Gordon College conceives of education as encompassing the total college experience. This includes both the formal academic program and informal learning within the context of an academic community. Co-curricular activities supplement and reinforce the formal curriculum and therefore are important in the total development and education of the student.
The two foundational parts of the formal academic program of the College are the Core Curriculum and the departmental majors. All students are required to complete the Core Curriculum and at least one major course of study. Students may also elect to minor in one or more disciplines. Significant aspects of the academic program include the first-year seminar, The Great Conversation; writing across the curriculum; an emphasis on developing oral communication skills within the majors; and many off-campus academic programs for students.
Undergraduate Majors, Minors, Concentrations
Students must elect one of the following major courses of study: accounting; art; biblical studies; biochemistry; biology (bachelor of arts); biology (bachelor of science); business administration; Christian ministries; communication arts; computer science (bachelor of arts); computer science (bachelor of science); early childhood education; economics; elementary education; English; finance; history; international affairs; kinesiology; linguistics; mathematics; music; music education; music performance; philosophy; physical and applied sciences: physics; physics (bachelor of arts 3-2 engineering program); political science; psychology (bachelor of arts); psychology (bachelor of science); social welfare; or theatre arts. Students complete core and major requirements of the catalog in effect during the year in which a student enters but have the option to select one other catalog in effect during attendance. See Majors under Academic Policies. A minimum of 20 semester hours must be taken through Gordon for each major. Note: Some majors have entrance requirements and/or minimum standards to continue in the major. See admissions and departmental information.
Double/Triple Majors. Students wishing to earn two or more majors should consult with the departments involved to determine specific requirements. All core requirements for each major must be completed as well as all departmental requirements of each major. Remaining credits may also be fulfilled by electives. The degree earned will be based on the first major. If a student wants to complete a second, different degree, all the current requirements of the appropriate core and the major for the second degree must be completed with a minimum of an additional 32 credits taken in residence at Gordon after completion of all the requirements of the first degree.
Departmental Concentration. A departmental concentration is a prescribed group of courses related to a specific topic within a student’s major. Requirements for the concentrations are listed under the appropriate departments and majors.
Students may select one or more departmental or interdepartmental minors.
Departmental Minor. A prescribed or individually tailored group of related courses (a minimum of 20 credits) taken outside of one’s major discipline. Courses are taken from one department’s offerings or major requirements and approved by the Registrar’s Office and the department in which it is offered. Prescribed departmental minors are described under the appropriate department. Minors provide an opportunity to study outside the major without requiring the heavy commitment of a second major. Students may tailor a minor with approval of the chair of the department offering the minor.
Interdepartmental Minor. Gordon also offers interdisciplinary and preprofessional studies minors. Each requires a prescribed group of at least 20 credits of related courses taken from more than one department. Each interdisciplinary minor is supervised by a faculty committee, which must approve any deviation from the required courses. See Interdisciplinary and Off-Campus Curricula. Minor forms are available online and should be submitted to the Registrar’s Office with appropriate signatures. Interdisciplinary minors include: classical studies, environmental studies, gender studies, health professions, Innovation and Social Enterprise, Latin American studies, neuroscience, peace and conflict studies, prelaw, public history and museum studies, speech pathology, and sustainable development.
Gordon College offers innovative options for students in transition through the Gordon Plus program. Junior or senior Gordon students planning to complete their undergraduate degree requirements early can enroll in Gordon Plus to begin graduate coursework alongside undergraduate coursework, saving time and money for the student. This is available for the Master’s of Education and Master’s of Financial Analysis graduate programs.
In order to be considered eligible for Gordon Plus, students must have junior or senior standing, be enrolled as a full-time student with a minimum of 12 credits, and maintain a minimum 3.2 GPA. With Gordon Plus, students have the ability to take up to four graduate courses while maintaining existing Gordon institutional aid and receive automatic admission into Gordon graduate programs after completing their undergraduate degree.
Students are assigned faculty advisors to help develop their academic programs, plan for graduate study and give personal guidance during college. The relationship between students and faculty is stressed in all aspects of Gordon’s program. Faculty advisors can be a valuable resource in helping students to adjust to the demands of college and work through academic and career decisions.
Academic Success Center (ASC)
General Support. The Academic Success Center, located on the fourth floor of the Jenks Library, is open during the academic year as an academic resource for Gordon students. The Center provides a Writing Center with trained tutors; weekly small-group review sessions with a peer tutor for large core courses; individual tutors to help with study skills, math, foreign language, English language learners and other subject areas as needed; special academic advising; and time management assistance. Study skills workshops are offered periodically during the year and are available to all students. Students are encouraged to develop self-awareness as learners and to investigate new strategies and techniques for effective performance. Professional staff are available for concerns that affect a student’s general academic progress and for concerns relating to disabilities. For more information, please see the ASC website at http://www.gordon.edu/asc.
Disabilities Support. Gordon College is committed to providing equivalent access to its educational programs, activities and services for students with disabilities. Academic accommodations are arranged through the Academic Success Center (ASC) for students who qualify for such services. The Academic Success Center works interactively with students and faculty to coordinate accommodation needs. Students with documented disabilities who intend to request services should send current documentation clearly supporting academic accommodations to Ann Seavey, director of the Academic Success Center. For specific information about documentation guidelines or procedures for obtaining accommodations, please see the ASC website at http://www.gordon.edu/academicaccessibility or send an email to [email protected]. A statement of Gordon’s disability policy can be found in Appendix C: Statement of Provision for Students with Disabilities of this catalog.
Center for Faith and Inquiry
The Center for Faith and Inquiry (CFI) is dedicated to promoting first-order scholarship, reflection, creativity and conversation, drawing from Christian intellectual and spiritual traditions, the various academic disciplines and the wisdom found in societies and cultures at large. The insights and ideas derived from its work aim to serve Gordon College, the Body of Christ and the common good.
CFI maintains three principal programs: the Faith Seeking Understanding lecture series, the Jerusalem and Athens Forum honors program and Respectful Conversations. The various activities of these programs include debates, conferences, lectures, panel discussions, small-group discussions, promoting faculty scholarship and more. The Center is located on the campus of Gordon College. See www.gordon.edu/cfi.
The Gallery at the Barrington Center for the Arts
The Department of Art operates a professional-level art gallery featuring contemporary art by local and national artists in all media: painting, sculpture, printmaking, photography, design, and new media. The gallery program is integral to our teaching and reflects a commitment by the faculty to model high standards for our students. Student senior-thesis exhibits reach for this same level of excellence and are often the highlight of the exhibition year.
Named for James and Evelyn Jenks, generous supporters of Gordon College, Jenks Library is the campus gateway to information resources and services. It houses nearly 200,000 items, including books, 280 journals in hard copy, DVDs, videos, CDs, music scores, rare books and curriculum materials. In addition, the library provides access to over 80 online databases, over 60,000 online journal titles, and 70,000 e-books. These resources, combined with a strong service program, make it an essential part of teaching and learning at Gordon College.
The library’s website at www.gordon.edu/library is the starting point for library research at Gordon. The online catalog, electronic resources, course reserves and interlibrary loan services are all available on the library’s website.
Jenks Library is a member of NOBLE (North of Boston Library Exchange) and the Massachusetts Library System (MLS). These and other partnerships provide the Gordon community with access to a wide array of library information resources. Jenks Library is also a selective depository for U.S. government documents.
The library is open over 100 hours a week, and librarians are available seven days a week to assist students in the use of library resources and in the development of strong analytical and information-seeking skills. Each year the library purchases new materials that support the Gordon College curriculum. In addition to information resources and services, the library provides space for quiet study as well as group-study rooms for collaborative learning.
The Cooperative Education Program provides interaction between formal education and off-campus experiential learning through employment. The goal is to enable students to test theory in real-life settings, to learn more about themselves and the world of work, and to facilitate the “learning/work” transition from college to career.
Part-time and full-time co-op experiences enable students to fulfill educationally related work responsibilities for pay. Co-op placements vary in length from three to 12 months; a semester and/or summer co-op is typical. It is possible for a student to have more than one co-op placement, either at the same workplace or at different ones.
Interested students should contact the Career and Connection Institute Office at least one semester in advance. Information sessions and other related events are posted in Handshake. The director and associate director work with students to locate co-op placements and monitor progress during placements. Applicants must be in satisfactory academic standing with a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0. However, some employers may require a higher cumulative GPA.
Prior to the learning/work experience, faculty advisors assist students in developing co-op learning plans and discuss approaches for maximizing the experience. Faculty advisors monitor the learning plan/goals at midterm site visits.
At the completion of each co-op experience, students complete self-evaluations, assessing the extent to which learning plans were fulfilled. Employers also complete evaluations of students’ progress in the co-op learning/work experience. Co-op experiences are recorded on students’ transcripts, although no academic credit is awarded.
Internships at Gordon College are academic experiences intended to allow students to make practical connections between their fields of study and the world of work. As such, they should be seen as important and useful transition experiences for students and should carry the full weight of and respect for academic rigor found in any other academic experience in the majors. Internships are defined as being limited to a maximum of 8 credit hours in a student’s undergraduate program of study, with a minimum expectation of 28 on-the-job hours for each academic credit hour earned. A student who meets the minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 may apply for an internship. The internship must be prearranged and approved by a faculty advisor and the registrar prior to the student’s beginning the internship and must be done with a professional practicing in the field; requires a minimum of one personal visit by the supervising faculty and will be graded following the same guidelines as for other academic experiences. The deadline to enroll in an internship is the same as other registration deadlines (fifth day of a semester or June 1 for summer). Tuition for internship credit is the same as for any other academic credit. Internships may not be repeated; subsequent internships must be thoroughly different experiences and with totally different organizations.
Students desiring an internship must develop a learning plan in advance with the supervising faculty member; set specific goals; identify the appropriate content, length and expectations for written requirements or appropriate projects; and indicate criteria, deadlines and procedures for evaluation and grading. One site visit is required during the work experience. A student may enroll on campus for other coursework while participating in an internship. Contact the Registrar’s Office.
Please see the Global and Experiential Learning Office website for additional information: www.gordon.edu/geo.
The following programs are owned and operated by Gordon College. Application for the programs is found online at www.gordon.edu/geo.
Gordon in Orvieto. Students in this arts-oriented semester program in central Italy find new, creative inspiration in the artistic traditions of the past while experiencing rhythms of life slower and simpler than the forms of contemporary American life by dining together, enjoying sustained conversation, and living more closely to the earth in the midst of vineyards and olive groves. Its workshop environment draws teachers and students into close collaborative learning. All students take an introductory course that uses drawing to introduce the themes of the entire program. Students then select three among a set of courses offered in the visual arts and humanities. Students with no background in the Italian language take a 2-credit tutorial-based course in Italian Language Studies. Courses occur in a month-long intensive format, typically with three-hour class sessions from Monday through Thursday mornings. The three-day weekends are available for personal travel and course-related excursions. Contact the Global and Experiential Learning Office.
International Seminars. These are two- to four-week intensive summer- or winter-break seminar and field experiences focusing on specific topics and geographical regions. Past topics include British Stage (United Kingdom); Economic Development in Modern China; History of Ancient and Modern Greek Culture and Christianity in the Aegean World (Greece); Physical Settings of the Bible (Israel); and Social Change and Development in South Africa. Contact the Global and Experiential Learning Office.
La Vida College Expeditions. The La Vida College Expeditions program is a 12-day wilderness experience and fulfills the First-year Experience and outdoor education requirement. Students meet at Gordon College and are transported to the La Vida Base Camp in Lake Clear, NY, to get outfitted for their expedition. The program includes travel via backpacking or canoeing through Adirondack State Park and activities such as the challenge course, rock climbing, group problem solving, a solo experience, group discussions and Bible studies. Leadership, self-discovery, experiential learning, stewardship and character formation are promoted. In the context of a supportive Christian community, students are given the opportunity to explore their physical, mental and spiritual potential. These expeditions are appropriate for anyone who has passed a school physical or a physical conducted by your primary physician. Most students come with no prior camping, canoeing or backpacking experience. La Vida Expeditions are offered five times between May and August. Incoming students register through the La Vida Office once they have deposited at Gordon for the June, July or August La Vida Expeditions. Current students register in November for the May expedition. Through an academic petition, a limited number of current students may also register for August La Vida. Visit http://www.gordon.edu/lavida/college for more details on dates and cost.
The Compass program also meets the requirements for this section of the Core Curriculum. Minimal paperwork is needed to receive credit and can be obtained by contacting [email protected].
Best Semester (Programs of the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities)
The following programs are operated by the CCCU, with 16 credits per semester given by Gordon College. Students may apply through Gordon, online at www.gordon.edu/geo. See Off-Campus Programs.
Australia Studies Centre. An approved program option for Gordon’s business majors. Located in Brisbane, Queensland on Australia’s Gold Coast, this program is designed to integrate firsthand observation and study of Australian culture, history, religion, politics and Indigenous cultures together with experiential service learning and formal instruction. The program partners with Christian Heritage College to provide a diverse array of discipline-specific courses. Students live in home-stays with an Australian family. See Off-Campus Programs . Contact the Global and Experiential Learning Office.
American Studies Program. This is an interdisciplinary internship/seminar program based in Washington, D.C. Designed to expose undergraduates to opportunities for involvement in public life, the program also provides students with a general understanding of the public policy dynamics at work in the nation’s capital. The program provides internship opportunities for the diverse majors and career interests of college juniors and seniors. The Strategic Communications track provides Communication Arts majors with a key opportunity to put their disciplinary skills to use and explore career opportunities on the Hill. Students live together in campus apartments, work as voluntary interns and participate in a seminar program for which they receive full academic credit. Since the number of participants is limited, the program is highly selective. See Off-Campus Programs . Contact the Global and Experiential Learning Office.
Contemporary Music Center. This interdisciplinary program is based in Nashville, Tennessee. CMC provides a community for young musicians and aspiring music executives to plumb the depths of their creative souls and test the waters of a career in popular music. Designed as an artists’ community, the program seeks to develop artists and music executives with a Christ-centered vision for music content, production and delivery. The mission of the CMC is to prepare students academically and creatively for potential careers in the music industry. In addition to the required core courses, each student will choose either the Artist Track, the Executive Track or the Technical Track. See Off-Campus Course Programs . Contact the Global and Experiential Learning Office.
Latin American Studies Program. Located in San Jose, Costa Rica, this semester program gives students the opportunity to study the language, literature, culture, politics, history, economics, ecology and religion of the region while living with a Costa Rican family. Students also participate in a service opportunity and travel for three weeks to surrounding countries. Three specialized academic tracks are available: Latin American Studies, International Business Concentration, and Advanced Language and Literature. See Off-Campus Programs . Contact the Global and Experiential Learning Office.
Los Angeles Film Studies Center. This is an interdisciplinary internship/seminar program located in one of the primary film and television production centers in Los Angeles, the Los Angeles Film Studies Center (LAFSC), and is designed to integrate a Christian worldview with an introductory exploration of the work and workings of mainstream Hollywood entertainment. See Off-Campus Programs . Contact the Global and Experiential Learning Office.
Middle East Studies Program. Located in Amman, Jordan, this semester program provides students with the opportunity to study Middle Eastern cultures, history, religions, politics and language from within this diverse and strategic region. Students participate in interdisciplinary seminar classes, receive Arabic language instruction and serve as volunteers with various organizations. Travel component may include Egypt, Palestine, Jordan, Turkey, Morocco, or Tunisia. See Off-Campus Programs . Contact the Global and Experiential Learning Office.
Scholars’ Semester in Oxford (one or two semesters). Located in Oxford, England, the program develops the academic writing and research skills of students who want and are prepared to study intensively. Enables students to explore the disciplines and their interests to a high standard. Students enroll in a primary and secondary tutorial (equivalent to upper-division courses), an integrative seminar (first term), the British Landscape course (both terms) and a thesis (second term). Students group their work in a concentration so that all elements of the program work together. Designed for students interested in fields of art history, classics, English language and literature, history, musicology, philosophy, psychology, theology and religious studies. Applicants must have a 3.7 or better GPA. See Off-Campus Programs . Contact the Global and Experiential Learning Office.
Uganda Studies Program. Located at the Uganda Christian University, Uganda, this program provides students with both immersion in a local community and broad exposure to a variety of people and places in Uganda and Rwanda. There are three emphases offered: Uganda Studies, Social Work, and Global Health Emphasis (Fall only). Students in all tracks take the “Faith & Action” core course, share their lives with university students, living primarily on campus at Uganda Christian University, and have the opportunity to participate in practica. See Off-Campus Programs . Contact the Global and Experiential Learning Office.
Other Approved Programs
AIT-Budapest. Computer Science majors are encouraged to study a semester at Aquincum Institute of Technology in Budapest, Hungary, where courses are taught (in English) by globally-acclaimed scholars, designers and entrepreneurs. AIT’s curriculum integrates design, entrepreneurship, and foundational courses in computer science with advanced applications in computational biology and computer vision applications for digital cinema, as well as humanities courses related to Hungary’s culture and history. Contact departmental faculty and the Global and Experiential Learning Office.
Au Sable Institute of Environmental Studies. With the basic mission of promoting responsible Christian stewardship of God’s creation, Au Sable Institute and Pacific Rim Stewards serve evangelical Christian colleges by providing field-oriented courses earning Gordon credit in January and May, as well as two summer sessions. Study sites are located in northern Michigan, Washington state, Costa Rica and India. Contact Dr. Dorothy Boorse, Gordon’s Au Sable representative.
University of Auckland. Linguistics majors are encouraged to spend a semester studying at Auckland’s School of Cultures, Languages, and Linguistics. The diverse array of linguistics courses there not only fulfills Gordon requirements, but also offers electives in courses like Maori and Polynesian linguistics that cannot be replicated on-campus. Contact departmental faculty and the Global and Experiential Learning Office.
Balkans Semester. The Balkans Semester for the Study of War and Peace is an interdisciplinary program centered on the themes of war and peace, conflict and reconciliation. Students study these themes while learning first-hand from people on both sides of recent wars and genocides who are grappling daily with problems of justice and forgiveness, and with navigating a path toward sustainable peace. Croatia, along with Serbia, Kosovo, and Bosnia and Herzegovina, serve as the backdrop for studying the relevant historical, literary, philosophical, socio-political and theological texts; for interacting with local and international scholars and practitioners; and for examining the role of religion in local conflicts. Students wrestle with the complexities of peace-making through interreligious dialogue while developing a Christian understanding of peace, both in their personal lives and on a global, social and political scale. Contact the Global and Experiential Learning Office.
Budapest Semester in Mathematics. Located in Budapest, Hungary, this program provides an opportunity for qualified students majoring in mathematics or computer science to study in Budapest for one semester. Students can take up to 16 credits of electives for the mathematics major. In addition, they may take courses in Hungarian, the culture of Hungary, or topics such as the history of science, philosophy or film analysis. Courses transfer from St. Olaf College. Contact departmental faculty and the Global and Experiential Learning Office.
Cardiff University. Students interested in chemistry are encouraged to consider a semester’s study (preferably spring semester) at Cardiff University in Wales. Since its foundation in 1883, Cardiff has become one of the UK’s leading research institutions, and the semester at Cardiff affords Gordon students the opportunity to take advantage of a strong and diverse selection of courses in their field. Contact departmental faculty and the Global and Experiential Learning Office.
China Studies Institute. Located in Beijing, China, this program provides courses in English through Peking University in the following areas: economics, business, politics, foreign policy, philosophy, history, art, literature, and Chinese language. Students live in an international student dorm and are eligible for internship placement with major industries and organizations in Beijing. Contact the Global and Experiential Learning Office.
CIEE. Approved for French and Spanish students for their semester’s language study abroad, the Council on International Educational Exchange (CIEE) program offers study opportunities at universities throughout Central and South America, Spain, and France. Students live in homestays; courses vary. Students should consult with their advisor regarding the various program locations. Contact department faculty and the Global and Experiential Learning Office.
Consortium Visitor Program. Undergraduates enrolled at one of the member institutions of the Christian College Consortium with a minimum 2.0 GPA are eligible to be considered for enrollment on another Consortium campus. Enrollment is limited to one term on the campus visited, but additional studies as a special student deferred from Gordon may be possible if approved by the registrars of both institutions. No Gordon aid or scholarships are available for the second semester. Enrollment may be restricted by institutional policy or enrollments, individual course limitations or prerequisite requirements. Contact the Registrar’s Office.
Creation Care Studies Program. This program connects Christian faith with urgent global environmental issues of the day. Programs are offered in Central America (Belize) and the South Pacific (New Zealand). In Belize, students examine sustainable development and tropical ecology through a Christian lens of creation care and stewardship, utilizing field studies in Belizean villages, tropical rain forests, mountain streams and Caribbean atolls. Interest-specific internship and practicum experiences with Belizean organizations are available. In New Zealand students explore a rich variety of ecosystems. New Zealand, home to about 12 percent of all the earth’s endangered species and a world leading innovator in conservation and environmental management, is an ideal place for studying care of creation in a rigorous academic semester that comprises ecology, theology, environmental literature and sustainable community development. Contact the Global and Experiential Learning Office.
University of Edinburgh. Students interested in biology, business, economics and philosophy are encouraged to consider a semester’s study at the University of Edinburgh where students may spend one semester through the university’s Visiting Students Programme. Courses available to students vary with each semester, but the offerings are rich. Students have a variety of on-campus and off-campus housing options with the program. Courses transfer from Edinburgh University. Contact the Global and Experiential Learning Office.
University of Otago. Biology and kinesiology majors are encouraged to consider studying at the University of Otago for a semester. Course availability varies each semester, but students are encouraged to take advantage of the strong and diverse selection of courses available in their field, whether biology students are studying marine sciences, health professions, biology, botany or environmental science. Contact the Global and Experiential Learning Office.
Jerusalem University College. Gordon College is an associate school of Jerusalem University College in Israel. A three-week historical geography course is offered in the summer, and a semester program is offered during the academic year. Courses may be drawn from offerings in biblical studies, history and geography of the Middle East, archaeology, Christian and Jewish communities in Israel, and Hebrew. Courses transfer from Jerusalem University College. Contact Dr. Elaine Phillips in the Biblical Studies and Christian Ministries Department, and the Global and Experiential Learning Office. Participation conditional, based on security issues.
LCC International University, Lithuania. This exchange program sends students from Gordon to LCC and students from LCC to Gordon. Students from Gordon join with 30 other North American students to immerse themselves in the culture of the Baltic states. Courses are available in business, English, theology, psychology, and sociology. There are also courses that could meet core requirements or other requirements for students’ majors. Courses transfer from LCC International University. Contact the Global and Experiential Learning Office.
Marine Studies Consortium. The regional Marine Studies Consortium allows Gordon students to take marine biology courses through Consortium institutions with an additional fee. Contact Biology Department chair.
Romania Semester. The New Horizons Foundation, a pioneering faith-based non-profit NGO in Romania, uses its extensive programming in community development and adventure education for youth in post-communist Romania as the framework for a study-abroad program. As an applied setting for the social sciences, this program can serve international affairs, sustainable development, youth ministry, and nonprofit organization management programs. Students normally earn a full semester of credit transferred from Northwestern College (Iowa) for courses and internship/service learning in Romanian History, Culture and Religion (Eastern Orthodox Christianity), Sustainable Development, Experiential Education and Youth Development. Contact the Global and Experiential Learning Office.
Westmont in San Francisco Urban Program. As the center of a large, diverse metropolitan area, San Francisco offers a unique setting for the study of cultural, economic, political and social aspects of our society. The program provides ready access to the city along with the security and intimacy of a self-determined community. One emphasis of the program is urbanization-its historical process, contemporary problems faced by cities and policy proposals that address these problems. A required urban studies course examines themes such as the nature of cities, how community forms in the urban environment, the ways race and ethnicity shape people’s interactions in the city, the range of understandings of poverty and how best to address it, and the call to Christians in relation to these various issues. The Urban Program emphasizes student responsibility for their learning. The program is experience-based with considerable fieldwork and involvement in the issues and life of San Francisco. Courses transfer from Westmont College. Contact the Global and Experiential Learning Office.
Other International and Domestic Opportunities
If in consultation with a student’s academic advisor the above programs do not adequately meet the goals of a student’s curriculum or career needs, the student may petition the Global Education Committee for permission to apply to a nonapproved program. Formal, structured programs are available through a variety of institutions in many countries overseas. Some programs require fluency in a foreign language while other programs offer courses taught in English. Contact the Global and Experiential Learning Office for information regarding petition forms.
Academic Honor Societies
Alpha Mu Gamma. Alpha Mu Gamma (AMG) is a national foreign language honor society whose Kappa Epsilon Chapter was established at Gordon in 1983 to acknowledge achievement in the field of foreign languages, encourage academic excellence in the field of linguistics and cultural studies, promote cultural awareness inherent in foreign language study, and foster sympathetic understanding of other peoples and international friendship. Invitation to membership in the Gordon chapter is contingent upon the support of a faculty member in the department and is extended to students who have satisfied the following requirements: an overall cumulative GPA of 3.5 or better; a grade of A/A- in 8 nonrepeated credits of language classes taken on campus at the 200-level or higher (at the 300-level or higher for Spanish majors); no grade below a B in foreign language; and a declared major or minor in foreign language-Chinese (Mandarin), French, Spanish, combined languages, and related Pike contract majors.
Phi Alpha Chi. Phi Alpha Chi was founded at Gordon in 1928 as a scholastic honor society. The Greek letters stand for Philoi Aletheias Christou-Lovers of the Truth of Christ. On the foundation of its evangelical commitment, Phi Alpha Chi is dedicated to the encouragement and recognition of scholarly research, clear thinking and creativity by Christians in every discipline. Persons eligible for membership must be graduating seniors who have pursued studies at Gordon for at least four semesters and who have a cumulative grade point average of 3.75 or higher. Annual inductees may not exceed 15 percent of the graduating class, and thus, the actual GPA cutoff may be higher. Nominations are obtained from the faculty and new members are elected by the Phi Alpha Chi executive committee prior to induction at commencement.
Phi Sigma Iota. The Zeta Chapter of Phi Sigma Iota, the national honor society in foreign languages, was established at Gordon in 1978. It recognizes outstanding achievement in upper-level courses in any foreign language and linguistics. Membership is by invitation only.
Sigma Delta Pi. The Eta Omicron Chapter of Sigma Delta Pi, the national honor society in Spanish, was established at Gordon in March 1969, the 183rd chapter in the country and the first chapter in Massachusetts. Membership is by invitation only and is limited to advanced Spanish students.
Sigma Pi Sigma. Students elected to membership in Sigma Pi Sigma must attain high standards of general scholarship and outstanding achievement in physics. Membership is by invitation only. The Gordon College chapter of Sigma Pi Sigma was established in 2012. Chapters are restricted to colleges and universities of recognized standing that offer a strong physics major program.
Sigma Tau Delta. The Alpha Upsilon Omega chapter of Sigma Tau Delta, the International English Honors Society, was established in 2014. The chapter seeks to celebrate and foster academic achievement in literary studies, as well as promote interest in English literature and writing within the Gordon community. Membership is by invitation only and is limited to English majors and minors of high academic standing.
Sigma Xi. First established at Gordon College in 2009, Sigma Xi is an international, multidisciplinary research society whose programs and activities promote the health of the scientific enterprise and honor excellence in scientific investigation. Candidates nominated by faculty to join the North Shore Chapter of Sigma Xi (Gordon College, Endicott College and Salem State College) must be graduating seniors with GPA of at least 3.0 pursuing degrees in science or engineering and have shown an aptitude and experience in original and independent research.
Departmental Honors Programs
Gordon College has established honors programs for exceptional majors. General requirements include a research project culminating in a written honors thesis, which is presented orally and defended in front of department faculty. See departmental listing for specific details for each major.
Jerusalem and Athens Forum
The Jerusalem and Athens Forum is a one-year great books honors program in the history of Christian thought and literature. In a small-seminar setting, students read and discuss classic texts from antiquity to the present, focusing on their implications for present-day living, learning and leadership. Additional activities of the program include retreats to explore questions of personal vocation and intellectual commitment, cultural activities in Boston and the North Shore, a public debate on an issue of pressing moral concern, roundtable discussions with Gordon’s faculty and interaction with prominent guest speakers. Scholarships available. Students must have a 3.0 GPA or higher and sophomore status to begin the program. Offered as two six-credit courses. On completion of both semesters, students may petition through the program director to fulfill up to 12 credits of core requirements, selecting from HIS 121 Historical Perspectives on Culture, Belief and Civilization , PHI 118 The Examined Life , social science, or literature. Application of credit to a major is at the discretion of individual departments. No more than 12 credits total may be applied between core, major, or minor requirements. For further information contact Dr. Paul Brink or Dr. Jennifer Hevelone-Harper, co-directors.
Pike Honors Program
The Kenneth L. Pike Honors Program is a selective, rigorous program designed to provide exceptional students with a unique opportunity to achieve academic goals not possible under existing Gordon programs.
Students who complete at least one semester at Gordon College with a cumulative grade point average of 3.5 are invited to consider crafting individualized, disciplined and challenging academic experiences, usually interdisciplinary in nature. Applicants devise a draft proposal in consultation with faculty with knowledge of the discipline and/or a Pike Honors Program Committee representative, meet with the Pike chair, and then submit a program proposal to the Pike Committee for review. An approved program will either fulfill an existing major or minor in a unique way, or will be a “contract major or minor” comparable to programs in a recognized discipline not available at Gordon. Pike contract majors or minors must be approved by both the Pike and Academic Programs Committees of the faculty. Normally at least three semesters must be completed in the program after approval as a scholar by the Pike Committee.
To remain in the program, the scholar’s cumulative grade point average must not fall below 3.5 for a total of three semesters. No grade may be earned below a C in any course. A student who withdraws from the program or is discontinued may not be reinstated. See www.gordon.edu/pike or contact the Registrar’s Office for details.