• <a href="/live/image/gid/648/width/650/86679_DIV-A2-0313-0055.jpg" class="lw_preview_image lw_disable_preview" tabindex="-1"><picture class="lw_image lw_image86679"> <source type="image/webp" srcset="/live/image/gid/648/width/720/height/690/crop/1/86679_DIV-A2-0313-0055.rev.1610666790.webp 1x"/> <source type="image/jpeg" srcset="/live/image/gid/648/width/720/height/690/crop/1/86679_DIV-A2-0313-0055.rev.1610666790.jpg 1x"/> <img src="/live/image/gid/648/width/720/height/690/crop/1/86679_DIV-A2-0313-0055.rev.1610666790.jpg" alt="Our small classes (19?25 students) are designed to help you develop the reading, writing, discuss..." width="720" height="690" data-max-w="592" data-max-h="635" loading="lazy"/> </picture> </a><div class="hero-split_image_caption collapsable-caption"> Our small classes (19–25 students) are designed to help you develop the reading, writing, discussion, and analytical skills you will need to succeed in college and for life.</div>

Explore, Learn, Engage

Our general education program is designed to spark your curiosity, encourage you to take intellectual chances, and push you to participate thoughtfully and passionately in a diverse and interdependent world.

We give you the framework on which you build a general education curriculum that allows you to explore your interests and the relationships among them. This DIY approach allows you to choose from classes that professors have created around their academic passions, and which are designed to inspire academic passion in you.

Your general education courses—which account for approximately one-third of your total coursework—can be both a pathway to discovering your major and a complement to the specialized classes you will take within your major.

“Our new General Education curriculum does a lot of things: above all, it shows how we practice the liberal arts at Lewis & Clark. Based on a vision of the skills and experiences we want every Lewis & Clark graduate to have, the curriculum trains every student in the modes of critical inquiry; invites them to explore the challenges and promises of community life in a diverse and complicated world; and invites them to reflect deeply on the role they can play in the world. It connects with every major and minor and allows them to explore questions and methods beyond their chosen majors and minors.” — Kundai Chirindo

First-Year Seminars: Words and Numbers

In your first year, you’ll take one faculty-led foundational seminar per semester. These small classes (19–25 students) are designed to help you develop the reading, writing, discussion, and analytical skills you will need to succeed in college and for life. One of your two courses will focus on interpreting the meaning and significance of texts (CORE 120: Words), the other on interpreting quantitative information and models (CORE 121: Numbers). These are not simply writing and math classes; rather, these courses allow you to explore a specialized topic of particular interest with a faculty member and a small group of students. These topics might include:

    • Queenship
    • Radical Performance in Portland
    • Space Travel
    • Data Journalism
    • Zombie Apocalypse by the Numbers
    • Color
    • Space, Time, Spacetime
    • Experience of Music
    • First Contact: We Are Not Alone
    • Food Production and Food Waste

No one can explain the Lewis & Clark experience better than our current students and recent alumni. Read about L&C in their words.

  • I take on more responsibility because of the independence we have at Lewis & Clark, and I have grown into a more authentic self.

    Tobias Varntoft BA ’21
    Terslev, Denmark
    More about Tobias
  • Since I didn’t have the opportunity to visit campus before arriving for orientation, I had to base my decision on the website and some conversations with current students. One of the things that really stuck with me was how welcoming the community seemed.

    Hannah Meggitt-Nxumalo BA ’20
    Mbabane, eSwatini
    More about Hannah
  • My favorite thing about living in Portland is that it is such an active city. There are local events going on all the time, and everyone is outdoors enjoying the beautiful Northwest.

    Ben Beecroft
    Hong Kong and San Francisco, California
    More about Ben

Outside the Classroom

Lectures, free tutoring, office hours, symposia and more … Lewis & Clark is alive with ways to support your growth as a scholar outside of the classroom, some of which are directly tied to the general education curriculum. For instance Colloquia connected to the first year seminars will be offered twice per semester. Experts from our faculty and community leaders engage with students on a topic of pressing concern, such as democracy, ecology, income inequality, and the housing crisis. Pioneer Success Institute: a six-week series of workshops for first-year students designed to build a network of friends, colleagues, and staff members who will help you succeed in and out of the classroom. Festival of Scholars: an opportunity for students to present their own research and art. On this day each spring, everyone in the community participates in festival events such as performances of original compositions, exhibition of original art, plays, and research presentations.