The Christian Institute for the Study of Liberal Arts

The spirit of Christian humanism finds expression in Alcuin’s own letters to Charles the Great: ‘If your intentions are carried out,’ he writes, ‘it may be that a new Athens will arise in France, and an Athens fairer than the old, for our Athens, ennobled by the teaching of Christ, will surpass the wisdom of the Academy. The old Athens had only the teachings of Plato to instruct it, yet even so it flourished by the seven liberal arts. But our Athens will be enriched by the gift of the Holy Spirit and will, therefore surpass all the dignity of earthly wisdom’.
–Christopher Dawson

Septem artes liberalesThe purpose of the Christian Institute for the Study of Liberal Arts is to glorify God by embracing academic excellence and emphasizing a strong commitment to integrity within a caring, Christian environment. Specifically, the Institute serves as a unique branch of the Great Books Honors College and provides a special means for working across disciplines with collaborative projects among students and the various fellows who serve the Institute.

The Institute’s areas of tutoring and research will include:

  • Humanities and Liberal Arts
  • Bible
  • Philosophy
  • Religion
  • Science (Biology, Physics, Astronomy)
  • Mathematics
  • Social Sciences (Psychology, Sociology, Civics, Political Science)
  • History (Ancient, Modern, European, and American)
  • Literature (Literary classics, Rhetoric)

Institute students and fellows interact in a virtual learning community through Google Apps for Education. What is most challenging, but also most rewarding is that the Institute is a Great Books/Great Ideas organization that deals mostly with primary sources, in English translation as necessary, of the masterpieces and classics of the Western tradition.

Institute fellows are involved in tutoring, writing, and developing educational resources. All fellows are presently involved on a part-time basis as needed and as opportunity allows. Types of part-time Institute fellowships include:

  • Tutoring Fellows primarily to tutor in the undergraduate and graduate programs, or both.
  • Research and Writing Fellows primarily to develop education resources for distribution.
  • Scholarly Fellows have special standing in the Institute due to a breadth of wisdom and experience and, in addition to tutoring, researching, and writing, serve as ongoing consultants for the betterment of the Institute.

Further information about these fellowships is available here. Fellowship applications are invited from qualified individuals according to the information below.

Application Criteria and Materials
To be considered for the Institute fellow candidate pool, candidates applying to work with:

  • The BLitt program must possess at least a Master’s degree and
  • The MLitt or PhD programs must possess at least a Doctor’s degree.

To apply, qualified applicants must submit:

  • A cover letter including a list of disciplinary teaching or research competencies;
  • A vita or résumé including names and contact information for three academic or professional references; and
  • Graduate and post-graduate transcript copies; official transcripts will be required if an applicant is hired.

Application documents should be sent to: Dr. Robert M. Woods, Director of the Great Books Honors College, at Faulkner University, 5345 Atlanta Hwy, Montgomery, AL 36109 or at director@studyliberalarts.org. Questions may also be addressed to the director via email or telephone (334-386-7313).

Knowledge can puff us with pride, but if it is received rightly, a liberal education inculcates at least one virtue: the master virtue of humility.
–Peter Leithart