Jun 23, 2024  
2024-25 Catalog 
2024-25 Catalog


Each Reed student’s educational program includes one year of humanities studies in the first year. Students may elect to continue the study of humanities with courses in the early modern and modern periods of European civilization or in the foundations of Chinese civilization.

The humanities curriculum places primary emphasis not upon information, but upon the development of disciplined thinking and writing through the interpretation of works of art, literature, or other means by which people have expressed themselves and ordered their lives, individually and socially. Courses acquaint students with poetry, drama, painting, sculpture, music, religion, philosophical systems, forms of political and social order, and historical works.

Students are encouraged to think about course materials in their cultural contexts and from the perspective of a variety of individual disciplines. In a structure that allows Reed students to develop multiple perspectives on a common body of learning, scholars from many disciplines lecture and lead conferences in the course. One of the three units of credit for HUM 110  reflects the attention given explicitly to developing analytical and writing skills, where the representative works studied are effective subjects for frequent papers, discussed in individual paper conferences.

Course Requirements

  • All first-year students are required to take HUM 110 , as are those transfer students who have not completed equivalent transferable courses.
  • It is recommended that sophomores take two units of HUM 211 HUM 212 HUM 221 HUM 222 HUM 231 , and HUM 232 .

Transfer student humanities: students transferring more than six units may substitute two units in 200-level humanities courses and one additional unit from Group I or Group II for the first-year humanities requirement. Courses used to fulfill the humanities requirement may not be used to fulfill other college distribution requirements.