About General Education

General Education is a foundation of knowledge and life skills that prepares students for success and encourages their development into informed and engaged critical thinkers. General Education at EWU covers a broad variety of subjects. It introduces research, creative and service projects, and emphasizes success skills and learning outcomes.

In May 2017, the Faculty Senate voted overwhelmingly to change the structure of General Education. See key changes from the old program and a timeline for implementation below.

Student with notepad sitting above a valley with a lake

Key Differences

The key differences between the previous General Education model and the new model are:

In its final implementation the new General Education program will have around fifteen credits fewer.

Previous sublists have been removed. Our new model only requires two courses from each of the main Breadth Areas:

  • Social Science
  • Natural Science
  • Arts & Humanities

This will streamline the General Education experience for students.

Outcomes have become a more ingrained aspect of General Education at EWU to help make the experience more cohesive for students and more assessable for faculty.

The following outcomes are from the AAC&U best practices and are currently being honed to best fit EWU.

For FYE and Breadth courses, each class will focus on two Learning Outcomes:

One of the following:

  • Analytical Thinking
  • Creative Thinking
  • Information Literacy

And one of the following:

  • Written Communication
  • Quantitative Literacy

Diversity & Global Studies requirements will include:

One of the following:

  • Analytical Thinking
  • Creative Thinking
  • Information Literacy

And Diversity or Global Issues (as applicable)

More about Outcomes

For more information, see our Outcomes page.

The existing CPLA requirement has been dropped in recognition of students’ incoming levels of computer literacy. Discussions of technology requirements are ongoing.

Wondering if you have to take it? See our FAQ page.

Other courses required for graduation include:

  • Writing competency
  • Writing proficiency
  • Quantitative literacy
  • Capstone

However, these courses are consistent with the previous General Education Requirements (GECR).

Implementation Timeline

Academic Year 17-18: Beginning of implementation

  • Reduce the general education requirements to 2 courses in each breadth area, shaving 10 credits off
  • Offer more FYE pairs and single FYE courses. Support for FYEs (summer workshops, integration of goals, assessment)
  • Each currently approved general education course identifies the outcomes that best fit their course

Academic Year 18-19: Continued Implementation

  • Phase out CPLA requirement (possibly replace with technology across the curriculum [TAC])
  • Build FULL capacity in FYEs and assess them
  • Provide stipends to faculty who volunteer to incorporate goals into their courses and assess them
  • Build capacity for writing and quantitative stand-alone courses
  • All new courses submitted to CPAC intended to meet GE requirements describe the goals they intend to integrate and assess
  • Completion of development of Breadth Area Criteria

Academic Year 19-20: Continued Implementation

  • Development of Diversity and Global Studies Criteria
  • Development of Quantitative and Symbolic Reasoning Criteria
  • Development of Writing Proficiency Criteria

Academic Year 20-21: Anticipated Completion of Implementation

  • Completion of Capstone Criteria
  • Complete and total roll out of new General Education program