Great Books Minor

Practice the liberal arts of listening, speaking, reading and writing as well as the habits of reflective, critical thinking

The Great Books minor provides Quincy University students from any major the opportunity to consult the great intellectual works of our human heritage about the core dilemmas that confront our species. Great Books classes employ close readings of classic texts and in-depth class discussions of the themes therein. Through this program, students build cultural literacy while strengthening their reading, writing, thinking, and speaking skills.

“Some books leave us free and some books make us free.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson


Students will learn the meaning of, purpose of, and habits required for liberal education, and practice the close reading of a Great Book and the seminar-style discussion of that text and its themes.

Learning Objectives

  • Compare, contrast, and synthesize arguments from thinkers across the Great Books.
  • Write a scholarly-article length research paper.
  • Apply the analyses and lessons of the Great Books to contemporary issues.
  • Build rhetorical and critical thinking skills by responding to and posing Socratic questioning.
  • Build cultural literacy.
  • Articulate the meaning of liberal education and the place of the Great Books therein
  • Evaluate the relevance of the Great Books to their academic major.


Setting the Bar

The skills I learned [at Quincy University] helped me in my current job and they helped me when I was in law school.
Mallory Littlejohn '08, Lawyer

A few of your career options

Our Great Books minor enhances the preparation of students who are pursuing careers in:

  • Education
  • Journalism
  • Political leadership
  • Health Services
  • Advertising and Public Relations


Fun Fact: Vice President for Mission and Ministry, Fr. John Doctor has made 14 pilgrimages to Assisi, Italy!