Department of Liberal Arts & Sciences

College-Wide General Education Requirements for Undergraduate Degree Programs

All undergraduate degree programs at the College have a 30-credit general education requirement. Each degree program may have additional general education requirements on top of this basic requirement.

The College’s general education curriculum is a broad, coherent set of non-specialized courses that serve two purposes: (1) to ensure that students have a certain breadth of knowledge that extends beyond their major or specialization, and (2) to ensure that students develop the basic qualities and competencies that support continued growth and achievement in their careers and professions as well as in their lives more generally.

Before being awarded a degree, all baccalaureate-seeking students are expected to demonstrate an appropriate level of competence in the following areas:

  1. Written and Oral Communication: ability to express ideas and develop arguments clearly and effectively through writing, and ability to comprehend and speak with precision and clarity.
  2. Critical and Creative Thinking: ability to analyze and evaluate insightfully and in depth, and ability to create ideas and contribute knowledge.
  3. Information Literacy and Technological Competency: ability to identify, retrieve, evaluate, organize, cite, and use a range of resources for independent learning and problem solving.
  4. Quantitative and Scientific Reasoning: ability to apply basic quantitative and scientific concepts to analyze issues and answer questions germane to the field.
  5. Cross-Cultural Communication: proficiency in a language other than English and knowledge of the comparative heritage and culture of both Western and non-Western civilizations.
  6. Global Awareness: ability to form and express individual views on global, economic, social, political, and cultural issues.
  7. Artistic Awareness: appreciation and understanding of the role and value of the arts in society.
  8. Moral Awareness: ability to reflect on personal responsibilities as well as to apply principles of responsible citizenship to others.

The table below details the College-wide general education requirements for undergraduate programs. Unless otherwise noted, students may fulfill each requirement via course(s) of their choosing, drawn from a pool of qualifying courses. For each requirement, the courses that qualify are those that have the corresponding “GenEd tag.”

Undergraduate Degree General Education Requirements

GenEd Area Credits GenEd Tag
College Core (10 credits)
LAS100 College Success 1 CORE
LAS103A&B Effective English 3 CORE
World civilizations courses 6 CIV
Breadth Distribution (12 credits)
Humanities course 3 HUM
Modern world affairs course 3 MWA
Quantitative reasoning course 3 QR
Scientific reasoning course 3 SR
World Languages (8 credits)
Chinese language and literature courses 8* LANG

*To fulfill the world languages requirement, students in the BFA and BM programs currently take 8 credits in Chinese language and literature courses. The LAS Department has developed systematic Chinese Language and Culture (CLC) courses for this purpose. These courses offer various levels of modern Mandarin Chinese, from beginning to advanced, for students learning Chinese as a second language. Courses in classical Chinese and literature are available for advanced learners. Prior knowledge of Chinese is not necessary. All students taking Chinese courses in CLC must be placed in an appropriate-level course based on a placement test. In addition to earning the required credits in Chinese language and literature, students must reach a proficiency level of Elementary Chinese II or higher to graduate.

The following table lists the courses that satisfy the general education requirements and indicates, for each course, which of the general education requirements the course satisfies. In some cases a course qualifies for more than one requirement, but a student may use each course towards only one requirement. For example, LAS120 Mathematics in Applied Context can fulfill either the Quantitative Reasoning (QR) or Scientific Reasoning (SR) requirement, not both.

General Education Courses

Course Code Course Title Credits GenEd Tag
LAS001A ESL A 0
LAS001B ESL B 0
LAS002A Introduction to College English A 0
LAS002B Introduction to College English B 0
LAS003A ESL Integrated Skills for College A 0
LAS003B ESL Integrated Skills for College B 0
LAS100 College Success 1 CORE
LAS103A Effective English A 1.5 CORE
LAS103B Effective English B 1.5 CORE
LAS110A Western Civilization A 1.5 CIV
LAS110B Western Civilization B 1.5 CIV
CLC131A Chinese Civilization A 1.5 CIV
CLC131B Chinese Civilization B 1.5 CIV
LAS204A Public Speaking A 1.5 HUM
LAS204B Public Speaking B 1.5 HUM
LAS303A Masterpieces of World Literature A 1.5 HUM
LAS303B Masterpieces of World Literature B 1.5 HUM
CLC331A Topics in Chinese History A 1.5 HUM, SR
CLC331B Topics in Chinese History B 1.5 HUM, SR
LAS232A The Making of the Modern World A 1.5 MWA
LAS232B The Making of the Modern World B 1.5 MWA
LAS120A Mathematics in Applied Context A 1.5 QR, SR
LAS120B Mathematics in Applied Context B 1.5 QR, SR
LAS220A Calculus A 1.5 QR, SR
LAS220B Calculus B 1.5 QR, SR
CLC101A Beginning Chinese I-A 2 LANG
CLC101B Beginning Chinese I-B 2 LANG
CLC102A Beginning Chinese II-A 2 LANG
CLC102B Beginning Chinese II-B 2 LANG
CLC111A Elementary Chinese I-A 2 LANG
CLC111B Elementary Chinese I-B 2 LANG
CLC112A Elementary Chinese II-A 2 LANG
CLC112B Elementary Chinese II-B 2 LANG
CLC211A Intermediate Chinese I-A 2 LANG
CLC211B Intermediate Chinese I-B 2 LANG
CLC212A Intermediate Chinese II-A 2 LANG
CLC311A Advanced Chinese I-A 2 LANG
CLC311B Advanced Chinese I-B 2 LANG
CLC312A Advanced Chinese II-A 2 LANG
CLC312B Advanced Chinese II-B 2 LANG
CLC411A Classical Chinese I-A 2 LANG
CLC411B Classical Chinese I-B 2 LANG
CLC412A Classical Chinese II-A 2 LANG
CLC412B Classical Chinese II-B 2 LANG
CLC421A Chinese Language Arts I-A 2 LANG
CLC421B Chinese Language Arts I-B 2 LANG
CLC422A Chinese Language Arts II-A 2 LANG
CLC422B Chinese Language Arts II-B 2 LANG
CLC423A Chinese Language Arts III-A 2 LANG
CLC423B Chinese Language Arts III-B 2 LANG
CLC424A Chinese Language Arts IV-A 2 LANG
CLC424B Chinese Language Arts IV-B 2 LANG
CLC431A Chinese Literature I-A 2 LANG
CLC431B Chinese Literature I-B 2 LANG
CLC432A Chinese Literature II-A 2 LANG
CLC432B Chinese Literature II-B 2 LANG
LAS230 Topics in the Arts and Sciences 1-4 Depends on topic
LAS350 Independent Study in Arts and Sciences 1-4 Depends on topic

The College values artistic awareness, and regards it as an essential component for all of the College’s baccalaureate programs. Currently, this College-wide general education component is addressed via program design; each undergraduate degree program includes at least 3 credits of coursework that serves to increase artistic awareness.