What is General Education?
From the sciences to the humanities, General Education at Penn State is the cornerstone for preparing students to live and work in our diverse global society.More
Why are we doing this?
General Education has long been recognized as a critical component of Penn State’s mission of research, teaching and service. Its central role in shaping the lives of our undergraduates was reiterated in the 2009-10 Strategic Plan, which called for a comprehensive review and re-evaluation of the goals and requirements of General Education at Penn State. At a national level, higher education faces the pressures of increasing tuition and decreasing public funding, and the potential for transformation by newly emerging technologies.
Responding to these challenges as opportunities, we seek to make substantive changes to our undergraduate curricula that will elevate the academic quality of a Penn State education. With the national call for accountability and affordability in higher education, and the need to ensure that credit hours and tuition dollars fulfill the promised goals of an undergraduate degree, we must ensure our GenEd requirements are not only worthy of the significant place they occupy in the curriculum, but that they also prepare our graduates to thrive in increasingly competitive global contexts.
We envision a distinctive, Penn State General Education curriculum that embraces intellectual inquiry, diversity, and excellence, and as we draft a proposal for the Faculty Senate’s consideration we seek robust constructive engagement with Senators and other stakeholders.
Building On Great Foundations
Working together with input from the entire University community, we intend to develop a revised General Education curriculum that is rigorous, compelling, and relevant to the changing world into which students will graduate.
Making General Education relevant to a 21st Century world.
Integrating the research endeavor into the General Education curriculum.
Making General Education at Penn State more rigorous.
How are we doing this?
This is a website for engaging discussion.
This website was design to engage you in vibrant discussion about General Education at Penn State. The process we are undertaking here is difficult, often frustrating, and sometimes messy — but that is because we are trying to engage the university community in a substantive way about an issue that is central to the educational mission about which we all care deeply.
What is the greatest challenge facing GenEd in the next decade?
Meet the Folks Leading the Change
Meet the people who are leading the transformation and evolution of General Education at Penn State. Discover why Gen Ed matters to them.
“General Education enables students to expand their horizons beyond a narrow discipline, to see the world in more nuanced and textured ways, and to craft meaningful lives for themselves and others.”
“I want Penn State graduates to enter the next phase of their lives with the knowledge, skills and values for citizenship.”
“Because here at the UNIVERSE-ity, we educate the whole person, and help you discover interests you didn’t even know you had.”
“It contributes to being a well-rounded person, and often leads to interests and knowledge that is important in life. I got fascinated with Buddhism when I was an undergrad at Penn State and took 9 credits in that area. I also discovered live theater and learned several sports that I play today. I’m a better person thanks to GenEd experiences.”