General Education Program
The Saylor Foundation invites you to use our materials in any number of ways—to tutor yourself, to instruct others, to brush up on areas in which you need extra help, to spend an afternoon learning about astrophysics, or however you wish. However, should you choose to proceed through our materials with the intention of simulating the traditional four-year higher education experience, you will need to select a major, fulfill its requirements, and complete the General Education Program outlined below.
The purpose of the General Education Program is to educate students about what we—as human beings—know about ourselves: our history as a species, our diverse cultures and religious experiences, our physical make-ups and environments, and how we communicate and support ourselves economically. The curriculum is also designed to enhance your abilities to think analytically using quantitative and qualitative information and to consider ethical questions. In short, the curriculum will help you prepare to be a reflective, confident, productive citizen of your local, national, and global communities. The curriculum also communicates the importance of continued learning and reflection. Given the rapid expansion of knowledge and changes in how we create, transfer, and use it, this may be the most important lesson of all. You should complete this program and the requirements of your chosen major understanding that you will still not know everything you will ever need to know.
The General Education Program has two focuses: skill development and knowledge enhancement. The courses you will take in order to satisfy the requirements of your chosen major will build on and reinforce what you learn in this program. You must fulfill all of the General Education requirements (in addition to the requirements outlined in your chosen area of study) if you wish to complete coursework equivalent to a four-year program of study.
Requirement: 2 courses
Stipulations: These courses do not count toward a major in English. You should take ENGL001 in your first semester and ENGL002 or the equivalent early in your studies at saylor.org. By “equivalent,” we mean any course in another discipline in which you will perform research, organize information, form and test hypotheses, and draw conclusions.
Learning outcomes: Students will be able to collect, describe, and analyze information in their written work that discusses their assumptions, ideas, and conclusions.
ENGL002: English Composition II (or equivalent)
Requirement: Any 2 of the following courses.
Learning outcomes: Students will be able to analyze and draw conclusions from quantitative data using mathematical concepts and appropriate formulas or models.
Select 2 of the following courses from the Mathematics Major:
Requirement: 1 course
Stipulations: Students should take this course early in their learning career.
Learning outcomes: Students will be able to use today’s hardware and software technologies and be prepared to understand and use emerging technologies.
Requirement: 6 courses
Learning outcomes: Students will understand the ways in which ideas, culture, individual and group action, the media, political and economic forces, gender, race, religion, history, and biology interact and influence local, national, and global communities.
Select one of the following courses from the History discipline:
Select one of the following courses from the Political Science discipline:
Select one of the following courses from the Psychology discipline:
Requirement: 4 courses. Two semesters of a foreign language are required.
Learning outcomes: Students will learn about diverse cultures, aesthetics, and philosophy or ethics.
Select two courses from the following options:
Requirement: 2 courses; these courses include some simulated lab work.
Learning outcomes: Students will learn and apply scientific methods as they discover how natural systems operate and interact with each other and with people and communities.
Select one pair of courses: