General education courses are included in every program of study, regardless of major or “emphasis,” such as accounting, biology, early childhood education, history, marketing, or psychology. Often shorted to “gen ed,” these courses explore different modes of knowing and reasoning about the world and include examination of nature, mathematics, science, cultures, the arts, history, the human mind, and the ability to express ideas about these fields in conversation and in writing.
General education courses form a core of every program because advisory members, whether they are hiring for profit‐making businesses, non-profit organizations, or government agencies, report that they seek to hire people who can express themselves well, think critically, persevere when there are difficulties, work as a team members, and present themselves professionally. The gen ed courses are designed to also develop these skills and attributes. These courses are listed below.
The General Education courses a student must take are determined by the Program of Study.
General Education Categories
The following are the General Education Categories that students will see referenced in their Program of Study:
The Michigan Transfer Agreement, or MTA, requires 30 credits of Gen Eds. This includes one Math course, and two courses from each of the additional Gen Ed categories. Both the Associate of Arts (AA) and Associate of Science (AS) embed the MTA agreement.
The Associate of Applied Arts and Sciences (AAAS) degrees - like Accounting, Nursing, Welding - require ENG 111 - English Composition I; a Math or Science course; one course each from Communications, Social Science, and Humanities; and an additional Gen Ed Elective (total of 18 credits) in addition to program-specific coursework. Most AAAS program indicate a specific course from each Gen Ed area.
Many AAAS program incorporate Business Electives into the curriculum, a list of which can be found here.
Science faculty have identified several courses that count toward the Associate of Science degree, and have defined these as STEM Electives. Students are required to complete a minimum of 18 credits of STEM electives for the AS degree.