General Education requirements

Curriculum Structure

The General Education curriculum is comprised of three types of requirements: core requirements; distribution requirements; and intensive requirements.

I. CORE REQUIREMENTS: 23 credits

These core courses develop key competencies required of all students and introduce them to the general education program and the university. The core requirements must be taken by all undergraduates, regardless of major, unless they are transfer students with equivalent coursework from another undergraduate institution or they provide evidence of course mastery. Any exceptions to the mandatory completion of a core requirement will be listed below.

Students may not achieve junior status until they have completed all 23 credits of the core requirements.

Essential Skills (15 credits)
HEN 112 English I (3 credits). Students must complete Freshman English I unless, in its place, their advisor recommends taking English II (HEN 113) as their first composition course at the university. Students that supersede English I must take HEN 319 Advanced Composition to satisfy the 6 credits of composition required in the Gen Ed.

HEN 113 English II (3 credits). Students must complete Freshman English II or the equivalent in composition. Students may be required to complete HEN 319 if they supersede English I (HEN 112); see details stated above for HEN 112.

HEN 114 Fundamentals of Speech (3 credits).

EDU 110 Introduction to Interpretation and Analysis (3 credits). Students must complete a college-level reading course in which students critically read and analyze difficult texts, and gain proficiency in interpreting, paraphrasing, and evaluating the written word.

HPH 110 Critical Thinking (3 credits). Students must complete a foundational course for the information literacy intensive courses. It is encouraged that students complete this course prior to enrolling in courses with an information literacy (I) intensive course.

Mathematics (3 credits)
MAT 104 Survey of College Mathematics (3 credits). Upon their advisors’ recommendation or degree program requirement, students may instead be required to complete MAT 111 Intermediate Algebra, MAT 150 Elementary Functions, or MAT 201 Calculus I instead of MAT 104 to satisfy their Gen Ed requirement.

African-American Experience (3 credits)
African-American Experience in Global Context (3 credits). This is a sophomore class in which the major themes of the general education program are explored in an interdisciplinary format. Transfer students who enter the university in their junior year do not need to take this class; however, alternative coursework, approved by the department that hosts the student’s degree program, must be completed to ensure 120 credits for graduation.

Freshman Year Experience (2 credits)
GAC 101 Freshman Seminar I (1 credit). Students must complete the first-half of a two course sequence that orients students to the university; these courses are not normally taken by transfer students. In the event that a transfer student does not have equivalent transfer credits, alternative coursework, approved by the department that hosts the student’s degree program, must be completed to ensure 120 credits for graduation.

GAC 102 Freshman Seminar II (1 credit). Students must complete the second-half of a two course sequence that orients students to the university; other stipulations are as stated above for GAC 101.

II. DISTRIBUTION REQUIREMENTS: 28 credits

All students must take a specified number of credits in a variety of academic disciplines. The distribution requirements are intended to develop fluency with the different modes of learning practiced across the academy. Distribution courses must be courses outside the students major, unless this is deemed not feasible by their major department.Courses that satisfy the distribution requirements are determined by the housing Departments, updated annually, and can be viewed below by selecting the corresponding hyperlink.

Natural Sciences (6 credits)
Students must complete two courses or 6 credits in the natural sciences; the natural sciences include biology, physics, chemistry, and earth or space science. Students may take two courses in one of these subject areas or one course in two of these subject areas. Approved natural sciences distribution courses can be seen here

Humanities (6 credits)
Students must complete two courses or 6 credits in the humanities; the humanities include literature, language, theater, music, visual arts, or philosophy. Students may take two courses in one of these subject areas or one course in two of these subject areas. Approved humanities distribution courses can be seen here

Social Science (6 credits)
Students must complete two courses or 6 credits in the social sciences; the social sciences include psychology, sociology, history, economics, political science, and geography. Students may take two courses in one of these subject areas or one course in two of these subject areas. Approved social sciences distribution courses can be seen here

Foreign Language (6 credits)
Students must complete two courses or 6 credits in the same foreign language. Only Spanish and French are currently offered at the university; however, students may pursue additional languages at another institution of higher education or through distance education. All students must complete this requirement unless they can demonstrate intermediate level proficiency, which is the equivalent to the second year of college-level study. Approved foreign language distribution courses can be seen here

Health and Wellness (3-4 credits)
Students must complete REC 111 Health and Wellness and two recreation courses; satisfactory recreation (REC) courses are numbered REC 113 through 211. Approved health and wellness distribution courses can be seen here.

III. INTENSIVE REQUIREMENTS

The purpose of the intensive requirements is to ensure that all students receive extensive and in-depth instruction in four areas deemed significant: writing (W), African American heritage (A), global studies (G), or information literacy (I). Unlike the other requirements in the Gen Ed, these requirements are simultaneously satisfied while completing coursework either in the student’s major or general education program. Courses are not permanently associated with an intensive requirement and may be offered with or without the designation at the discretion of the department.

Writing (3 courses; or 9 credits)
Students must complete three writing intensive courses. English I and II do not satisfy the writing intensive requirement and, appropriately, will not bare the W designation. These courses are intended to provide additional experiences for the student to master their writing skills; this is accomplished by limiting the enrollment to 20 students; explicitly attending to plagiarism, requiring at least 15 pages of writing, and opportunities to resubmit papers --- among other criteria. A list of possible courses that may be offered with this designation can be seen here.

African American Heritage (1 course; or 3 credits)
Students must complete a course that includes significant consideration of some aspect of African American history or experience. African American Experience in the Global Context (AAS 210) does not satisfy the African American Heritage intensive requirement and, appropriately, does not bare the A designation. A list of possible courses that may be offered with this designation can be seen here.

Global Studies (1 course; or 3 credits)
Students must complete a course that includes significant consideration of cultures and nations other than the U.S. African American Experience in the Global Context (AAS 210) does not satisfy the global studies intensive requirement and, appropriately, does not bare the G designation. A list of possible courses that may be offered with this designation can be seen here.

Information Literacy (1 course; or 3 credits)
Students must complete a course that exposes them to discipline specific skills to locate, analyze, evaluate, and use information. Such courses would include instruction in the use of sources and related technologies, interpretive and critical reading skills, and analytical and critical thinking skills. It is encouraged that students complete Critical Thinking HPH 110 prior to enrolling in information literacy (I) intensive courses. A list of possible courses that may be offered with this designation can be seen here.

The content of this webpage was made possible through Title III funding. Last updated 1/3/2010.