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General Education FAQ

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Answers to your frequently asked questions on General Education.

Why do I have to fulfill General Education Requirements?

The liberal arts portion of your degree ensures that you have some exposure to the natural sciences, social sciences, arts and letters, health and lifetime wellness, and the nature of university studies. This is part of becoming an informed citizen, with a broad understanding of different disciplines.

What are the distributive areas to be covered?

If you matriculated in Fall 2016 or after, you need 12 credits each in the natural sciences, social sciences, and arts and letters. Four areas in each category must be covered. You also need 3 credits in English Composition, 3 credits in Health Promotion and Lifetime Wellness, and 3 credits of First Year Experience. That’s a total of 45 credits.

Approved General Education courses are listed in the undergraduate catalog. You should consult with your advisor to see if your department has specific requirements in these areas. For first-year entering students, the First Year Experience should be completed in the first year; composition in the first 45 credits; and the Wellness class in the first 60 credits.

What other requirements must be fulfilled?

There are 6 standards embedded throughout the General Education curriculum designed to improve competencies and broaden perspectives. The six standards are the following: Global Diversity and Citizenship, Critical Thinking, Communication, Information Literacy and Technology, Scientific Standard, Artistic Expression. Level II writing, and Level III writing are also required.

A course that meets one or more of the standards is identified in the undergraduate catalog following the description of the course.

How can I tell which GE requirements I’ve fulfilled and which I have left?

Your degree audit, which can be accessed on myESU, is the best way to determine the status of your General Education requirements. You can also view any comments made by your advisor or Enrollment Services at the bottom of the degree audit in the exceptions and notes sections.

Can a single course fulfill multiple requirements simultaneously?

Yes:

  • A course can count in a distributive area and also as a major requirement.
  • One course may count for one or more attributes if it has been approved for more than one attribute.
  • Writing Level II and Writing III courses can be counted as fulfilling both GE and major requirements simultaneously.

Please note that you will receive credits for a course only once even though it may appear multiple times on the Degree Audit.