General Studies

General Studies Learning Outcomes

PROGRAM-LEVEL OUTCOMES
Across the range of disciplines and courses offered, the General Studies Program is designed to develop and demonstrate the following abilities:

  1. Evaluate information appropriate to the task.
  2. Apply principles of critical thinking to demonstrate integrative learning.
  3. Communicate effectively in spoken form.
  4. Communicate effectively in written form.
  5. Analyze cultural issues within a global context.
  6. Evaluate in context significant concepts relating to democracy.

May 2011 - program-level outcomes added to this page
April 2011 - Democracy outcomes revised, as approved by General Studies Council at April 28, 2011 meeting
August 2010 - created this page with newly approved outcomes duplicated from GS section of Undergraduate Catalog

I. Foundational Core

  • WRITTEN COMMUNICATION
    The courses in this category are designed to develop and demonstrate the following abilities:
    1. Discern a writer’s argument or purpose.
    2. Use appropriate sources responsibly.
    3. Use context-appropriate conventions of written English.
    4. Form and support a coherent position on an issue.
    5. Write in a manner appropriate to the audience and context.
  • MATH
    The courses in this category are designed to develop and demonstrate the following abilities:
    1. Apply mathematical logic to solve equations.
    2. Describe problems using mathematical language.
    3. Solve problems given in mathematical language using mathematical or statistical tools.
    4. Interpret numerical data or graphical information using mathematical concepts and methods.
    5. Construct logical arguments using mathematical language and concepts.
    6. Use mathematical software effectively.
  • ORAL COMMUNICATION
    The courses in this category are designed to develop and demonstrate the following abilities:
    1. Evaluate appropriate sources.
    2. Utilize effective verbal and non-verbal expressions.
    3. Deliver effective speeches appropriate to the context.
    4. Orally present a coherent position on an issue.
    5. Assess oral argumentation as a critical consumer.
  • DEMOCRACY IN PERSPECTIVE
    The courses in this category are designed to develop and demonstrate the following abilities:
    1. Explain the roles that democratic concepts, including individual rights, play in a just democracy.
    2. Analyze how citizens engage in democracy.
    3. Evaluate democratic practices across different contexts (such as settings, time, socioeconomic conditions, cultures, and political boundaries).

II. Portal Course

The courses in this category are designed to develop and demonstrate the following abilities:

  1. Analyze critical issues confronting the individual and society, including a global context.
  2. Interpret an argument through engaged discourse within the discipline.
  3. Construct a cogent argument pertaining to the course topic.

III. Distribution

  • AESTHETICS
    The courses in this category are designed to develop and demonstrate the following abilities:
    1. Articulate the relevance of the Aesthetics course to their general education.
    2. Explain the significance of a work of art within its context (i.e. cultural, historical).
    3. Identify the structure of a work of art by describing its elements.
    4. Interpret a work of art using concepts appropriate to its medium.
    5. Distinguish between works of art from various time periods and cultures.
  • HUMANITIES
    The courses in this category are designed to develop and demonstrate the following abilities:
    1. Articulate the relevance of the Humanities course to their general education.
    2. Analyze primary sources using methodologies appropriate to disciplines in the Humanities.
    3. Create coherent positions based on the interpretation of primary sources.
    4. Communicate effectively using the modes of discourse appropriate to the discipline.
    5. Evaluate primary sources in cultural, historical, literary, or philosophical contexts.
  • SOCIAL SCIENCES
    The courses in this category are designed to develop and demonstrate the following abilities:
    1. Articulate the relevance of the Social Science course to their general education.
    2. Describe basic concepts and methods used in a social science discipline.
    3. Demonstrate how basic concepts and methods from a social science discipline explain individual or group behavior.
    4. Evaluate the connection between social science research and social or political policy.
    5. Apply concepts and methods from a social science discipline to social science research.
  • NATURAL SCIENCES
    The courses in this category are designed to develop and demonstrate the following abilities:
    1. Articulate the relevance of the Natural Science course to their general education.
    2. Explain how knowledge of natural science is applicable to their lives.
    3. Apply appropriate scientific methodology within one of the natural sciences.
    4. Evaluate the validity and limitations of scientific theories and claims.
    5. (Required for lab courses only) Analyze scientific data acquired through laboratory experiences in one of the natural sciences.
  • ANALYTICAL & QUANTITATIVE THOUGHT
    The courses in this category are designed to develop and demonstrate the following abilities:
    1. Articulate the relevance of the Analytical & Quantitative Thought course to their general education.
    2. Express formal relationships using various forms of analytical reasoning.
    3. Define problems using techniques appropriate to the discipline.
    4. Solve problems using techniques appropriate to the discipline.
    5. Draw appropriate inferences from data in various forms.
    6. Evaluate analytical results for reasonableness.
  • WELLNESS
    The courses in this category are designed to develop and demonstrate the following abilities:
    1. Articulate the relevance of the Wellness course to their general education.
    2. Describe components of wellness.
    3. Recognize the potential consequences of personal choices.
    4. Analyze the roles of society in wellness promotion.
    5. Develop an action strategy for wellness.

IV. Capstone Course

The courses in this category are designed to develop and demonstrate the following abilities:

  1. Evaluate information from more than one academic discipline.
  2. Formulate logical connections between disciplines as they relate to the topic.
  3. Employ the approach of more than one academic discipline in completing a Capstone project.
  4. Synthesize knowledge related to the topic in completing a Capstone project.
  5. Communication effectively in the medium chosen for the Capstone project.