General Education Requirements

General Education (GE) is a portion of your college curriculum which allows you to explore a variety of academic disciplines in addition to your major coursework. GE will help you to see your major's place in your total education by showing you that:

  1. knowledge is not isolated
  2. what you know of one subject is related to what you know of another
  3. there is always more to know
  4. what you know affects the way you live. 

General Education Planning Sheet

The GE Planning Sheet lists all GE requirements, including the Upper Division Pathways. It is intended to help you keep track of what requirements you have completed and what you have remaining.

Starting in fall 2012 semester, new freshman can view the video below for a thorough explanation of the GE requirements. Transfer or continuing Chico State students should meet with an Academic Advisor for clarification on your remaining GE coursework.

General Education Structure

Foundation (18 Units)

  • Area A: Foundation (grades of C- or better required in foundation courses)
    • Oral Communication
    • Written Communication
    • Critical Thinking
    • Quantitative Reasoning
  • Area B: Physical and Life Sciences

American Institutions (6 Units)

  • U.S. History
  • U.S. Constitution and California State and Local Government

Lower Division Breadth Pathways (15 Units)

  • Area C: Arts and Humanities
  • Area D: Individual & Society, and Societal Institutions
  • Area E: Learning for Life

Upper Division Pathways (9 Units)

All three courses must be selected from within the same pathway.

  • Upper Division Natural Sciences
  • Upper Division Arts/Humanities
  • Upper Division Social Sciences

Pathway Minors

You have the ability to earn an interdisciplinary Pathway Minor while completing your General Education. You must complete 18 units within one Pathway, including 9 units of upper division. The Breadth Pathways include:

  • Diversity Studies
  • Ethics, Justice, and Policy Studies
  • Food Studies
  • Gender and Sexuality Studies
  • Global Development Studies
  • Great Books and Ideas
  • Health and Wellness
  • International Studies
  • Science, Technology, and Values
  • Sustainability

Additional Requirements


While diversity requirements are not part of your GE requirements, they are a graduation requirement and can be fulfilled or double-counted within GE.

  • United States Diversity (USD)
  • Global Cultures (GC)

Writing Intensive

You must complete a minimum of 4 Writing Intensive (WI) courses, one will be fulfilled by your Written Communication course and one will be fulfilled by your Capstone course. Consult your DPR for your specific WI course requirements. View courses approved as Writing Intensive Substitutions.


You must select a Capstone (C) course within your upper-division Pathway coursework, or substitute an approved Major Capstone course.

Additional Resources