General Education Program

Students must successfully complete the requirements of the University, the school or college in which they are enrolled, and the specific requirements of their area of specialization. Described below are the General Education requirements for all degrees. Students may consult the University Bulletin or their degree audit (DARS) report for recommended general education courses in their major.

At the University of Missouri-St. Louis, General Education affords both freshmen and transfer students the opportunity to develop and apply intellectual tools and to acquire a breadth of knowledge necessary in our challenging, technological, and diverse world. This curriculum also challenges students to investigate various disciplines as potential majors, and it prepares them for success in major fields of study. The program complies fully with the Missouri Coordinating Board of Higher Education Guidelines on Transfer and Articulation (June 2000).

Application of Policy to Freshmen

All students in Missouri public universities must complete the requirements of a General Education Plan totaling 42 credit hours in order to earn a baccalaureate degree.

Application of Policy to Transfer Students

Transfer policies describe which courses may apply to UMSL’s General Education requirements. In general, students who transfer to UMSL with an Associate of Arts (AA) degree from an accredited Missouri institution and other approved institutions are considered to have completed all General Education requirements. Additionally, UMSL has a Junior-Level Writing requirement beyond the General Education requirement and the school or college in which they are enrolled may also have a Cultural Diversity requirement. Transfer students without an AA degree from Missouri may transfer a CBHE-approved 42-hour block of General Education courses, in accordance with the CBHE Transfer and Articulation agreement. However, those students transferring with fewer than 42 hours or from a non-participating institution will have their transcripts evaluated on a course-by-course basis. All students must earn a C- or higher in their First Year Writing and Math Proficiency coursework to be eligible to graduate from UMSL.

Transfer courses that meet the requirements of the Core courses or courses that are designated as General Education courses in the Humanities and Fine Arts, the Social Sciences, and the Math and Life/Natural Sciences areas at peer institutions and institutions with whom UMSL has an articulation agreement are considered transferable to UMSL's General Education requirements.

Credit associated with developmental/remedial coursework are not considered transferable to UMSL’s General Education requirements.

Application of Policy to Students Who Started Prior to Fall 2015

Students who earned 24 or more semester hours of credit* at any accredited post-secondary institutions(s) before the start of the fall 2015 semester may meet the General Education requirements stipulated in the UMSL 2014-2015 Bulletin or elect to complete the current General Education Plan described below. Students who earned 24 or more semester hours of credit* at any accredited post-secondary institutions(s) before the start of the fall 2002 semester may also meet the General Education requirements stipulated in the UMSL 2001-2002 Bulletin.

*Only credit that is transferable to UMSL is applicable

General Education Requirements

General Education at the University of Missouri St. Louis offers students an exciting and challenging curriculum that develops core proficiencies and literacies and encourages the exploration of knowledge necessary to succeed in today's changing world. The following information outlines the General Education requirements. Courses used to fulfill one Core area requirement may not be applied to any other Core or Explore area requirement.

Core Areas:
First Year Writing
Math Proficiency
Communication Proficiency
Information Literacy
American History or Government
Explore Areas:
Humanities and Fine Arts
Social Sciences
Math and Life/Natural Sciences

Core Area Descriptions

First Year Writing

Students should be able to write with thoughtfulness, clarity, coherence, and persuasiveness (CBHE General Education, June 2000). The First Year Writing requirement must be satisfied before the student completes 24 hours of course work.  Proficiency can be met through earning a C- or higher in one of the following courses:

ENGL 1100First-Year Writing3
ENGL 1110First-Year Writing For International Students3
HIST 1111Reacting to the Past4
FGN LANG 1111Reacting to the Past: Language, Immigration, and Social Change4
HONORS 1100Freshman Composition3

Math Proficiency

Proficiency in the basic mathematical skills area must be satisfied before the student completes 24 hours of course work. Proficiency can be obtained in one of the following ways.

  • Completing, with a grade of C- or higher, a college degree credit mathematics course.
  • Earning a score of at least 51% on the ALEKS Exam in a proctored environment. Students who fulfill their math proficiency requirement in this manner must take an additional General Education course in order to have a total of 42 credit hours of General Education courses.

Mathematics courses that the University offers that satisfy mathematics proficiency are courses at the 1000 level or above. Proficiency can be met through earning a C- or higher in one of the following courses:

MATH 1020Contemporary Mathematics3
MATH 1021Choice and Chance3
MATH 1025Geometry in the Real World3
MATH 1030College Algebra3
MATH 1045PreCalculus5

Math courses at the 1000 level below MATH 1030  are designed as terminal mathematics courses for students who do not plan to take calculus. The prerequisite for enrolling in these courses is a score of 46% or higher on the ALEKS math placement test.

MATH 1030 or MATH 1045 is required for all students who want to go on to calculus. The prerequisite for enrolling in these courses is a score of 51% or higher on the ALEKS math placement test. (Note: MATH 1035 is also required for students that take MATH 1030 and want to take MATH 1800.)

ALEKS math placement scores used to satisfy prerequisites are valid for approximately 11 months. For exact dates, go to http://www.umsl.edu/~campustesting/Math%20Placement%20Test/faqs.html#valid_dates. Also, ALEKS math placement scores that are used to satisfy prerequisites for courses below MATH 1800 do not need to be obtained in a proctored environment.

Information about the ALEKS math placement test is available on the University’s homepage at http://www.umsl.edu/~campustesting/Math%20Placement%20Test/index.html.

Communication Proficiency

Students will become proficient in verbal communication to enhance their ability to analyze and use communication effectively so that they may engage with others across contexts. A course that counts for the Communication Proficiency requirement must be a course on the topic of English communication and includes:

1)      Analysis and skill building for oral communication

2)      Application of oral communication skills

3)      Assessment and evaluation of skills (e.g., presentations and projects)

The Communication Proficiency requirement may be met through one of the following courses:

COMM 1030Interpersonal Communication I3
COMM 1040Introduction To Public Speaking3
COMM 2230Small Group Communication3
COMM 2240Persuasive Communication3
EDUC 2222Interpretation: Connecting Audiences and Meaning3
HONORS 2010Inquiries In The Humanities (Public Speaking or Storytelling: The Oral Tradition only)3
NURSE 2105Communication In The Nursing Profession3
TH DAN 1210Fundamentals Of Acting3
TH DAN 2241Argumentation and Debate3

Additional courses that may meet this requirement:

  1. A Course designated as a Verbal Communication course in transfer

  2. Future courses, or specific sections of future topics courses, as approved by the General Education Committee

Information Literacy

Students will become literate in accessing and analyzing information  to further learning inside and outside the classroom and to become fully aware participants in the inter-connected global community. A course that counts for the Information Literacy requirement must be a course that studies the construction of objective information and includes:

1) Analysis and evaluation of information for objective accuracy, valid use, or appropriate construction

2) Usage of modern technologies to research, retrieve, synthesize, construct, or present information as needed for academic disciplines.

3) Foundational skills that allow for further specialization in their chosen major/discipline and keep up with continuous evolutions in information construction. 

The Information Literacy requirement may be met through one of the following courses:

CMP SCI 1012Learning to Program Using Virtual Worlds3
CMP SCI 1250Introduction To Computing3
CHEM 2223Quantitative Analysis3
CRIMIN 2210Research Methods In Criminology And Criminal Justice3
CRIMIN 2220Statistical Analysis In Criminology And Criminal Justice4
ED TECH 2230Information Literacy3
HIST 2999Introduction to Historical Inquiry4
HONORS 1130Western Traditions: Social And Behavioral Sciences (Science Vs Pseudo-science in Archaeology only)3
HONORS 2010Inquiries In The Humanities (Media Literacy only)3
HONORS 2030Inquiries In The Social And Behavioral Sciences (Evaluating the Media: A Theoretical Approach only)3
INFSYS 1800Computers And Information Systems 13
INFSYS 2800Information Systems Concepts And Applications3
MATH 1105Basic Probability And Statistics3
MATH 1310Elementary Statistical Methods3
MATH 1320Applied Statistics I3
MEDIA ST 1065Internet Media3
PHIL 2280Minds, Brains, And Machines3
POL SCI 2000Political Analysis3
PSYCH 2201Psychological Statistics4
PSYCH 2219Research Methods3
SOC 2280Technology And Society3
1

Proficiency may be earned through placement test. Students who fulfill their information literacy through a placement test must take an additional General Education course in order to have a total of 42 credit hours of General Education courses.

Additional courses that may meet this requirement:

  1. A course designated as an Information Literacy course in Transfer

  2.  Future courses, or specific sections of future topics courses, as approved by the General Education Committee

American History and Government

Students must satisfactorily complete a course or courses in American history or government taken at UMSL or at other colleges or universities in Missouri. Transfer students should check with the dean's office of their division to determine if they have fulfilled this requirement. The requirement may be satisfied by one of the courses listed on General Education website. 

CRIMIN 1100Introduction To Criminology And Criminal Justice3
ECON 2800History Of American Economic Development3
GS 2020History of Women and Social Movements3
HIST 1001American Civilization To 18653
HIST 1002American Civilization 1865 To Present3
HIST 1003African-American History3
HIST 1004The History Of Women In The United States3
HIST 2001Creating Early America: European Empires, Colonial Cultures, and Native Nations, 1565-17763
HIST 2004United States History: The Civil War Era, 1860-19003
HIST 2005The Modernization Of The United States3
HIST 2006Recent United States History3
HIST 2007History Of Missouri3
HIST 2010From Sea to Shining Sea: The American Frontier 1763 - 18903
HIST 2020History of Women and Social Movements3
HIST 2023US Foreign Relations and Military History To 19003
HIST 2024US Foreign Relations and Military History Since 19003
HIST 2800History Of American Economic Development3
HIST 3041Topics In American Constitutional History3
HONORS 1230American Traditions: Social And Behavioral Sciences3
POL SCI 1100Introduction To American Politics3
POL SCI 2260Law, Politics and Society3
POL SCI 2280Judicial Politics And Policy3
POL SCI 2290Gender And The Law3
POL SCI 2300State Politics3
POL SCI 2320African Americans And The Political System3
POL SCI 3200Constitutional Law3
POL SCI 3210Civil Liberties3
POL SCI 3260The Supreme Court3
POL SCI 3300The American Presidency3
POL SCI 3330Public Opinion and Political Participation3
POL SCI 3331Congressional Politics3
POL SCI 3350Political Parties And Elections3
POL SCI 3450Urban Administration3

Explore Area Descriptions

Courses used to fulfill core area requirements may not be applied to the explore area requirements.

Humanities and Fine Arts

9 credit hours of coursework at the 1000 or 2000 level selected from at least two of the following areas: Art History, English, Dance, Music, Philosophy, Theater, Foreign Language (FGN LANG) 2100, language courses at the 2000 level above 2101, Interdisciplinary and Honors courses with the Humanities or Fine Arts designation, and transfer courses designated as Humanities and Fine Arts general education courses at peer institutions and institutions with whom UMSL has an articulation agreement

Social Sciences

9 credit hours of coursework at the 1000 or 2000 level selected from at least two of the following areas: Anthropology,  Business Administration, Communication, Criminology and Criminal Justice, Economics, Finance, Geography, History, Media Studies, Political Science, Psychology, Sociology, Interdisciplinary and Honors courses with the Social Sciences designation, and transfer courses designated as Social Sciences general education courses at peer institutions and institutions with whom UMSL has an articulation agreement  

Mathematics and Life/Natural Sciences

9 credit hours of coursework at the 1000 or 2000 level selected from at least two of the following areas: Astronomy, Atmospheric Science, Biology, Chemistry, Computer Science, Geology, Mathematics, Physics, Interdisciplinary and Honors courses with the Mathematics and Life/Natural Sciences designation, and transfer courses designated as Math and Life/Natural Sciences general education courses at peer institutions and institutions with whom UMSL has an articulation agreement

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Note: Gender Studies and Military and Veterans Studies courses that are cross-listed with disciplinary designations at the 1000 and 2000 levels may also be used to fulfill the explore area requirements.