Middlebury’s original purpose was to train young men from Vermont and neighboring states for the ministry and other learned professions of the early 19th century.
Our first students—all seven of them!—were expected “to read, translate, and parse Tully, Virgil, and the Greek Testament, and to write true Latin in prose, and [to have] learned the rules of Vulgar Arithmetic.”
In the course of its 214-year history, Middlebury's curriculum has shifted to respond to educational theory, world events, and changing times, but it remains firmly rooted in the liberal arts tradition—characterized by breadth of experience across many fields and disciplines, as well as in-depth study in one area defined by the major. An emphasis on writing in all disciplines sharpens students’ capacity for critical thinking and expression. Each department has designed its major to ensure that students not only learn key content but also the methodologies, languages, and modes of thinking and expression that characterize that discipline.
Changes to the curriculum, including proposals for new majors, minors, or educational programs must be vetted by the Educational Affairs Committee. All recommended changes to the curriculum must be submitted to the Educational Affairs Committee for review.