Undergraduate Program - New Saint Andrews College

Undergraduate Program

Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Arts and Culture

Education was always meant to create free, robust, leading men and women.
—President Ben Merkle

New Saint Andrews combines a clear and principled voice on social issues, unwavering biblical convictions, and a dedication to academic excellence, in order to create the kind of leaders our culture desperately needs. Our low student to faculty ratio creates close, dialogue-driven classes. Along with our academically rigorous, single-focus major, we deliver on our mission to make students courageous, capable, wise leaders.

Disciplines

Students in the Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Arts and Culture study the following disciplines during their education.

Languages

Seeking to revitalize the western languages, New Saint Andrews has some of the most unique undergraduate language study in the world. By teaching students to speak and compose in classical languages, we increase the ease of beginning a language and heighten language mastery as well. While language study aids us in almost every academic discipline, most importantly, it gives us greater insight into God’s word. It also gives us greater insight into our own culture, since Greek, Latin, and Hebrew were all formative languages in Western Christendom.

Latin

Latin was the language of the western world’s growth and the language of the Reformation, which makes it an essential subject for any Christian liberal arts program. At New Saint Andrews, incoming freshmen are placed in one of seven tracks, so that—no matter what level of ability—they may progress as far in Latin as they are willing and able. Many of our students are able to read, speak, and write Latin by their second year of study. Four years of study are available, spanning Classical, Medieval, and Reformation-era Latin. Studies include the study of authors like Virgil, Ovid, Livy, and Phaedrus, and students engage with Latin poetry, the Vulgate, Augustine’s Confessions and many other texts.

Greek

While the Greek language is one of the classical languages of the West, most significantly the New Testament was written in Greek. Through Greek studies, New Saint Andrews gives students insights into our western tradition from the classical age and into the Reformation, and Greek studies enable students to conduct true scholarship and study of the New Testament in its original language. Students electing to take Greek may choose between New Testament and Classical Greek. Just as in the Latin program, students learn to read, speak, and write in Greek. This is the only undergraduate degree in the country that offers spoken and written Greek instruction. Our most successful students not only have direct access to the Greek New Testament and Septuagint, but also to the great works of antiquity written in Classical Greek, such as Homer, Plato, and Herodotus. Three years of Greek study are available, spanning Homeric, Classical, New Testament, Early Christian, and Reformation-era texts.

Hebrew

Students may elect to take Biblical Hebrew courses with an emphasis on exegesis and interpretation of the Old Testament. Our most successful students have direct access to the Hebrew Old Testament and are well prepared for seminary, graduate school, and a lifetime of personal study of the Scriptures in Hebrew. Three years of Hebrew study are available, spanning literature from the Old Testament to the Medieval Jewish Grammarians, who are so important for understanding Reformation-era works. Hebrew studies include texts like the Dead Sea Scrolls, 2nd Temple literature, Medieval Hebrew poetry, and select Rabbinic texts.

Middle English

Chaucer nowadays is usually read in modernized prose editions. But at New Saint Andrews, students interact with Chaucer and other Middle English authors in their original verse. Unlike with other languages, Middle-English students jump directly into reading original texts, such as The Canterbury Tales and various Chaucer texts, and Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. Students develop a powerful understanding of English language, working to master pronunciation and retain Middle English vocabulary as they delve deep into the mechanics of poetry and the history of our language.

Humanities

A broad spectrum of subjects exists under the umbrella of humanities. These subjects comprise the fabric of culture and society, and students gain a meta-narrative of humanity’s most significant ideas and their culturally shaping effects. Students get to know the thinkers behind the theories and their contexts. Our college recognizes these thinkers as cultural leaders, and seeks to build upon their work.

Philosophy

As philosophy becomes more peripheral in colleges, New Saint Andrews keeps it central in its single-focus major. Students engage philosophy as a mode of inquiry addressing the ultimate questions of life—e.g., questions of existence, knowledge, and values—and which, as such, seeks to uncover the foundational principles of any given subject matter. Thus, while the liberal arts education at New Saint Andrews College attempts to take a properly philosophical approach to all of its subjects—including the languages, history, literature, and more—students also have the particular opportunity to take philosophy courses on such topics as God, man, society and politics, religion, apologetics, economics, science, and mathematics. 

Economics

At New Saint Andrews, students have the opportunity to study economic theory and economic practices. Studies include a systematic introduction to the economic laws of all human action, including such microeconomic topics as the origins and nature of money, price theory, supply and demand, capital and interest, entrepreneurship and profit, and financial markets, and such macroeconomic topics as free market capitalism, socialism, Keynesianism, economic growth, employment, the banking system, inflation, recessions, government regulation, and tax policy. Electives and directed studies in the history of economic thought and in special economic topics are offered as well.

Politics

While our college is conservative in its stance, political studies are more than partisan topics. The very nature of politics is considered: is politics the science of the political community in general or, more narrowly, is it the science of the moral use of coercion in particular? This is one of the many questions raised in our undergraduate program. Students can undertake a systematic and historical introduction to politics, reading and debating such classical works as Plato’s Republic, Aristotle’s Ethics, Augustine’s City of God, Aquinas’s On Kingship, Calvin’s “On Civil Government,” and John Locke’s Second Treatise on Government. Studies also cover such topics as conservatism, libertarianism, democracy, federalism and the American founding, and Constitutional law. Electives and directed studies in the history of political thought and in special political topics are offered as well. These studies equip our graduates with an incredibly deep and robust understanding, an ability to converse and persuade, as well as mature conviction when it comes to the civic sphere. 

History

For leaders to anticipate the future, they need to understand the past. New Saint Andrews recognizes the value of knowing the story of our culture and society, and so all students are required to study the works of the West’s great historians from ancient Near Eastern authors to Karl Marx. While gaining a vision of the greater historical narrative, students also consider the contexts of the historians themselves and the philosophy of history keeping. In particular, students consider how the western tradition reflects back upon itself, analyzing how western historians tell their own story. Written assignments require library research, interaction with current historical scholarship, and original research using both written and oral sources. Courses engage classical antiquity, the rise of Christendom, and the Reformation and its aftermath.

Literature

New Saint Andrews recognizes the incredible influence of literature on culture as it often serves, in Hamlet’s words, as “a mirror held up to nature.” Students are guided through the great tradition of literature, studying the genres of epic, tragedy, the novel, and lyric poetry. Courses approach literature as concrete language, as the language of experience, as a formal art, forging connections between things, aiming to synthesize rather than analyze. Studies include the texts that have most shaped western civilization, including authors such as Homer, Shakespeare, Frost, Dostoevsky, McCarthy and more, with the opportunity to take further literature electives.

Rhetoric

Communication is an essential part of life. It is a skill that both the workforce and the civic sphere of our society desperately need. In both oratory and writing, students at New Saint Andrews are trained to to persuade, inform, and motivate. These rhetorical skills become habits that students will employ in all their course work. Aristotle’s Rhetoric and Rhetorica ad Herennium, and Quintilian’s Institutio Oratoria serve as foundation texts for rhetoric studies. Students progress through formal and informal logic, persuasive writing and its fundamental components, and rhetorical principles in oratory. Both prepared and impromptu rhetorical exercises are regular in rhetoric studies.

Arts

Students examine some of history’s greatest creative works, learning how different philosophies of art develop through time and how they relate to one another. At New Saint Andrews, we train students to analyze and love what is beautiful in a world that progressively cannot apprehend true beauty. Our courses also provide a hands-on opportunity to craft language and music with the guidance of expert faculty. As a college, we take seriously the power of artistry upon the human imagination.

Music

Because of its central role in the worship of God and church liturgy, music is one of the main arts at New Saint Andrews. Studies progress through four different but related perspectives: written music theory, aural skills, historical musicology, and vocal performance. For music theory, students work to gain mastery of the mathematical and scientific aspects of music, learning the various structures of music and examining complex harmonic analysis. Aural skills include foundational skills necessary for hearing, reading, writing, and signing music.  In historical musicology, students examine the western tradition of music with a focus on aesthetics and worldview; studies include examining music from the Renaissance, Baroque, Classical, Romantic, and Modern eras. And finally, vocal performance includes instruction in classical vocal technique through group voice class or Concert choir. 

Creative Writing

Students can elect to take creative writing courses to improve both their prose and their poetry. Courses in screenwriting, persuasive writing, and authorial development develop New Saint Andrews students into well-rounded wordsmiths. Literary skills include writing towards themes, developing a plot, designing captivating characters, crafting believable dialogue. Readings include critically acclaimed screenplays, essays, and fictional pieces. Undergraduates will also read classic writing manuals like Save the Cat by Blake Snyder, Into the Woods by John Yorke, Spunk and Bite by Arthur Plotnik, A Dash of Style by Noah Lukeman. Students will leave with foundational skills in composition, concision, clarity, tone, voice, metaphor use and more.

Architecture

Architecture reflects the ideas of a culture, and it affects hearts and minds. Undergraduates and learn the philosophy and poetics of architecture and its relationship to our identities. With the Bible as a preeminent guide, other texts of study include The Ten Books on Architecture by Vitruvius, From Bauhaus to Our House by Tom Wolfe, House Form and Culture by Amos Rapaport, and Understanding Architecture, Its Elements, History, and Meaning by Leland M. Roth. Students will get a global survey of modal (nomadic) architecture, regional forms, and epochal forms (e.g. Gothic, Chinese, Roman). Lastly, undergraduates will consider the origins and nature of “modernism”, and what a principled Christian alternative might look like.

Science and Math

Science and math are studied from both a macro and a micro perspective. The historical developments of each subject are covered with special attention given to the philosophy and epistemology behind the subjects. The logical foundations of math and the shaping of scientific theories, as well as the relationship between physics and metaphysics, give students a wide-angle vision to understand the nature of both subjects.

Math and Physics

The liberal arts curriculum at New Saint Andrews is unique by its inclusion of mathematics. We recognize the foundational relationship between math, logic, and reason, and math’s downstream consequences on the marketplace of ideas. Students investigate the nature of mathematics and physics, observing the interplay between math, philosophy, and scientific theories. Also considered is the relationship of physics to metaphysics. Beginning with Pythagorean origins, students learn the influence of mathematics on thinkers from Plato to Leibniz. Calculus, non-Euclidean geometries and finite numbers, and the logical foundations of math can all be studied in the undergraduate program.

Science (Natural History)

One of secularism’s most aggressive fronts is the field of science. At New Saint Andrews, students are immersed in a unified introduction to the life sciences. We explore the unity, diversity, and complexity of creation through readings, lectures, lab experience and field research. Students gain a broad foundation in biology while special attention is given to in the human body. Unfolding God’s creation not only gives students an appreciation of his wisdom and power, but also causes them to be conversant in current issues like origins, evolution, and human nature.

Theology

As queen of the sciences, theology provides the bookends for the undergraduate program: students take theology freshman and senior years. At New Saint Andrews, we recognize theology as the lodestar of all education—it orients every subject and class. Following the reformed tradition, we study theology’s two-fold foundation: the doctrines of God and scripture.

There is no knowing that does not begin with knowing God.
—John Calvin

 

Theology

Freshman theology is a year-long introduction to essential truths of the Christian faith, concerned with cultivating a life informed and formed by a robust vision of the Creator and all creation in relation to Him. Embracing a Reformed perspective, the course focuses on those practices befitting orthodoxy and orthopraxy, including confession, prayer, and praise, all undertaken within the communion of saints, unto the glory of the Triune God and enjoyment of fellowship with Him. 

Senior-year theology is built upon the two foundations (principia) found in Reformed Theology: The doctrine of God and the doctrine of Scripture. The doctrine of God (principium essendi) is  not only foundational to the senior-year theology colloquium, rather true knowledge and love for God is the desired end of the whole year. The doctrine of scripture (principium cognoscendi) is essential for any proper understanding of God’s self-revelation to us in his written word. The senior-year theology colloquium progresses in its study of this principium cognoscendi from a study of the phenomena of God’s written word to the important question of how to read it faithfully as Christians. 

Apologetics

New Saint Andrews College considers it a privilege to equip students with minds capable of defending God, his authority, and his word. We recognize this as a great need of our time. By studying the philosophical underpinnings of science, mathematics, logic, and epistemology, our graduates leave confident in their own faith and in their ability to deconstruct arguments against the faith.

Overview

The liberal arts are a collection of diverse and time tested subjects which develop creative and critical thinkers. New Saint Andrews continually mines the riches of the liberal arts tradition and refines the curriculum for contemporary life and work. The studies are integrated and interdisciplinary which not only creates more robust, adaptable minds but is true everyday living.

Leaders in Careers with Skill

High-achieving professionals are leaders in our culture. Although it is not our sole purpose, New Saint Andrews seeks to graduate students prepared for careers. The single-focus major creates critical, creative, and versatile minds. As full, four-year liberal arts programs are rapidly disappearing, it is no surprise the workforce is more desperate than ever for graduates with liberal arts skills. The workforce needs people who can understand the big picture while comprehending the details; who can synthesize the various parts of a project that seem disparate; who can learn and perform their tasks well while leading with joy and confidence.

91% of employers say critical thinking and communication is more important than the name of your degree.
—The Association of American Colleges and Universities

 

Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom.
—Proverbs

 

Leaders in Culture with Wisdom

Wisdom and courage are essential to leadership. New Saint Andrews has long held a principled and clear voice, championing the truth of God’s word and ways, while so many other colleges veer into softness and secularism. We are committed to continuing this legacy in our students through our curriculum, community, and close faculty-student relationships. While pursuing academic excellence, we maintain a culture of spiritual devotion and gratitude toward Jesus Christ.

Four-Year Map | Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Arts and Culture

At New Saint Andrews, an academic year is comprised of four, quarter terms. In the first year, all freshmen students take the same foundational courses. As students progress into upperclassman, they are able to take a greater number of electives and can lean into disciplines of their choice. All graduates finish by completing a senior thesis.

Year 1

Music

Freshman Theology

Classical Rhetoric

Latin

Year 2

Classical Language (Latin, Greek, or Hebrew)

Classical Culture and History

Natural History (Biology)

Electives

Year 3

Philosophy Electives

Mathematics

Literature Electives

Classical Language (Latin, Greek, or Hebrew)

Year 4

Senior Theology

Senior Thesis

Electives

Undergraduate Catalog

To view all our undergraduate courses, download the 2019-2020 academic catalog.

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