Responsive controls for GenEd30

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The committee charged with maintaining the general education curriculum must ensure that students have a list of courses that maintain a balance across disciplines. The General Education Task Force suggests an initial limitation of four course offerings from each unit, as defined by the course rubric code, for example SOCY, to be included in the four areas of inquiry. Furthermore, we recommend that students be limited to two courses from each rubric, with the exception of UNIV where students are allowed three courses. We recognize these parameters as starting points to allow for responsible vetting of new courses under the GenEd30 framework and to allow space for units new to general education to develop course contributions. We recommend that the new standing committee evaluate new courses and adjust the aforementioned limits by reference to the following questions:

  • How many total new general education courses should be approved in any given year?
  • How many new general education courses should be approved in any given year from any particular department?
  • How many courses should be in the current GenEd30 list?
  • How many courses should be in each GenEd30 area of inquiry?
  • Should there be any limit on course capacity?
  • How should interdisciplinary courses be counted in the overall GenEd30?

General considerations that could give rise to controls are:

  • The areas of inquiry are designed to emphasize interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary approaches to common disciplinary questions. Therefore, the committee should strive to maintain disciplinary balance; no theme should be dominated by a single department.
  • However, the areas of inquiry should also maintain the integrity of disciplinary ways of knowing and seeing the world. Therefore, the committee should consult with the department when considering courses that bridge disciplines to ensure courses are taught by appropriate subject matter experts in the field.
  • The greater a department’s representation in the general education curricula, the more reluctant the committee should be to grant that department new courses or to grant it more or larger sections of an existing course.
  • Each department should be encouraged to have at least one general education course.