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James Madison College provides a liberal education in public affairs for undergraduates. This means, among other things, that our primary activity as a faculty and staff is undergraduate teaching. We are dedicated to the highest standards of excellence, both for our students and for ourselves. Our curriculum and individual courses are multi-disciplinary, cultivating skills of rigorous thought, lucid prose writing, and articulate speech. We learn in a residential setting that nurtures a collegium of scholars among students, faculty and staff and draw on the resources of the wider University to enrich our lives.

Community Norms and Values

As a residential college designed to cultivate learning, belonging, and human relationships, we promote a community based on the practice of these core values:

Integrity: building trust, honesty, mutual respect, reliability, and ethical behavior

Diversity: ensuring compassion, empathy, and the value of (respect for) difference

Equity and Justice: creating an environment in which equity and fairness are prioritized; promoting and valuing the wellness of all persons

Accountability: being willing to reflect upon as well as take responsibility for one’s actions and behaviors in ways that are guided by community norms and values

Shared governance: collectively enhancing the inclusion of all community members in transparent decision making and knowledge related to the college

Pursuit of knowledge: valuing intellectual growth and acquisition of knowledge

Engagement: participating in service efforts related to the betterment of communities locally and around the world

Statement of Learning Principles

As Madisonians, we affirm the necessity of compassion, conscientiousness, and curiosity in our community. We acknowledge our academic and moral responsibility to always seek to learn from one another, approaching our scholarly endeavors with respect and humility. We understand that this process can be uncomfortable, and that it often requires challenging closely held beliefs. Nevertheless, we strive to always participate in discussions in good faith, and to build a community conducive to the intellectual growth of all.