General Education at Western Washington University

ACC - Faculty Senate Resources

Overview of the new GUR program
Course Approval Forms

Course Criteria & Development

First-year Experience
Quantitative & Symbolic Reasoning
Second Writing

Learning Outcomes & Assessment Resources

National Teaching & Learning Forum: Assessment & General Education
QSR working group learning outcomes document
(PDF document*)
Student Learning Outcomes
(CII website)
Writing Instruction Support

Background Resources

Gen Ed Task Force Mission & Reports
QUE Report

*Reports in PDF format require the free Adobe reader.

General Education Requirements Approved by Academic Coordinating Commission (ACC)

Below is a summary document from the Faculty Senate website which outlines the general education requirements that were approved by the Academic Coordinating Commission on April 27, 2004.

GUR Requirements

ACC moved that the following GUR recommendations "be approved as its most current version"

(Unanimously approved on April 27, 2004)

To be implemented Fall 2005

Existing model to be replaced

Humanities, Social Sciences, Natural Sciences (HSSNS)

Characterized in terms of numbers of courses, with credit minimums.

Humanities –  3 courses, minimum 12 CR, from  2 different departments.

Social Sciences – 3 courses, minimum 12 CR, from  2 different depts.

Natural Sciences -  Option 1 remains unchanged.

Option IIA reduced by one course now reads:  "Choose one course from two of the following four areas", and Option IIB will read "Choose one additional course from a third area in A or one of the following."  An approved sequence may be substituted in any of these three areas. 

Students choose courses from 3 areas:

Humanities –
20 credits

Social Sciences –
17 credits

Natural Sciences – (option 1 or 2)
12-15 credits

(Total: 49-52 credits)


Communication/Writing (COMM)

Communication:  Students must satisfy Block A and one course from either Block B or Block C.

Block A: This will remain the same as current Block A.

Block B: This will remain essentially the same as it is, though some writing courses may be moved to Block C.

Block C:  This is a new area devoted to second-year writing courses. Block C may become a standalone requirement, that is, students would be required to satisfy all three blocks of the Communication requirement.

Called "Communication" requirement

Students must take English 101, and an additional Comm course

(Total: 7-9 Credits)

Comparative Gender & Multi-Cultural Studies (CGM) 

CGM remains standalone category.

Students choose two courses, one from a list of courses with a global perspective, one from a list of courses with a more domestic perspective.  The lists and a more detailed description of the global/domestic distinction will be left to the GER Committee.   Total – 2 courses from 2 distinct areas.  GCM is fulfilled in Humanities, Social Sciences,  Natural  Science, and courses designated as CGM.

Students must take 2-3 courses from a CGM-section in their distribution requirements.


(TOTAL: min. of 8 CREDITS)

Quantitative and Symbolic Reasoning (QSR)

Renamed "Quantitative and Symbolic Reasoning" (QSR)

Students may choose ONE of the following:

Complete both Math 107 and Math 112, or

Complete or test out of either May 107 or Math 112, and

Complete one additional course from the QSR list.

The QSR list currently consists of all Mathematics courses above Math 112, Philosophy 102, Computer Science 140, and Computer Science 145.  Departments will be invited to make proposals for further courses on the QSR list and a mechanism for determining what it takes to "test out" of Math 107 or Math 112 will have to be established.

Called "Mathematics" requirement. Students must take a minimum of one math class. Depending on course combinations and major, more courses might be required.


First-year Experience (FYE)

We will endeavor to establish a number of courses that will provide freshmen with a comparatively small class of academic merit which will also provide an introduction to the University and academic life.  Some of these will be altogether new courses, some of them will be special offerings of existing courses.  These courses will not be required, but many of them will contribute towards satisfaction of existing GUR requirements, e.g., an offering of Liberal Studies 121 limited to 25 students available to freshmen only.  Some such courses may not satisfy GUR requirements but offers some appeal as attractive electives.  Should resources become available and these offerings be deemed to be of great value, we may require such a course of every freshman.


Creative Experience (CE)

The ACC elected to postpone proposing action on the "Creative Experience" requirement on the grounds that the idea was insufficiently defined, and requires research and discussion.   The future ACC is invited to revisit the matter.


Western Washington University

©2005 Center for Instructional Innovation, Western Washington University
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