The Great Texts Program is a community of scholars and students who study, discuss, and write about some of the most powerful works of literature, philosophy, and theology, from antiquity to the present. We study these works as part of an ongoing conversation about how we order our lives as human communities and as individuals. We offer a major, a minor, and a secondary major. Our courses are also part of the curriculum for students in the Honors Program, the University Scholars Program, and the School of Engineering and Computer Science. Great Texts courses provide apprenticeship in the skills of writing and analysis that everyone needs, but we do this in the context of debates and stories (historical and fictive) that offer formation in practical wisdom. We also recognize the central place of Christian faith in those ongoing debates and narratives.
Great Texts graduates excel in a wide variety of professions. The major includes a pre-law track as well as a pre-med track. Many of our students also go on to graduate studies in theology, literature, or politics, while others go into Classical education. (The Great Texts major includes a new Liberal Arts Tradition concentration for those interested in Classical education.) Our graduates have gone into professions ranging from pharmacology to the piloting of military helicopters, but their shared experience of Great Texts has taught them not to mistake how they earn a living for who they are. They have good jobs, but they have also considered what it means to be genuinely free.
Many academic disciplines focus on either general principles (concepts) or individual particulars (historical details), but the study of Great Texts provides you with the experience of making connections between these realities, discerning how and why specific concepts may or may not be relevant to a particular situation. This is why Great Texts provides such excellent formation for the medical and legal professions but also for anyone interested in lived practical wisdom.
Not everyone is a scientist, or an engineer, or a business leader, but all scientists, all engineers, and all business leaders are human beings. The study of Great Texts provides you with an opportunity to become a genuine leader in your academic discipline or professional field. Reality doesn’t conveniently divide up questions of knowledge from questions of ethics or questions of enjoyment. In contrast to modern academic disciplines, the study of Great Texts allows you to ask the most practical questions about how we, as humans, order our lives together by exploring the connections between what we know, how we live, and what we enjoy. If you are interested in being a leader in your field, consider adding Great Texts as a minor or secondary major.
No; our courses extend from the ancients to the moderns. See a list of possible texts and authors that you would study. The major includes a core historical sequence that goes through the twentieth century, in addition to topical courses on music, the visual arts, the philosophy of science, business, leadership, and Christian spirituality.
The Great Texts program is one of the four programs that make up the Honors College. By declaring a Great Texts major, minor, or secondary major, students become part of the Honors College. Together with the Honors Program, Baylor Interdisciplinary Core, and University Scholars, we work to provide all of our students with a world-class education, taught by leading scholars in their disciplines, in a caring Christian community.
Great Texts courses are open to Baylor students across the university. Students do not have to be in the Honors Program to take Great Texts courses or to major or minor in Great Texts.
There is no application to join the Great Texts program. Simply declare Great Texts as your major in your goBaylor account or speak to your advisor about choosing a Great Texts major, secondary major, or minor.
The Honors College website has an expansion resource of FAQs for you to reference.