The GE Program page

The GE Program

Ohio State’s General Education is designed to develop and refine qualities, abilities and characteristics that prepare its students to be engaged, resilient and adaptable citizens and leaders for life. It aims to develop in students an engagement with and an ability to apply a range of important modes of thought and inquiry.  Through it, students will examine significant aspects of the human condition in local, state, national and global settings today and in the foreseeable future.

Structure

This image contains a chart of the structure of the New GE. You being with a 1 hour launch seminar,. In Themes, you take 8-12 hours combined beginning with Citizenship for a Diverse and Just World, and choose one of the following: Health and Well-Being, Sustainability, Lived Environments, Traditions, Cultures and Transformations, Number, Nature, Mind, Origins and Evolution, Migration, Mobility, and Immobility, with more Themes being developed. Then you move to Foundations and take 22-25 hours combined of the following three hour topics: Race, Ethnicity and Gender Diversity, Social and Behavioral Sciences, Historical and Cultural Studies, Writing and Information Literacy, Literary, Visual, and Performing Arts, Natural Sciences, Mathematical and Quantitative Reasoning. Your last class is a 1 hour course, Reflection Seminar.

Students gain awareness of the major academic disciplines and approaches through the Foundations component of the GE program. The seven universal categories within Foundations integrate these disciplinary approaches in the context of topical Themes. (An eighth category in Foundations -- World Languages -- applies only to students in the College of Arts and Sciences.) A pair of Bookend seminars support students in navigating and understanding their experiences in the Foundations and Themes.  The GE program and each of its components have goals and expected learning outcomes.

  1. INTELLECTUAL and COGNITIVE SKILLS: Successful students will demonstrate the intellectual and cognitive skills that prepare them to be engaged citizens and leaders for life.
  2. MODES OF INQUIRY: Successful students will engage with and apply a range of important modes of thought, inquiry and expression.
  3. EDUCATED GLOBAL CITIZENSHIP: Successful students will be interculturally competent global citizens who can engage with significant aspects of the human condition in local, state, national and global settings.
  4. EMOTIONAL, SOCIAL and PROFESSIONAL ABILITIES: Successful students will demonstrate skills and abilities needed for engaged citizenship and personal and professional growth.

Successful students are able to:

1.1 Locate and select information sources that are credible, relevant and appropriate to the context.

1.2 Demonstrate critical and logical thinking by analyzing and integrating information from multiple sources and disciplines.

1.3 Read, listen, compose and speak in a variety of genres and modalities for a range of purposes and audiences.

1.4 Apply learned concepts and skills to new situations.

2.1 Analyze, explain and evaluate modes of thought, inquiry and expression current in art, cultural studies, design, history, literary studies, mathematics, natural sciences, philosophy, social sciences and technology.

2.2 Use methods of research, inquiry, creativity and discovery across disparate disciplines to generate and respond to socially and ethically important topics.

3.1 Describe, analyze and discuss the institutions and the diverse cultural traditions of the United States and other nations, and issues of global interdependence.

3.2 Examine, critique and appreciate various expressions and implications of diversity, equity and inclusion, both within and beyond U.S. society.

3.3 Describe, analyze and critique the roles and impacts of human activity on both human society and the natural world.

3.4 Apply the knowledge, skills, attitudes and qualities of an interculturally competent global citizen in a range of contexts and across human differences.

4.1 Describe and apply skills needed to maintain resiliency and personal well-being in contemporary society.

4.2 Plan for personal, professional and career development.

4.3 Employ technology effectively and ethically to enhance academic, professional and personal life.

4.4 Appreciate and participate in a culture of engagement and service.

4.5 Work collaboratively with others to achieve shared goals.


Bookends

The GE Bookends comprise two, 1-credit courses. The opening seminar provides a strong introduction for the broad goals of the General Education program, introduces key skills, and supports sustained growth in terms of attaining program goals. The closing seminar provides opportunities for students to document and reflect on their academic and personal growth and allows for program-level assessment through structured evaluation of learning artifacts and students’ responses to embedded questions within an ePortfolio.

  1. Develop an understanding of the purpose and structure of the GE.
  2. Begin to develop critical skills and habits to navigate the academic environment.
  3. Articulate students’ academic and program goals and find opportunities to express those goals within the GE from various disciplinary perspectives.

Successful students will be able to …

1.1 Describe the integrative nature of the structural elements of the GE.

1.2 Demonstrate comprehension of the purpose of the GE.

2.1 Use technology effectively to accomplish academic and personal goals.

2.2 Demonstrate basic familiarity with the ePortfolio system.

2.3 Critically consider implications of information and technology use.

3.1 Articulate one’s academic identity, motivations, and curiosity.

3.2 Develop a plan to investigate a personal, societal, or global question within the GE from various disciplinary perspectives.

  • Successful students will demonstrate the intellectual and cognitive skills that prepare them to be engaged citizens and leaders for life by reflecting on a range of important modes of human thought, inquiry and expression.
  • Successful students will be interculturally competent global citizens who can engage with significant aspects of the human condition in local, state, national and global settings.
  • Successful students will demonstrate skills and abilities needed for engaged citizenship and personal and professional growth.

Successful students will be able to …

1.1 Reflect on their developing academic motivation as well as emerging professional or disciplinary identities.

1.2 Critically evaluate their experiences as engaged citizens and leaders with significant questions spanning a range of important modes of human thought, inquiry and expression.

2.1 Reflect on their developing intercultural competency.

2.2 Critically evaluate one’s understanding and awareness of the global context, and recognize opportunities to contribute to and shape the larger world.

3.1 Reflect on personal development in the areas of curiosity, imagination, adaptability and intentionality to achieve personal and professional goals.

3.2 Critically evaluate skills needed to maintain personal well-being and resiliency.


Foundations

The seven universal categories of the Foundations component introduce students to academic disciplines and their modes of inquiry. All students are required to complete a course in each of the seven categories.

  1. Successful students will engage in a systematic assessment of how historically and socially constructed categories of race, ethnicity and gender, and possibly others, shape perceptions, individual outcomes and broader societal, political, economic and cultural systems.
  2. Successful students will recognize and compare a range of lived experiences of race, gender and ethnicity.

Successful students are able to:

1.1 Describe and evaluate the social positions and representations of categories including race, gender and ethnicity, and possibly others.

1.2 Explain how categories including race, gender and ethnicity continue to function within complex systems of power to impact individual lived experiences and broader societal issues.

1.3 Analyze how the intersection of categories including race, gender and ethnicity combine to shape lived experiences.

1.4 Evaluate social and ethical implications of studying race, gender and ethnicity.

2.1 Demonstrate critical self-reflection and critique of their social positions and identities.

2.2 Recognize how perceptions of difference shape one’s own attitudes, beliefs or behaviors.

2.3 Describe how the categories of race, gender and ethnicity influence the lived experiences of others.

  1. Successful students will critically analyze and apply theoretical and empirical approaches within the social and behavioral sciences, including modern principles, theories, methods and modes of inquiry.
  2. Successful students will recognize the implications of social and behavioral scientific findings and their potential impacts.

Successful students are able to:

1.1 Explain basic facts, principles, theories and methods of social and behavioral science.

1.2 Explain and evaluate differences, similarities and disparities among institutions, organizations, cultures, societies and/or individuals using social and behavioral science.

2.1 Analyze how political, economic, individual or social factors and values impact social structures, policies and/or decisions.

2.2 Evaluate social and ethical implications of social scientific and behavioral research.

2.3 Critically evaluate and responsibly use information from the social and behavioral sciences.

1A. Successful students will critically investigate and analyze historical ideas, events, persons, material culture and artifacts to understand how they shape society and people.

Successful students are able to:

1.1A Identify, differentiate and analyze primary and secondary sources related to historical events, periods or ideas.

1.2A Use methods and theories of historical inquiry to describe and analyze the origin of at least one selected contemporary issue.

1.3A Use historical sources and methods to construct an integrated perspective on at least one historical period, event or idea that influences human perceptions, beliefs and behaviors.

1.4A Evaluate social and ethical implications in historical studies.

1B. Successful students will evaluate significant cultural phenomena and ideas to develop capacities for aesthetic and cultural response, judgment, interpretation and evaluation.

Successful students are able to:

1.1B Analyze and interpret selected major forms of human thought, culture, ideas or expression.

1.2B Describe and analyze selected cultural phenomena and ideas across time using a diverse range of primary and secondary sources and an explicit focus on different theories and methodologies.

1.3B Use appropriate sources and methods to construct an integrated and comparative perspective of cultural periods, events or ideas that influence human perceptions, beliefs and behaviors.

1.4B Evaluate social and ethical implications in cultural studies.

  1. Successful students will demonstrate skills in effective reading and writing as well as in oral, digital and/or visual communication for a range of purposes, audiences and context.
  2. Successful students will develop the knowledge, skills and habits of mind needed for information literacy.

Successful students are able to:

1.1 Compose and interpret across a wide range of purposes and audiences using writing as well as oral, visual, digital and/or other methods appropriate to the context.

1.2 Use textual conventions, including proper attribution of ideas and/or sources, as appropriate to the communication situation.

1.3 Generate ideas and informed responses incorporating diverse perspectives and information from a range of sources, as appropriate to the communication situation.

1.4 Evaluate social and ethical implications in writing and information literacy practices.

2.1 Demonstrate responsible, civil and ethical practices when accessing, using, sharing or creating information.

2.2 Locate, identify and use information through context-appropriate search strategies.

2.3 Employ reflective and critical strategies to evaluate and select credible and relevant information sources.

  1. Successful students will analyze, interpret and evaluate major forms of human thought, cultures and expression, and demonstrate capacities for aesthetic and culturally informed understanding.
  2. Successful students will experience the arts and reflect on that experience critically and creatively.

Successful students are able to:

1.1 Analyze and interpret significant works of visual, spatial, literary and/or performing arts and design.

1.2 Describe and explain how cultures identify, evaluate, shape and value works of literature, art and design.

1.3 Evaluate how artistic ideas influence and shape human beliefs and the interactions between the arts and human perceptions and behavior.

1.4 Evaluate social and ethical implications in literature, visual and performing arts, and design.

2.1 Engage in informed observation and/or active participation within the visual, spatial, literary, or performing arts and design.

2.2 Critically reflect on and share their own experience of observing or engaging in the visual, spatial, literary, or performing arts and design.

  1. Successful students will engage in theoretical and empirical study within the natural sciences while gaining an appreciation of the modern principles, theories, methods and modes of inquiry used generally across the natural sciences.
  2. Successful students will discern the relationship between the theoretical and applied sciences while appreciating the implications of scientific discoveries and the potential impacts of science and technology.

Successful students are able to:

1.1 Explain basic facts, principles, theories and methods of modern natural sciences, and describe and analyze the process of scientific inquiry.

1.2 Identify how key events in the development of science contribute to the ongoing and changing nature of scientific knowledge and methods.

1.3 Employ the processes of science through exploration, discovery and collaboration to interact directly with the natural world when feasible, using appropriate tools, models and analysis of data.

2.1 Analyze the inter-dependence and potential impacts of scientific and technological developments.

2.2 Evaluate social and ethical implications of natural scientific discoveries.

2.3 Critically evaluate and responsibly use information from the natural sciences.

  1. Successful students will be able to apply quantitative or logical reasoning and/or mathematical/ statistical methods to understand and solve problems and will be able to communicate their results.

Successful students are able to:

1.1 Use logical, mathematical and/or statistical concepts and methods to represent real-world situations.

1.2 Use diverse logical, mathematical and/or statistical approaches, technologies and tools to communicate about data symbolically, visually, numerically and verbally.

1.3 Draw appropriate inferences from data based on quantitative analysis and/or logical reasoning.

1.4 Make and evaluate important assumptions in estimation, modeling, logical argumentation  and/or data analysis.

1.5 Evaluate social and ethical implications in mathematical and quantitative reasoning.

  1. Successful students will demonstrate linguistic and cultural competence by accomplishing real-world communicative tasks in culturally appropriate ways in a language other than their first language.
  2. Successful students will demonstrate knowledge of target culture(s) and attitudes on cultural diversity reflective of an interculturally competent global citizen.

Successful students are able to:

1.1 Achieve interpersonal communication by initiating and sustaining meaningful spoken and/or written communication in culturally appropriate ways with users of the target language while actively negotiating meaning to ensure mutual comprehension.

1.2 Achieve interpretive listening/viewing and/or reading by comprehending the main idea and relevant details of a variety of texts (live, recorded, written) in a language other than their first language.

1.3 Achieve presentational speaking/signing and/or writing by delivering live, recorded and/or written presentations in a language other than their first language for varied purposes using information, ideas and viewpoints on a variety of topics.

2.1 Demonstrate familiarity with the products, practices and perspectives (the 3 Ps) of target culture(s) and be able to discuss in an informed and respectful way the diversity of the 3Ps across cultures and individuals.

2.2 Identify and demonstrate attitudes on cultural diversity reflective of an interculturally competent global citizen (such as respect, openness, curiosity and adaptability).


Themes

The Theme topics are broad, interdisciplinary and respond to questions and concerns reflecting the 21st century context informing it from historical, current and futuristic approaches.  A major goal of the Themes is to provide students with the opportunity to examine a complex topic through multiple perspectives and disciplinary lenses.

Each Theme is satisfied by either a single course designed to foster that interdisciplinary and integrative approach or by two courses that each take distinct disciplinary approaches to the topic. The single, 4-credit courses that can satisfy the requirement of the Theme are marked as “Integrative Practice” courses, designed to meet specific pedagogical goals and integrating one of the following additional modes of learning: integrative team teaching, community-based learning, study away, engagement in active research or creative practice, or instruction in a world language other than English.

  1. Successful students will analyze concepts of citizenship, justice and diversity at a more advanced and in-depth level than in the Foundations component.
  2. Successful students will integrate approaches to understanding citizenship for a just and diverse world by making connections to out-of-classroom experiences with academic knowledge or across disciplines and/or to work they have done in previous classes and that they anticipate doing in future.
  3. Successful students will explore and analyze a range of perspectives on local, national or global citizenship and apply the knowledge, skills and dispositions that constitute citizenship.
  4. Successful students will examine notions of justice amid difference and analyze and critique how these interact with historically and socially constructed ideas of citizenship and membership within society, both within the United States and around the world.

Successful students are able to:

1.1 Engage in critical and logical thinking about the topic or idea of citizenship for a just and diverse world.

1.2 Engage in an advanced, in-depth, scholarly exploration of the topic or idea of citizenship for a just and diverse world.

2.1 Identify, describe and synthesize approaches or experiences as they apply to citizenship for a just and diverse world.

2.2 Demonstrate a developing sense of self as a learner through reflection, self-assessment and creative work, building on prior experiences to respond to new and challenging contexts.

3.1 Describe and analyze a range of perspectives on what constitutes citizenship and how it differs across political, cultural, national, global and/or historical communities.

3.2 Identify, reflect on and apply the knowledge, skills and dispositions required for intercultural competence as a global citizen.

4.1 Examine, critique and evaluate various expressions and implications of diversity, equity and inclusion, and explore a variety of lived experiences.

4.2 Analyze and critique the intersection of concepts of justice, difference, citizenship, and how these interact with cultural traditions, structures of power and/or advocacy for social change.

The Lived Environments theme is intended to enable students to explore issues related to humans and their lived environments through both objective and subjective lenses inclusive of physical, biological, cultural and aesthetic space that individuals and groups occupy, and the relationship between humans and these environments.

  1. Successful students will analyze “Lived Environments” at a more advanced and in-depth level than in the Foundations component.
  2. Successful students will integrate approaches to understanding lived environments by making connections to out-of-classroom experiences with academic knowledge or across disciplines and/or to work they have done in previous classes and that they anticipate doing in future.
  3. Successful students will explore a range of perspectives on the interactions and impacts between humans and one or more types of environment (e.g., agricultural, built, cultural, economic, intellectual, natural) in which humans live.
  4. Successful students will analyze a variety of perceptions, representations and/or discourses about environments and humans within them.

Successful students are able to:

1.1 Engage in critical and logical thinking about the topic or idea of lived environments.

1.2 Engage in an advanced, in-depth, scholarly exploration of the topic or idea of lived environments.

2.1 Identify, describe, and synthesize approaches or experiences as they apply to lived environments.

2.2 Demonstrate a developing sense of self as a learner through reflection, self-assessment and creative work, building on prior experiences to respond to new and challenging contexts.

3.1 Engage with the complexity and uncertainty of human-environment interactions.

3.2 Describe examples of human interaction with and impact on environmental change and transformation over time and across space.

4.1 Analyze how humans’ interactions with their environments shape or have shaped attitudes, beliefs, values and behaviors.

4.2 Describe how humans perceive and represent the environments with which they interact.

4.3 Analyze and critique conventions, theories and ideologies that influence discourses around environments.

The Ohio State Sustainability Education and Learning Committee defines a “sustainability course” as one that    “acknowledges the fundamental dependence of humans on earth and environmental systems and addresses one or more aspects of the interdependence of human and natural systems” and focuses its view of these interactions of human-natural systems through at least one of the dimensions of sustainability: “environmental  and earth systems; economy  and governance; society  and culture; engineering, technology  and design; and health and well-being.”

The Goals and Expected Learning Outcomes for this theme were drafted to align with that description. It is expected that all courses in this theme will address the interaction of humans and natural systems and one or more other dimension of sustainability.

  1. Successful students will analyze sustainability at a more advanced and in-depth level than in the Foundations component.
  2. Successful students will integrate approaches to sustainability by making connections to out-of- classroom experiences with academic knowledge or across disciplines and/or to work they have done in previous classes and that they anticipate doing in future.
  3. Successful students will analyze and explain how social and natural systems function, interact and evolve over time; how human well-being depends on these interactions; how actions have impacts on subsequent generations and societies globally; and how human values, behaviors and institutions impact multifaceted potential solutions across time.

Successful students are able to:

1.1 Engage in critical and logical thinking about the topic or idea of sustainability.

1.2 Engage in an advanced, in-depth, scholarly exploration of the topic or idea of sustainability.

2.1 Identify, describe and synthesize approaches or experiences as they apply to sustainability.

2.2 Demonstrate a developing sense of self as a learner through reflection, self-assessment and creative work, building on prior experiences to respond to new and challenging contexts.

3.1 Describe elements of the fundamental dependence of humans on Earth and environmental systems, and on the resilience of these systems.

3.2 Describe, analyze and critique the roles and impacts of human activity and technology on both human society and the natural world, in the past, present and future.

3.3 Devise informed and meaningful responses to problems and arguments in the area of sustainability based on the interpretation of appropriate evidence and an explicit statement of values.

This theme references “nine dimensions of wellness,” a model developed in 2014 after an extensive focus group process, conducted by the Ohio State Center for the Study of Student Life. The Wellness Collaborative -- a group of Ohio State students, faculty and staff -- took the lead on crafting the dimensions and defining them based on feedback received from various stakeholder groups. Other elements of human health and well-being may certainly be included in courses that address this theme.

  1. Successful students will analyze health and well-being at a more advanced and deeper level than in the Foundations component.
  2. Successful students will integrate approaches to health and well-being by making connections to out-of-classroom experiences with academic knowledge or across disciplines and/or to work they have done in previous classes and that they anticipate doing in future.
  3. Students will explore and analyze health and well-being through attention to at least two dimensions of well-being. (e.g., physical, mental, emotional, career, environmental, spiritual, intellectual, creative, financial, etc.)

Successful students are able to:

1.1 Engage in critical and logical thinking about the topic or idea of health and well-being.

1.2 Engage in an advanced, in-depth, scholarly exploration of the topic or idea of health and well-being.

2.1 Identify, describe and synthesize approaches or experiences as they apply to health and well-being.

2.2 Demonstrate a developing sense of self as a learner through reflection, self-assessment and creative work, building on prior experiences to respond to new and challenging contexts.

3.1 Explore and analyze health and well-being from theoretical, socio-economic, scientific, historical, cultural, technological, policy and/or personal perspectives.

3.2 3.2 Identify, reflect on, or apply strategies for promoting health and well-being.

This theme addresses the underlying structural causes of mobility and immobility; the socio-political, economic, environmental, and cultural phenomena contributing to and resulting from migration, forced displacement, incarceration, disability, or flight; people’s hopes and fears about staying or going; and the forms of artistic expression that explore these conditions.
 

1. Successful students will analyze “Migration, Mobility, and Immobility” at a more advanced and in-depth level than in the Foundations component.

2. Successful students will integrate approaches to understanding the issues involved in migration, mobility, and immobility by making connections to out-of-classroom experiences with academic knowledge or across disciplines and/or to work they have done in previous classes and that they anticipate doing in future. 

3.  Successful students will explore and analyze a range of perspectives on migration, mobility, and immobility, including causes and effects, personal or group experiences, or artistic expression. 
4. Successful students will explain a variety of scholarly or artistic approaches to understanding mobility and immobility, and analyze how texts, perceptions, representations, discourses, or artifacts represent these concerns. 
 

Successful students are able to:

1.1 Engage in critical and logical thinking about migration, mobility, and immobility.

1.2 Engage in an advanced, in-depth, scholarly exploration of migration, mobility, and immobility.

2.1 Identify, describe, and synthesize approaches or experiences as they apply to migration, mobility, and immobility.

2.2 Demonstrate a developing sense of self as a learner through reflection, self-assessment and creative work, building on prior experiences to respond to new and challenging contexts. 

3.1 Explain environmental, political, economic, social, or cultural causes of migration, mobility, and/or immobility.

3.2 Describe and analyze diverse experiences or portrayals of migration, mobility, or immobility (e.g. migration, incarceration, disability, or flight) and the complex effects of these phenomena on individuals, societies, institutions, and/or places. 

4.1 Discuss how migration, mobility, or immobility have shaped attitudes, beliefs, behaviors, and values of individuals and/or institutions. 

4.2 Describe how people (e.g. scholars, artists, scientists, etc.) perceive or represent migration, mobility, or immobility and critique conventions, theories, and/or ideologies that influence such perceptions or representations.

Mathematics seems to be, simultaneously, a construct of the human mind, an extraordinarily powerful tool for understanding nature, and an abstract realm that exists independently of both humans and natural phenomena.  Courses in this theme address foundational issues in mathematics, applications of mathematics in the natural sciences, and aspects of cognitive psychology and artificial intelligence that apply to mathematical comprehension and logical reasoning.  Students will examine the differences and interactions between "pure" mathematics that seeks logical proof and mathematics as applied to science and the description of nature. Students will grapple with the still unresolved philosophical questions of whether and how logical reasoning leads to incontrovertible truths, of why mathematics is so "unreasonably effective" in the natural sciences, and of how and why humans are able to understand and use mathematics.

1. Successful students will analyze the ideas embodied within “Number, Nature, Mind” at a more advanced and in-depth level than in the Foundations component.

2. Successful students will integrate approaches to understanding the ideas embodied within “Number, Nature, Mind” by making connections to out-of-classroom experiences with academic knowledge or across disciplines and/or to work they have done in previous classes and that they anticipate doing in future. 

3. Successful students will experience and examine mathematics as an abstract formal system accessible to mental manipulation and/or mathematics as a tool for describing and understanding the natural world.

Successful students are able to:

1.1 Engage in critical and logical thinking about the ideas embodied within “Number, Nature, Mind”.

1.2 Engage in an advanced, in-depth, scholarly exploration of the ideas embodied by “Number, Nature, Mind”.

2.1 Identify, describe, and synthesize approaches or experiences as they apply to “Number, Nature, Mind”.

2.2 Demonstrate a developing sense of self as a learner through reflection, self-assessment and creative work, building on prior experiences to respond to new and challenging contexts.

3.1 Analyze and describe how mathematics functions as an idealized system that enables logical proof and/or as a tool for describing and understanding the natural world.

Having an appreciation of the deep past is important for understanding humanity’s place in the universe. The origins and evolution theme puts humans into this larger context and allows us to recognize the fragility of the human condition, how and why humans have survived over time—i.e., our strength as a species-- as well as how and why other closely related human species became extinct. 

1. Successful students will analyze “Origins & Evolution” at a more advanced and in-depth level than in the Foundations component.

2. Successful students will integrate approaches to understanding the issues involved in origins and evolution by making connections to out-of-classroom experiences with academic knowledge or across disciplines and/or to work they have done in previous classes and that they anticipate doing in the future.

3. Appreciate the time depth of the origins and evolution of natural systems, life, humanity, or human culture, and the factors that have shaped them over time.

4. Understand the origins and evolution of natural systems, life, humanity, or human culture, and the factors that have shaped them over time.
 

Successful students are able to:

1.1 Engage in critical and logical thinking about the topic or idea of origins and evolution.

1.2 Engage in an advanced, in-depth, scholarly exploration of the topic or idea of origins and evolution.

2.1 Identify, describe, and synthesize approaches or experiences as they apply to origins and evolution.

2.2 Demonstrate a developing sense of self as a learner through reflection, self-assessment and creative work, building on prior experiences to respond to new and challenging contexts.

3.1 Illustrate their knowledge of the time depth of the universe, physical systems, life on earth, humanity or human culture by providing examples or models. 

3.2 Explain scientific methods used to reconstruct the history of the universe, physical systems, life on earth, humanity or human culture and specify their domains of validity. 

3.3 Engage with current controversies and problems related to origins and evolution questions. 

4.1 Describe their knowledge of how the universe, physical systems, life on Earth, humanity or human culture have evolved over time. 

4.2 Summarize current theories of the origins and evolution of the universe, physical systems, life on earth, humanity or human culture.  

This theme explores the study of cultures and societies, past and present, from single and multidisciplinary approaches. To understand the contemporary world, one must understand its past, individual cultures and societies, the creation and development of sub-cultures, as well as the impact of ideological, technological and environmental innovations and changes. Tradition and culture are not static; ideas, institutions, environments (ecological, geological, cosmological), and technologies foster change or promote continuity.

1. Successful students will analyze “Traditions, Cultures, and Transformations” at a more advanced and in-depth level than in the Foundations component.

2. Successful students will integrate approaches to understanding lived environments by making connections to out-of-classroom experiences with academic knowledge or across disciplines and/or to work they have done in previous classes and that they anticipate doing in future. 

3. Successful students will engage in a systematic assessment of how cultures and sub-cultures develop and interact, historically or in contemporary society.

4. Successful students will engage in a systematic assessment of differences among societies, institutions, and individuals’ experience within traditions and cultures.    
 

Successful students are able to:

1.1 Engage in critical and logical thinking about the topic of traditions, cultures, and transformations.

1.2 Engage in an advanced, in-depth, scholarly exploration of the topic traditions, cultures, and transformations.

2.1 Identify, describe, and synthesize approaches or experiences as they apply to traditions, cultures, and transformations.

2.2 Demonstrate a developing sense of self as a learner through reflection, self-assessment and creative work, building on prior experiences to respond to new and challenging contexts.

3.1 Describe the influence of an aspect of culture (religious belief, gender roles, institutional organization, technology, epistemology, philosophy, scientific discovery, etc.) on at least one historical or contemporary issue.

3.2  Analyze the impact of a “big” idea or technological advancement in creating a major and long-lasting change in a specific culture. 

3.3  Examine the interactions among dominant and sub-cultures. 

3.4 Explore changes and continuities over time within a culture or society.

4.1 Recognize and explain differences, similarities, and disparities among institutions, organizations, culture

4.2 Explain ways in which categories such as race, ethnicity, and gender and perceptions of difference, impact individual outcomes and broader societal issues.


Integrative Practices

The GE allows students to take a single, 4+ credit course to satisfy a particular GE Theme requirement if that course involves key practices that are recognized as integrative and high impact. Practices currently qualifying for designation as 4+ credit, integrative courses are: service learning; education abroad and away; research and creative Inquiry; interdisciplinary team-taught courses; and courses with instruction in a foreign language. Expectations have been defined for each practice.

Service learning can be defined as a course in which students participate in defined, supported service activities that benefit the community, and in which they reflect on their experience to enhance their understanding of course topic and discipline.

Courses identified as GE Integrative Practice: Service-Learning will include:

  • Performance expectations set at appropriately high levels -- e.g., students engage in appropriately linked academic and experiential exploration of the community setting in which they study.
  • Significant investment of time and effort by students over an extended period of time -- e.g., students develop an increasing appreciation of the issues, resources, assets, and cultures of the community in which they are working.
  • Interactions with faculty, peers and community partners about substantive matters including regular, meaningful faculty mentoring, peer support and community partner interaction.
  • Frequent, timely and constructive feedback to students on their work from all appropriate sources, especially on their community awareness and engagement, and their experience with difficult differences.
  • Periodic, structured opportunities to reflect and integrate learning -- e.g., students reflect on the service activity in such a way as to gain further understanding of course content, a broader appreciation of the discipline, and an enhanced sense of personal values and civic responsibility.
  • Opportunities to discover relevance of learning through real-world applications -- e.g., students identify intentional connection between academic content and the community work in which they engage.
  • Public demonstration of competence in academic settings and, if possible, in the community engagement site.
  • Experiences with diversity wherein students demonstrate intercultural competence and empathy with people and worldview frameworks that may differ from their own.
  • Explicit and intentional efforts to promote inclusivity and a sense of belonging and safety for students -- e.g., use of universal design principles, culturally responsible pedagogy.
  • Clear plan to market this course to get a wider enrollment of typically underserved populations.

Both Education Abroad and Education Away courses and programs help students explore cultures, life experiences and worldviews different from their own. These courses -- which may address U.S. diversity, world cultures, or both -- often explore “difficult differences” such as racial, ethnic and gender inequality, or continuing struggles around the globe for human rights, freedom, environmental justice, power, and other issues relevant to General Education themes. Frequently, intercultural learning is augmented by immersion experiences in diverse communities in local and global settings.

Courses identified as GE Integrative Practice: Education Abroad and Away will include:

  • Performance expectations set at appropriately high levels, engaging in both academic and experiential exploration of the setting in which they study.
  • Significant investment of effort by students over an extended period -- e.g., program length meets high academic standards and allows students to build meaningful connections with local community members and to develop a deep understanding of local cultural context.
  • Interactions with faculty and peers about substantive matters including cultural self-awareness, intercultural empathy and academic content.
  • Students will get frequent, timely and constructive feedback on their work, from all appropriate sources, on their intercultural interactions and academic learning.
  • Periodic, structured opportunities to reflect and integrate learning, especially on their cultural self-awareness and their experience with difficult differences.
  • Opportunities to discover relevance of learning through real-world applications and the integration of course content to contemporary global issues and contexts.
  • Public demonstration of competence both in academic settings and, if possible, in the study away site.
  • Experiences with diversity wherein students demonstrate intercultural competence and empathy with people and worldview frameworks that may differ from their own.
  • Explicit and intentional efforts to promote inclusivity and a sense of belonging and safety for students -- e.g., use of universal design principles, culturally responsive pedagogy, structured development of cultural self-awareness.
  • Clear plans to promote this course to a diverse student body and increase enrollment of typically underserved populations of students.

Undergraduate research is defined by the Council on Undergraduate Research (CUR) as an inquiry or investigation conducted by an undergraduate student that makes an original intellectual or creative contribution to the discipline. Undergraduate creative inquiry is the parallel to research, engaging in a rigorous creative process using (inter)disciplinary methods.

Courses identified as GE Integrative Practice: Research and Creative Inquiry will include:

  • Performance expectations set at appropriately high levels -- e.g., students investigate their own questions or develop their own creative projects.
  • Significant investment of time and effort by students over an extended period -- e.g., scaffolded scientific or creative processes building across the term, including, as examples, reviewing literature, developing methods, collecting data, interpreting or developing a concept or idea into a full-fledged production or artistic work.
  • Interactions with faculty and peers about substantive matters including regular, meaningful faculty mentoring and peer support.
  • Frequent, timely and constructive feedback for students on their work (iteratively scaffolding research or creative skills in curriculum to build over time).  
  • Periodic, structured opportunities to reflect and integrate learning in which students interpret findings or reflect on creative work.
  • Opportunities to discover relevance of learning through real-world applications -- e.g., mechanism for allowing students to see their focused research question or creative project as part of a larger conceptual framework.
  • Public demonstration of competence, such as a significant public communication of research or display of creative work, or a community scholarship celebration.
  • Experiences with diversity wherein students demonstrate intercultural competence and empathy with people and worldview frameworks that may differ from their own. 
  • Explicit and intentional efforts to promote inclusivity and a sense of belonging and safety for students -- e.g., use of universal design principles, culturally responsible pedagogy.
  • Clear plan to market this course to get a wider enrollment of typically underserved populations.

Integrative, interdisciplinary, team-taught courses must address a topic that is too broad or complex to be dealt with adequately by a single discipline or profession, draw on different disciplinary perspectives, and integrate their insights through construction of a more comprehensive perspective.

Courses identified as GE Integrative Practice: Interdisciplinary Team-Taught Courses will include:

  • Performance expectations set at appropriately high levels -- e.g., students investigate large, complex problems from multiple disciplinary perspectives.  
  • Significant investment of time and effort by students over an extended period -- e.g., engage the issue iteratively, analyzing with various lenses and seeking to construct an integrative synthesis.
  • Interactions with faculty and peers about substantive matters including regular, meaningful faculty mentoring and peer support about conducting interdisciplinary inquiry.
  • Frequent, timely and constructive feedback for students on their work (scaffolding multiple disciplinary perspectives and integrative synthesis to build over time).
  • Periodic, structured opportunities to reflect and integrate learning -- e.g., students should work to integrate their insights and construct a more comprehensive perspective on the issue.
  • Opportunities to discover relevance of learning through real-world applications and the integration of course content to contemporary global issues and contexts.
  • Public demonstration of competence, such as a significant public communication of their integrative analysis of the issue.
  • Experiences with diversity wherein students demonstrate intercultural competence and empathy with people and worldview frameworks that may differ from their own. 
  • Explicit and intentional efforts to promote inclusivity and a sense of belonging and safety for students -- e.g., use of universal design principles, culturally responsive pedagogy, structured development of cultural self-awareness.
  • Clear plans to promote this course to a diverse student body and increase enrollment of typically underserved populations of students.

Courses that include learning in a language other than English offer experiences that are culturally different from what students usually experience at Ohio State. These courses are driven by learning goals that create integrative, high-impact learning. They help students explore theme content across languages, cultures, life experiences and worldviews. Intercultural learning is augmented by virtual and/or in-person target language experiences in diverse linguistic communities and settings.

Courses identified as GE Integrative Practice: Instruction in a Language Other Than English will include:

  • Critical thinking and analysis: Students will systematically and methodically analyze their own and others' assumptions in light of linguistic and cultural contexts and carefully evaluate the impact of these perspectives when representing a position.
  • Intercultural communication: Students will use the target language appropriately in the interpersonal and presentational modes to develop and present a position on the theme.
  • Scholarly engagement: Students will engage with the theme content in the target language through written, spoken and visual modes. 
  • Intercultural communication: Students will articulate appropriately a thorough and complex understanding of the issues, resources and assets of the theme as discussed in the target language and as embedded in the target culture(s).
  • Integration of knowledge and adaptability: Students will connect, analyze and adapt knowledge (facts, theories, etc.) about theme content in the context of the target language and culture(s).
  • Multiple perspectives: Students will evaluate and apply diverse perspectives from multiple cultural lenses and from more than one language to complex subjects.
  • Collaboration: Students will engage in collaborative approaches to the theme with classmates and/or interlocutors outside the classroom community. 
  • Self-awareness: Students will thoroughly evaluate the impacts on themselves and their understanding of the discipline(s) that they have gained by studying the theme in the target language and from the perspective of the target culture(s).
  • Intercultural Competence: Students will identify and demonstrate perspectives related to the theme that reflect an interculturally competent global citizen (such as respect, openness, curiosity, adaptability and empathy).

Embedded Literacies

Advanced writing, data analysis, and fluency with key technologies are literacies that are meant to be developed throughout a student’s major coursework and higher education experience. In an era of big data, evidence-based policy making, and interconnected societies, data analysis, technology, and advanced writing have all become essential for a contemporary undergraduate education.

An embedded literacy can be met through a specific course that addresses all of the Expected Learning Outcomes associated with that literacy, or through a set of courses that together satisfy the Expected Learning Outcomes. Because they are tied to a student’s major, the ways in which a student satisfies the requirements for each embedded literacy is determined by the academic program offering the degree.

Students must be able to develop skills in drawing conclusions and critically evaluating results based on data. Successful students will meet the goals for either a Quantitative Data Analysis (A) or Qualitative Data Analysis (B) course, as appropriate for their academic program.

1A. Successful students develop skills in drawing conclusions and critically evaluating results based on data.

Successful students are able to:

1.1A Explain basic concepts of statistics and probability.

1.2A Apply methods needed to analyze and critically evaluate statistical arguments.

1.3A Recognize the importance of statistical ideas.

1.4A Evaluate the social and ethical implications of data collection and analysis, especially in relation to human subjects.

1B. Successful students develop skills in drawing conclusions and critically evaluating results based on data.

Successful students are able to:

1.1B Explain the utility of different approaches to qualitative data analysis.

1.2B Apply key methods and tools in qualitative data analysis.

1.3B Interpret the results of qualitative data analysis to answer research questions.

1.4B Evaluate the social and ethical implications of data collection and analysis, especially in relation to human subjects.

Graduates of The Ohio State University should be proficient writers. Writing is a core part of the learning, thinking and practice students develop to become informed citizens and professionals. Opportunities to develop proficiency in advanced writing are expected as part of a student’s major program. Major programs that do not have interest or capacity to develop writing-intensive courses should require a course in writing from another appropriate unit.

  1. Successful students develop advanced skills in inquiry, critical thinking, composing and communicating for a specific purpose, context and audience using an appropriate genre and modality.
  2. Successful students apply knowledge of writing and research to specific contexts.

Successful students are able to:

1.1 Investigate and integrate knowledge of the subject, context and audience with knowledge of genres, conventions and rhetorical choices to advance a particular writing objective.

1.2 Use credible and relevant sources of information, evaluate assumptions, and consider alternative viewpoints or hypotheses to express ideas and develop arguments.

2.1 Reflect on how they adapt rhetorical and research strategies they have learned to new contexts.

2.2 Develop scholarly, creative or professional products that are meaningful to them and their audience.

2.3 Evaluate social and ethical implications of writing and information literacy practices.

Students are expected to develop familiarity with specific forms of technology, and of their practical possibilities and limitations, in relation to particular disciplinary or interdisciplinary projects.

  1. Successful students develop a critical appreciation of the relations between technologies and their contexts (social, cultural, historical) and of the range of effects and consequences (legal, ethical, political) produced or enabled by particular technologies.

Successful students are able to:

1.1 Critically describe the relationships between technology and society in historical and cultural contexts.

1.2 Recognize how technologies emerge and change.

1.3 Evaluate the social and ethical implications of technology.