2011-2013 Undergraduate Catalog

General Education Requirements

The baccalaureate degree includes three distinct and required areas of study:  general education, concentration (major), and electives.

General Education provides for breadth of study across many areas of knowledge.  All students are required to complete the General Education program as an essential component of the baccalaureate degree.

An area of concentration provides for depth of study within a chosen discipline (major).  Students choose their major, but the specialized, in-depth courses they take are determined by the department which is responsible for the major.

Electives guarantee that students have the opportunity to study areas of personal interest in their own academic pursuits.  Students are allowed to choose courses (electives) from any discipline that interests them.

The Purpose of General Education


The objectives of General Education are to help students develop and demonstrate an understanding of humanity and what it means to be members of the global community.  Students completing General Education will reflect upon the evolution of culture, and learn to identify and value responsible roles for the human being in the physical, social, and intellectual worlds.


General Education is structured to fulfill the objectives by addressing essential components of human development:  (1) Skills Development and Application, (2) Cultural Development, and (3) Intellectual Growth and Development.  Specific courses applicable to General Education are arranged in categories and selected to ensure that students completing General Education are intellectually engaged in each of these areas of human development.

  1. Skills Development and Application ensures that students will develop effective writing, mathematical, reading and oral communication skills.

  2. Cultural Development ensures that students will develop an understanding of the evolution of human culture and social organizations, and an appreciation of cultural diversity.

  3. Intellectual Growth and Development ensures that students will pursue knowledge, integrate knowledge among disciplines, apply knowledge to the identification and solving of problems, understand the importance of personal and societal ethics, and reflect on and appreciate the diversity of human endeavors.

General Education Minimum Satisfactory Course Grade

By action of the University’s Academic Senate, the minimum satisfactory grade students must earn in a General Education course is “C-” or better.  However, students must earn an overall GPA of 2.0 in the General Education core.  (11/10/05 memo #473 p. 1770)


Beginning in Fall 2013, students will complete 31 credits, rather than 37 credits, of General Education.  By action of the Academic Senate, each program which requires the General Education core will now require 6 credits of restricted electives chosen with advisor approval.

Students will complete 31 credits of required courses with either traditional courses, discipline-specific courses, or integrated courses.  All courses that fulfill General Education requirements are specifically designed for General Education.

Category Required Credits
I. Global Academic Skills 9
  A.  Mathematics 3
  B.  English 3
  C.  Communication & Information Literacy 3
II. Natural Sciences 7
  A.  Life Sciences 3-4
  B.  Physical Sciences 3-4
III. Social Sciences and History 6
  A.  Social Sciences 3
  B.  History 3
IV.  Cultural Diversity 3
V. Arts and Humanities 6
  A.  Fine Arts 3
  B.  Humanities 3
Total Required Credits 31

  NEXT: Category Descriptions

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