General Education Requirements

The University Senate enacted these requirements to ensure that all University of Connecticut undergraduate students become articulate and acquire intellectual breadth and versatility, critical judgment, moral sensitivity, awareness of their era and society, consciousness of the diversity of human culture and experience, and a working understanding of the processes by which they can continue to acquire and use knowledge. It is vital to the accomplishment of the University’s mission that a balance between professional and general education be established and maintained in which each is complementary to and compatible with the other.*

Every student must meet a set of core requirements to earn a baccalaureate degree, though some schools and colleges may add to the requirements listed here. To avoid delaying the progress of their degree, students should always consult the requirements listed for their particular school or college before registering. The school or college may refer the student to these General Education Requirements when the requirements and choices duplicate those listed here.

* Undergraduate students with Bachelor’s degrees from regionally accredited institutions are exempt from the University General Education Requirements but not the 2000-level and above W course within the major nor any additional general education requirements of a School/College.

Content Areas

Content Area Requirements
One 6 credits
Two 6 credits
Three 6-7 credits
Four 6 credits

The courses fulfilling the Content Areas One, Two and Three requirements must be drawn from at least six different subjects as designated by the subject letter code (e.g., ANTH or PVS). The courses within each of these Content Areas must be from two different subjects. Content Area courses may be counted toward the major.**

Normally, the six credits required as a minimum for each Content Area will be met by two three-credit courses. However, in Content Area One and Content Area Four (including Content Area Four International), repeatable one-credit courses may be included. Students may use no more than three credits of such courses to meet the requirement.

Students must pass at least seven content area courses with at least three credits each (with the exception noted above), amounting to a total of at least 21 credits.

In Content Area Three, one of the courses must be a laboratory course of four or more credits. However, this laboratory requirement is waived for students who have passed a hands-on laboratory science course in the biological and/or physical sciences.

In Content Area Four, at least three credits shall address issues of diversity and/or multiculturalism outside of the United States.

For all Content Areas, there can be multiple designations. An individual course may be approved for and count for one, two, or three Content Areas if one of the three is Content Area 4.

** A student will be permitted to use two courses from the same department within Content Areas One through Three if one of those courses is cross-listed in another subject letter code not otherwise used to meet this requirement.

List of Content Area Courses

New Content Area courses are added to the Student Administration System on an ongoing basis. For the most current list of active Content Area courses, please see our List of All Content Area Courses. This report refreshes automatically every night.

Content Area 1: Arts and Humanities

Arts and Humanities courses provide a broad vision of artistic and humanist themes. These courses enable students themselves to study and understand the artistic, cultural and historical processes of humanity. They encourage students to explore their own traditions and their places within the larger world so that they, as informed citizens, may participate more fully in the rich diversity of human languages and cultures.

Content Area 2: Social Sciences

The social sciences examine how individuals, groups, institutions, and societies behave and influence one another and the natural environment. Courses in this group enable students to analyze and understand interactions of the numerous social factors that influence behavior at the individual, cultural, societal, national, or international level. They use the methods and theories of social science inquiry to develop critical thought about current social issues and problems.

Content Area 3: Science and Technology

These courses acquaint students with scientific thought, observation, experimentation, and formal hypothesis testing, and enable students to consider the impact that developments in science and technology have on the nature and quality of life. Knowledge of the basic vocabulary of science and technology is a prerequisite for informed assessments of the physical universe and of technological developments.

Content Area 3: Science and Technology – Laboratory Courses

These courses acquaint students with scientific thought, observation, experimentation, and formal hypothesis testing, and enable students to consider the impact that developments in science and technology have on the nature and quality of life. Knowledge of the basic vocabulary of science and technology is a prerequisite for informed assessments of the physical universe and of technological developments.

Content Area 4: Diversity and Multiculturalism

In this interconnected global community, individuals of any profession need to be able to understand, appreciate, and function in cultures other than their own. Diversity and multiculturalism in the university curriculum contribute to this essential aspect of education by bringing to the fore the historical truths about different cultural perspectives, especially those of groups that traditionally have been under-represented. These groups might be characterized by such features as race, ethnicity, gender, sexual identities, political systems, or religious traditions, or by persons with disabilities. By studying the ideas, history, values, and creative expressions of diverse groups, students gain appreciation for differences as well as commonalities among people.

Content Area 4: Diversity and Multiculturalism – International

In this interconnected global community, individuals of any profession need to be able to understand, appreciate, and function in cultures other than their own. Diversity and multiculturalism in the university curriculum contribute to this essential aspect of education by bringing to the fore the historical truths about different cultural perspectives, especially those of groups that traditionally have been under-represented. These groups might be characterized by such features as race, ethnicity, gender, sexual identities, political systems, or religious traditions, or by persons with disabilities. By studying the ideas, history, values, and creative expressions of diverse groups, students gain appreciation for differences as well as commonalities among people.

Competencies

University of Connecticut undergraduates need to demonstrate competency in four fundamental areas: information literacy, quantitative skills, second language proficiency and writing. The development of these competencies involves two parts: one establishing entry-level expectations and the second establishing graduation expectations. The entry-level expectations apply to all incoming students. The exit expectations may vary for different major fields of study.

Information Literacy Competency

Information literacy involves a general understanding of how information is created, disseminated and organized, and an ability to access, evaluate, synthesize and incorporate information into written, oral, or media presentations. Basic information literacy is taught to all freshmen as an integral part of ENGL 1010/1011, in collaboration with the staff of the University Libraries. Each major program has considered the information literacy competencies required of its graduates and built those expectations into the upper-level research and writing requirements in the major. Further details are given under the description of each major elsewhere in this catalog.

Quantitative (Q) Competency

All students must pass two Q courses, which may also satisfy Content Area requirements. One Q course must be from Mathematics or Statistics. Students should discuss with their advisor how best to satisfy these requirements based on their background, prior course preparation and career aspirations. Students whose high school algebra needs strengthening should be encouraged to complete MATH 1011Q: Introductory College Algebra and Mathematical Modeling, as preparation for other Q courses. To receive credit for MATH 1011Q, it must be taken before successful completion of another Q course. In some cases, advisors may recommend postponing registration in a Q course until after the student has completed a semester of course work at the University.

Second Language Competency

A student meets the minimum requirement if admitted to the University with three years of a single foreign language in high school, or the equivalent. When the years of study have been split between high school and earlier grades, the requirement is met if the student has successfully completed the third-year high school level course. With anything less than that, the student must pass the second semester course in the first year sequence of college level study in a single language.

Writing (W) Competency

All students must take either ENGL 1010 or 1011. Students passing ENGL 2011 are considered to have met the ENGL 1010 or 1011 requirement. Additionally, all students must take two writing-intensive (W) courses, which may also satisfy Content Area requirements. One of these must be at the 2000-level and associated with the student’s major. Approved courses for each major are listed in their sections of this catalog. (Note: ENGL 1010 or 1011 is a prerequisite to all writing-intensive courses).

Environmental Literacy

Students must pass at least one course of at least three credits in Environmental Literacy. Environmental Literacy courses are designated for this purpose as E courses. Environmental Literacy courses may be counted towards the major.