General Education Committee Minutes, 9/2/08

Members present: J. Edwards, S. Hines, D. MacDonald D. Morton, D. Potts, M. Ramey, K. Shanley, D. Sloan, T. Thibeau

Members absent: F. Rosenzweig

Guest: G. Weix - ASCRC Chair


The meeting was called to order at 3:10 pm. 


ASCRC Chair Weix encouraged members to serve as chair.  There is a lot of work to be done this year, but is confident that it can be accomplished by honoring the work of the subcommittees.

Committee members introduced themselves.

The general education form was revised slightly by ECOS at the end of spring semester.   

Business Items:

  • Professors Hines and MacDonald agreed to serve as co-chairs.
  • The following subcommittee Chairs have been confirmed.  All members of the General Education Committee should serve on a subcommittee.  Subcommittee chairs that are not members of the committee will be invited to the meetings during general education course review.

Group II:  Mathematics

Dave Patterson

Group III:a Modern & Classical Languages

Robert Acker

Group IIIb Symbolic Systems

Don Morton
Debbie Sloan (member)
Tully Thibeau (member)

Group IV:  Expressive Arts

Maxine Ramy

Group V: Literary and Artistic Studies

Frank Rosenzweig (absent)

Group VI: Historical and Cultural Studies

Wade Davies

Group VII:  Social Sciences

Douglas MacDonald

Group VIII:  Ethics and Human Values

Group IX: American and European

Jim Lopach

Group X: Indigenous and Global

Kate Shanley
Julie Edwards (member)

Group XI:  Natural Sciences

Don Potts

Subcommittee chairs should work to confirm membership as soon as possible. Often visits in person are more persuasive than email messages. 

  • Members' schedules were collected and reviewed.  A possible meeting day / time is Friday from 9-10.  The next meeting will not be until after the deadline when more is known about the number of forms submitted.
  • There has been some concerns regarding the review of the symbolic systems courses.  The committee discussed the issues.  Camie will draft a deadline reminder communication (appended below) that addresses the confusion and send it to members to review.  It will be sent to all faculty on Friday. 
  • Another issue that will need to be addressed is how international students satisfy the Modern and Classical Language requirement.  Professor Stan Rose in Modern and Classical Languages works with International Students to satisfy the requirement.  Camie will check with him regarding the policy / procedure.
  • The review of general education courses will be similar to the current procedure followed by ASCRC and Graduate Council for curriculum review.  The forms will be available online for subcommittees to review.  The subcommittee chair will coordinate the efforts of the members.  It often works well to divide the work so that each form is reviewed by 2 or 3 members.  The members communicate via email any concerns and the subcommittee chair follows-up with the requester.  Issues that are not resolved can are brought to the full committee.  Dates will be assigned for subcommittee chairs to present a list of approved courses and problems for the committee to consider.

The meeting was adjourned at 4:20 p.m.

To:       All Faculty     

From:  General Education Committee

Date:  September 5, 2008

Re:      Deadline for General Education Course Review

Over the past several years faculty committees have been working to review and revise the general education program.  The framework and criteria / learning goals have been updated and approved by the Faculty Senate.  Departments need to submit all courses, except writing courses to be considered under the new general education guidelines by September 26, 2008.  Current general education courses that do not apply for general education status under the new guidelines will lose their designation. Revised guidelines for writing courses are currently under consideration and writing courses will be reviewed in the spring. 

The revised framework is below.  A noted difference is that students must complete the modern and classical language requirement unless their major requires a symbolic systems sequence.  This is a compromise to accommodate extended majors that cannot fit 10 credits of a language into their curriculum.  There are also two new categories: American and European Perspective and Indigenous and Global Perspective.

Department curriculum committees will need to evaluate their current general education offerings and submit completed forms for courses by September 26, 2008.  This is also the deadline for curriculum proposals.

For those majors that require symbolic systems courses, ASCRC will also need to review the catalog language that specifies the requirement.  In some cases this might require changes to the major's requirement catalog language on a program modification form, otherwise append the current existing catalog language to the general education form.  Departments that require a symbolic systems sequence offered by another department should contact the service department to assure the courses are being submitted for review.   The second course in a symbolic sequence should refer to the first course in the sequence as a prerequisite.

The revised criteria and learning goals for general education courses are available at:

The forms and additional instructions are available at:

General Education Framework


Group I:  English Writing Skills

  1. ENEX 101                                 
  2. One designated Writing Course (either lower division or upper division)             
  3. Take and pass the Writing Proficiency Assessment (WPA)       
  4. Upper-Division Writing Requirement (as specified by major department)



Group II:  Mathematics      



Group III: Modern and Classical Languages or Symbolic Systems          

A two semester language sequence is the default option (test out provisions apply).  Students may substitute a symbolic system sequence required by their major and approved by ASCRC.

0-10 or 3-6

Group IV:  Expressive Arts 


Group V: Literary and Artistic Studies     


Group VI: Historical and Cultural Studies


Group VII:  Social Sciences           


Group VIII:  Ethics and Human Values     


Group IX: American and European Perspectives


Group X: Indigenous and Global Perspectives 


Group XI:  Natural Sciences                                                                          

One course must include a laboratory experience.     




  • Some courses may satisfy both the "Writing Course" requirement (I.2) and one of the Groups IV through XI.
  • Some courses may satisfy both Group II and Group III Symbolic Systems.
  • Some courses may satisfy both Group IX and one of the Groups IV through VIII.
  • Some courses may satisfy both Group X and one of the Groups IV through VIII.
  • All General Education courses must be at least 3 credits, must be introductory and foundational, and have no more than one pre-requisite.  ASCRC may allow exceptions for upper-division courses, courses fewer than three credits, and for courses with more than one-prerequisite.