General Education Requirements
The Indiana University Bloomington General Education Program consists of two parts, each of which is viewed by the campus faculty as equally important in the overall undergraduate educational experience. This two-part structure recognizes that some experiences are better completed universally by all undergraduates and other components are better defined within the context of each degree program. The faculty in each degree program are responsible for developing the most appropriate ways of incorporating these two components into each degree program. The Common Ground must be incorporated into every baccalaureate degree program. The Shared Goals are recommended for inclusion in every baccalaureate degree program.
All undergraduate students who matriculate as degree-seeking students at IU Bloomington in or after first summer session 2011 will be required to complete the following General Education Common Ground requirements prior to graduation.
1. English Composition
Students must successfully complete, with a grade of C or higher, one of the following courses:
- CMLT-C 110Writing the World (3 cr.)
- ENG-W 131Elementary Composition (3 cr.)
- ENG-W 170Introduction to Argumentative Writing: Projects in Reading and Writing (3 cr.— this topic only)
2. Mathematical Modeling
Students must successfully complete one of the following courses (or the MATH-D 116–D 117 sequence):
- MATH-M 106The Mathematics of Decision and Beauty (3 cr.)
- MATH-J 113Introduction to Calculus with Applications (3 cr.)
- MATH-D 116
and D 117Introduction to Finite Mathematics I and II (2 cr. + 2 cr.) 1
- MATH-M 118Finite Mathematics (3 cr.)
- MATH-S 118Honors Finite Mathematics (3 cr.)
- MATH-V 118Finite Mathematics with Applications: Finite Mathematics for the Social and Biological Sciences (3 cr.)
- MATH-V 118Finite Mathematics with Applications: Finite Math in Action (3 cr.)
- MATH-V 118Finite Mathematics with Applications: Finite and Consumer Math (3 cr.)
- MATH-M 119Brief Survey of Calculus I (3 cr.)
- MATH-V 119Applied Brief Calculus I: Applied Brief Calculus I for the Life Sciences (3 cr.)
- MATH-M 211Calculus I (4 cr.)
- MATH-S 211Honors Calculus I (3 cr.)
- MATH-M 213Accelerated Calculus (4 cr.)
3. Arts and Humanities
Students must successfully complete at least two courses, for a total of at least 6 cr., from the list of GenEd-approved A&H courses. See the GenEd Bulletin for the official list of GenEd Approved courses, or search for courses currently being offered.
4. Social and Historical Studies
Students must successfully complete at least two courses, for a total of at least 6 cr., from the list of GenEd-approved S&H courses. See the GenEd Bulletin for the official list of GenEd Approved courses, or search for courses currently being offered.
5. Natural and Mathematical Sciences
Students must successfully complete one of the following two options:
At least two courses, for a total of at least 5 cr., from the list of GenEd-approved N&M courses. At least one of these courses must be a natural science course (as indicated by an asterisk* in the GenEd Bulletin).
One of the following 5 cr. GenEd-approved N&M courses with a substantial lab component:
- ANAT-A 215Basic Human Anatomy
- BIOL-L 100Humans and the Biological World
- CHEM-C 103Introduction to Chemical Principles
- CHEM-S 117Principles of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Honors
- PHSL-P 215Basic Human Physiology
- PHYS-P 201General Physics I
- PHYS-P 202General Physics II
6. World Languages and Cultures
Students must successfully complete one of the following three options:
Students must successfully complete the study of a single GenEd-approved world language through the second semester of the second-year level of college-level course work. International students whose native language is not English may fulfill the foreign language requirement through demonstrated proficiency in their native languages, in accordance with the practice and policies of the College of Arts and Sciences.
At the discretion of departments offering the relevant world language courses, and with permission of the appropriate College of Arts and Sciences academic dean, exemptions for approved courses may be earned by satisfactory performance on departmentally approved examinations.
World Culture Courses
Students must successfully complete at least two courses, for a total of at least 6 cr., from the list of GenEd-approved World Culture courses. See the GenEd Bulletin for the official list of GenEd Approved courses, or search for courses currently being offered.
To satisfy the International Experience option, students must complete an approved study abroad program or approved study abroad internship of at least six credit hours and at least six weeks abroad in duration (or a combination of programs totaling six credit hours; if a combination of programs is chosen, the international experiences must, at a minimum, be three weeks abroad in duration, and the student must earn at least three credit hours from the program for it to count as half of the six–credit hour requirement.) The language of instruction of these programs may be English or another world language, and the site of instruction may be any country except the United States. The following options are available, although certain prerequisites and conditions apply to some programs. In all cases, the programs will have been pre-approved for credit by the Overseas Study Advisory Council (1–3 below) or the Office of International Admissions (4 below):
- IU–administered programs
- IU co-sponsored programs
- IU autonomous programs
- Non–IU programs that have been approved in advance by the Office of International Admissions via approval of the Credit Transfer Agreement Form.
For information about opportunities for studying abroad, see the website of the IU Overseas Study Program.
A minimum of 6 credit hours of the IU Bloomington General Education Common Ground curriculum must be completed in residence at Indiana University Bloomington.
Unless otherwise explicitly stated, a grade of D– or higher is sufficient for successful completion of a course in the General Education Common Ground curriculum.
In order to apply toward the General Education Common Ground requirements, a course must be GenEd-approved for the semester in which the course is taken.
For Breadth of Inquiry and World Languages and Cultures, at the discretion of departments, and with permission of the appropriate academic dean (i.e., the academic dean for the course), exemptions for approved courses may be earned by satisfactory performance on departmentally approved examinations.
Equivalencies for English Composition and foreign language courses are established by the College of Arts and Sciences and will apply to the General Education requirements in accordance with the policies published in the current College of Arts and Sciences Bulletin.
Courses in which a student earns a grade of “P” (i.e., Pass) will not count toward fulfillment of Common Ground requirements.
Repeatable courses that are GenEd-approved may apply toward fulfillment of Common Ground requirements more than once only if the course is repeated with a different topic.
Independent study or correspondence courses do not apply toward fulfillment of IU Bloomington General Education Common Ground requirements.
Students who earn the Indiana Statewide Transfer General Education Core (STGEC) milestone at another IU campus or at another Indiana state public institution of higher education prior to matriculation at Indiana University Bloomington will not be subject to IU Bloomington GenEd Common Ground requirements.
For information on transfer credit and the IU Bloomington GenEd Common Ground requirements, consult the GenEd Bulletin.
Each degree program should be designed in such a way that students are provided opportunities to experience these additional aspects of an undergraduate education:
- Intensive Writing
- Information Fluency
- Diversity in the United States
- Enriching Educational Experiences
Each degree program should articulate how undergraduate students fulfill this requirement within their degree program. Normally, the expectations for an intensive writing experience would be: taught by faculty in small sections or by individual arrangement; include a series of written assignments evaluated with close attention to organization and expression as well as to substance and argument; graded revision of assignments.
Information Fluency includes, but goes beyond, information technology skills, to introduce students to critical information resources that underlie the major field of study and introduce students to skills in utilizing information resources within that field. Students should be able to determine the extent of information needed, access the needed information effectively and efficiently, evaluate information and its sources critically, incorporate selected information into one's knowledge base, use information effectively to accomplish a specific purpose, and understand the economic, legal, and social issues surrounding the use of information, and access and use information ethically and legally.
Diversity in the United States
As approved by the Bloomington Faculty Council (Circular B39-1990), the faculty of each undergraduate degree-granting unit shall adopt a degree requirement appropriate to their curriculum that addresses issues of diversity in the United States. Adoption of a requirement that has a focus on the issues of diversity and cultural, racial, ethnic, class, age, ability, sexual orientation, religious, and gender discrimination within the context of the United States would be especially useful in achieving the objectives of enhanced understanding of diversity.
Enriching Educational Experiences
Meaningful educational experiences, some of which may be outside the traditional classroom, can enhance the overall undergraduate academic experience. These experiences may or may not be linked to specific courses. Each academic program should set forth the accepted options for fulfilling this shared goal. IUB recognizes the value of different types of enriching educational activities, such as a service-learning course, internship, community service and community-based action research, fieldwork, capstone project, student teaching, independent research/creative activity program, approved study abroad experience, honors thesis, show, recital, performance, or advocacy in your major. Such experiences provide opportunities to apply discipline-specific skills and knowledge to community issues and to examine issues of service and social responsibility that relate to the chosen career field.
Shared Goals requirements vary by school and degree program.