The University Curriculum
T he University curriculum is composed of a diverse set of academic offerings and requirements, each designed to build high-quality learning environments both in and outside of the classroom.
Curricular development and improvement, a continuous responsibility of the University’s faculty, is the primary function of the Academic Affairs sector administered by the Office of the Provost.
A baccalaureate education exposes students to a diverse array of academic areas. Our undergraduate program includes requirements and electives to enhance intellectual capabilities and stimulate intellectual curiosity.
In addition to completing course work for a specific major, students must complete an extensive general education program to sharpen writing, speaking, computation, and critical thinking skills needed to ensure knowledge of the sciences, humanities, fine arts, and social sciences–the basic subject areas upon which all academic endeavors are based. Improved understanding of ethnic minorities, broader knowledge of non-western cultures, and an understanding of United States history, constitution, and American ideals are further goals of the undergraduate education program. This diverse curriculum is designed to stimulate a lifelong interest in learning.
Built on the foundation of the baccalaureate, graduate education offers the master’s degree to students who successfully complete a program of advanced study, scholarly investigation, and research in a specific academic field. While the acquisition of knowledge is a major task of undergraduate education, the utilization, synthesis, and advancement of knowledge are the major goals of graduate study.
Through a coherent pattern of courses, graduate students develop research methods appropriate to their discipline and culminate their studies with a thesis, project, or comprehensive examination. Students who have earned the master’s degree have acquired sufficient mastery of a discipline for further study in a doctoral program and/or for significant professional careers in industry, education, research, government, or private organizations.
The Colleges, Schools, and Departments
Within Academic Affairs, subject disciplines are grouped into various administrative units based on commonality of the curriculum. There are seven colleges, each representing a major segment of the academic community and administered by a dean; and two interdisciplinary units: Undergraduate Education and the School of Graduate, International, and Interdisciplinary Studies. Within the colleges are individual departments that define the specific disciplines and several schools that either link together departments (Schools of the Arts, Communication, Education, and Engineering) or operate in lieu of a department (Schools of Nursing and Agriculture).
The colleges of the University are organized into two broad categories: liberal arts and sciences, and professional studies. In the following information, these two categories are used to define the colleges, schools, and departments that comprise the administrative structure of Academic Affairs.
The Colleges of Liberal Arts and Sciences
Liberal arts courses constitute the very heart of a university education. Historically, universities have grown up around the liberal arts–the arts and humanities, the natural sciences, and the social sciences. These disciplines provide a foundation learning experience for all college students, whatever their interests or career aspirations.
The General Education program draws nearly its entire curriculum from the liberal arts, and many professional programs depend heavily on liberal arts prerequisites for their own majors. Liberal arts majors offer a solid education for responsible contributions to a complex, modern world; equip students to reason, write, and communicate well; immerse them in moral and humane sensibilities; and bring them into intelligent and thoughtful contact with their physical and social worlds and with themselves. While many liberal arts majors lead to specific careers, all provide an education which promises value throughout life.
The College of Behavioral and Social Sciences
Departments and programs in Anthropology, Child Development, Economics, Geography and Planning, Health and Community Services, Political Science, Psychology, Social Science, Sociology, and Social Work.
The College of Humanities and Fine Arts
The School of the Arts with departments in Art and Art History, Music, and Theatre Arts. Additional programs and departments in American Studies, English, English as a Foreign Language, History, Humanities, Foreign Languages and Literatures, Philosophy, and Religious Studies.
The College of Natural Sciences
The School of Nursing. Additional departments and programs in Biological Sciences, Chemistry, Geosciences, Mathematics and Statistics, Microbiology, Nutrition and Food Science, and Physics.
The Colleges of Professional Studies
The professional colleges within the University provide a career emphasis built upon a strong liberal arts background. The courses of study include Agriculture, Business, Communication, Education, Engineering, Computer Science, and Construction Management. Students may select career options from a variety of specialties.
The professional programs emphasize concepts fundamental to both current and future practice in the selected field. Global acculturation taking place in all fields and rapid development of economic, managerial, and technological processes require professional studies to provide a lifelong learning approach.
The programs stress development of communication and analytical skills in preparation for careers in corporations, government agencies, or private practice. Education in the professional fields beyond graduation continues to be a hallmark of our modern society; our professional studies curriculum provides a broadly based program of study that places a premium upon the ability for future growth of the individual and an understanding of the place of the professional in a civilized and complex world.
The College of Agriculture
Programs in Agriscience and Education, Animal Science, Plant Science, Land Stewardship, and Agricultural Business.
The College of Business
Programs in Professional Accounting, Finance, Human Resource Management, Management, Marketing, Accounting Information Systems, Management Information Systems, and Supply Chain Management Systems.
The College of Communication and Education
The School of Communication includes Departments of Communication Arts and Sciences, Communication Design, and Journalism, and programs in Graphic Design, Information Systems, Instructional Technology, Media Arts, Speech Pathology and Audiology, News-Editorial, Public Relations, Organizational and Speech Communications.
The School of Education, includes Teacher Education, Bilingual Education, Mini-Corps, Upward Bound, the Teacher Diversity Program and the Departments of Education and Professional Studies in Education. The College also includes the Departments of Physical Education and Exercise Science, and Recreation and Parks Management.
The College of Engineering, Computer Science, and Construction Management
Departments and programs in Computer Engineering, Computer Science, Civil Engineering, Electrical/Electronic Engineering, Mechatronic Engineering, Mechanical Engineering and Manufacturing Technology, and Construction Management.
Interdisciplinary programs use curriculum and faculty from numerous colleges and disciplines and do not logically fit within any single academic area. These include:
The School of Graduate, International, and Interdisciplinary Studies
The School’s Office of Graduate Studies administers post-baccalaureate programs, including master’s degrees and options in thirty-six disciplinary programs and the Master of Arts or Science in Interdisciplinary Studies. The school also administers international academic programs and international student services, Leadership Studies, Multicultural and Gender Studies, Special Major, and Experiential Education and Internship Office.
In conjunction with the colleges, schools, and departments, the Graduate School encourages all forms of postbaccalaureate education and the production, dissemination, and application of new knowledge. Further, the Graduate School administers programs in African Studies, Asian Studies, European Studies, Latin American Studies, Middle Eastern Studies, and Self-Instruction Languages, as well as administration of exchange programs.
Special Undergraduate Programs and Research
Under the auspices of the Office of the Provost, the following programs can be found: General Education, General Education Courselink, General Studies Thematic, and University Honors. The Provost also oversees sponsored projects, grants, and contract activities which facilitate faculty development, faculty and student research, scholarship and creative activity.