagining the university's general education program, which pursues the enduring questions of what it means to be an educated person and what every DePaul graduate should know and be able to do. We affirm our continuing commitment to fostering in all students a disposition to self-reflectiveness, a habit of critical and creative thinking, a vital sense of values, and an informed view of the plurality of our multicultural world.

Critical reflection on the purpose of knowledge

Education for what? We ask this in the context of our abiding affirmation of the dignity of every person, our fundamental trust in the possibility of improving life in our urban context and beyond, and our openness to the mystery that lures us, all and together, into deeper and more complex investigations, working toward genuine insights, toward a wisdom we cannot fully name, and toward a justice and compassion we can only imagine but believe essential to ourselves and our societies.

A pluralistic context for teaching, learning and scholarship

Since knowledge is partial, inquiry must be ongoing, informed by the consideration of multiple perspectives. Thus we are committed to creating a pluralistic context for teaching, learning and scholarship in terms of what and how we study, and who we bring together to study it. To this end, from institutional policies to curricular design to our everyday treatment of students, staff and faculty, we strive to unmask and resist discrimination toward any person because of race, religion, sexual orientation, gender, ethnicity, economic status, physical ability, educational background, or belief. We aspire to value the integrity of one another and to learn from each other as we create a diverse educational community.