General Education Curriculum

The purpose of the general education requirement is to provide students with a wide range of knowledge. It also provides them with the skills and abilities to transform this knowledge into responsible and effective participation in society. General Education student learning outcomes are:

  1. To live, work, and provide leadership in a rapidly changing world
  2. To think critically and creatively
  3. To be effective at various modes of expression and communication
  4. To interact with and appreciate other cultures and traditions
  5. To take constructive action for a better society

Underlying the general education program are courses aimed at integrating diverse disciplinary perspectives, with an emphasis on comparative and international dimensions. Within each course, clearly identified objectives are specified as being relevant to the overall general education program and to the mission of a Soka education. The program is designed to have synergy with the rest of the curriculum and to introduce or reinforce themes, goals, and outcomes of the SUA experience without being repetitive.  

Specific courses within the general education curriculum are designed to meet one or more of the learning objectives outlined below. Together, these courses provide a broad academic foundation for future learning and for the practical skills and abilities students will need to become leaders and to succeed in society and in their chosen professions.   See also: Catalog

Development of skills and abilities

  • Clear and effective communication
  • Objective reasoning
  • Critical and creative thinking
  • Artistic expression
  • Mathematical competence
  • Information literacy
  • Ethical judgment
  • Civic engagement
  • Proficiency in a second language and culture
  • Health Awareness

Outline of Course Requirements

To satisfy the general education requirement, students are to take 21 credit-bearing courses
distributed as follows:

Core (2 courses)

  • The Enduring Questions of Humanity (first year)
  • The Enduring Questions in Contemporary Contexts (second year)

Communication and Inquiry (3 courses)

  • Communication Skills (first year)
  • Advanced Communication Skills (third year)
  • Modes of Inquiry (second year)

Modes of Inquiry student learning outcomes are:

  1. To understand the assumptions that underlie the various modes of inquiry used within and across disciplines
  2. To understand the assumptions that underlie the various modes of inquiry used within and across disciplines
  3. To understand that every mode of inquiry has its own strengths and limitations in the exploration of a given question or problem
  4. To be able to sustain a line of argument using one or more modes of inquiry
  5. To be able to articulate the commonalities and/or differences among various modes of inquiry

 Creative Arts (2 courses taken concurrently, any year) 

 
 Science and Mathematics (3 courses, any year, one from each area)

  • The Mathematical World
  • The Physical World
  • The Natural World


 Area and Comparative Studies (2 courses)

  • American Experience (1, second year)

American Experience learning outcomes are:  

  1. To develop a critical understanding of the social, political, cultural, and historical dimensions of the diversity of US experience
  2. To develop informed perspectives on US institutions and their role in local and global power relations
  3. To develop interpretive skills through close readings of texts across a variety of genres and media
  4. To develop written and oral communication skills
  • Pacific Basin (1, first year)

Pacific Basin student learning outcomes are:

  1. To understand the historical transformations that characterize the region since the first encounters with Europeans
  2. To develop a critical awareness of social, political, economic and cultural issues within the region over time
  3. To develop skills of oral and/or written expression
  4. To gain experience of interdisciplinary perspectives
  5. To gain critical skills for interpreting visual and/or other representations of peoples and cultures across the region

Language and Culture (4 courses)

Learning Clusters (2 courses)

Study Abroad (4-5 courses)

 

Wellness

  • Health and Wellness (1, first or second year)
(1 course)