Welcome Message to Faculty

Dear Faculty Colleagues:

Welcome to the General Education home page. General Education (GE) is the contemporary label for what has characterized higher education for decades, if not centuries: a liberal education. While there are many approaches to understanding the role of GE in a student's university life, virtually all thinking about the issue focuses on those values of a liberal education widely held in the academy: open inquiry, academic freedom, and providing students with an understanding of, and familiarity with, the human condition, its many manifestations and creative products, and the wonder and order of the natural world. In addition, GE is seen as one of the primary means by which the university provides students with enduring skills they need for life-long success - as citizens and as productive members of society - skills in quantitative reasoning, critical thinking and written and oral communications.

In the period of 2005-2012, General Education underwent intensive review on our campus culminating in the design of the new General Education Pathways program, approved by the Academic Senate in Spring 2010 (see EM 10-01).   In 2010-11, faculty worked hard to take the ideas embedded in EM 10-01 and turn that into a viable curriculum.  That work included defining the intellectual themes of the Pathways, proposing and approving courses for the new program and many other tasks.

The result is a thoroughly re-visioned program that brings faculty together is interdisciplinary communities of practice and provides intellectually coherent learning communities designed to provide a meaningful academic experience for students.  The new program is managed by a faculty-led GE Curriculum Advisory Board, which includes representatives of all colleges and Pathway coordinators who ensure the intellectual coherence of the program, its smooth functioning and its ongoing assessment.

We invite you to explore the links on the GE website to get more information about the critically important role of the General Education Program in our students’ education and how we accomplish the goals of a liberal education on our campus.