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Learning Aims

The academic road you traverse at Loyola is a rigorous one. You’ll put in more hours than you can count studying, discovering, contemplating, creating, conversing, reading, writing (and rewriting). But you’ll see all that hard work pay off when you realize how adept you’ve become comprehending and reflecting on difficult texts, how much easier new concepts are to grasp, how proud you are of the papers you’ve written and the presentations you’ve given. You’ll exercise your mind until its strength surprises even you.  
The more you immerse yourself in the curriculum, connect with your peers and professors, and dare to be tested, the stronger your academic and intellectual foundations will become. You will develop an intellect that will distinguish and define you—at Loyola and beyond. 

Intellectual Excellence

  • Appreciation of and passion for intellectual endeavor and the life of the mind
  • Appreciation of and grounding in the liberal arts and sciences
  • Excellence in a discipline, including understanding of the relationship between one’s discipline and other disciplines; understanding the interconnectedness of all knowledge
  • Habits of intellectual curiosity, honesty, humility, and persistence

Critical Understanding: Thinking, Reading, and Analyzing

  • The ability to evaluate a claim based on documentation, plausibility, and logical coherence
  • The ability to analyze and solve problems using appropriate tools
  • The ability to make sound judgments in complex and changing environments
  • Freedom from narrow, solipsistic, or parochial thinking
  • The ability to use mathematical concepts and procedures competently, and to evaluate claims made in numeric terms
  • The ability to find and assess data about a given topic using general repositories of information, both printed and electronic
  • The ability to use information technology in research and problem solving, with an appreciation of its advantages and limitations

Eloquentia Perfecta

  • The ability to use speech and writing effectively, logically, gracefully, persuasively, and responsibly
  • Critical understanding of and competence in a broad range of communications media
  • Competence in a language other than one’s own


  • An appreciation of beauty, both natural and man-made
  • A cultivated response to the arts, and the ability to express oneself about aesthetic experience


  • An understanding of one’s strengths and capabilities as a leader and the responsibility one has to use leadership strengths for the common good
  • A willingness to act as an agent for positive change, informed by a sense of responsibility to the larger community

Faith and Mission

  • An understanding of the mission of the Catholic university as an institution dedicated to exploring the intersection of faith and reason, and experience and competence in exploring that intersection
  • An understanding of the mission of the Society of Jesus and of the religious sisters of Mercy, especially of what it means to teach, learn, lead, and serve "for the greater glory of God”
  • A habit of thoughtful, prayerful, and responsible discernment of the voice of God in daily life; a mature faith
  • Habits of reflection in solitude and in community
  • A commitment to put faith into action

Promotion of Justice

  • An appreciation of the great moral issues of our time: the sanctity of human life, poverty, racism, genocide, war and peace, religious tolerance and intolerance, the defense of human rights, and the environmental impact of human activity
  • Commitment to promote justice for all, based on a respect for the dignity and sanctity of human life
  • Commitment to and solidarity with persons who are materially poor or otherwise disadvantaged


  • Recognition of the inherent value and dignity of each person, and therefore an awareness of, sensitivity toward, and respect for the differences of race, gender, ethnicity, national origin, culture, sexual orientation, religion, age, and disabilities
  • Awareness of the structural sources, consequences, and responsibilities of privilege
  • Awareness of the global context of citizenship and an informed sensitivity to the experiences of peoples outside of the United States
  • Awareness of the multiplicity of perspectives that bear on the human experience, and the importance of historical, global, and cultural context in determining the way we see the world


  • Attentiveness to development of the whole person—mind, body, and spirit
  • Ability to balance and integrate care for self and care for others
  • Understanding the importance of productive and responsible use of leisure time
  • Freedom from addictive behaviors

These undergraduate learning aims were adopted by the Academic Senate on April 8, 2003.