General Education at Winston-Salem State University provides the intellectual foundation for both the completion of a major program of study and learning beyond college by affording students a broad based education rooted in the Arts, Humanities and Sciences. The General Education curriculum is designed to foster the development of critical skills such as thinking, writing, and speaking; while offering students the opportunity to explore the vast fields that make up the academy.

Students are required to take at least one-half of their courses outside of their major field of study. There is no single path towards fulfilling this requirement. The student is free to choose at least 20 courses that are sampled widely from the curricular offerings.; There are however, some minimum expectations about these choices.

The student must take at least one course from each of seven Areas of Knowledge which include Literature, History, Social/Behavioral Science, Natural Science, Mathematics and Quantitative Logic, Fine Arts and Foreign Language and Culture. One goal of the General Education curriculum is to expose students to the broad array of subject matter that make up the academy. Sampling among course offerings in the arts, humanities, sciences and mathematics provides students with the opportunity to explore discipline based approaches to understanding the world around them, thus cultivating new lenses from which to view themselves and the human condition. At Winston-Salem State University, students are required to complete at least one course from each of the following areas of knowledge:

Courses focusing on the seven Learning Outcomes must also be factored into students’ choices. At least two of the courses must be writing intensive and at least three of the courses must have critical thinking as a major learning outcome. Students must also sample at least two courses with a focus on scientific literacy and two courses with a focus on quantitative literacy. Critical reading, oral communication and information literacy are also important outcomes that must be sought in a student’s liberal arts plan. Students must take at least one course with a primary focus in each of these areas.
This video shows you how to create your class schedule based on the areas of knowledge, learning outcomes, curriculum themes, and liberal learning seminar.

Additionally, students are encouraged to explore courses designed to broaden their perspectives on various Curricular Themes including globalization, diversity, civic engagement, sustainability, moral and ethical reasoning, and healthy living. Students are required to take a minimum of two courses from amongst these areas before they graduate.

At all times, there are particular concepts, themes and ideas that raise concern and debate within society. These themes are often particular to the times, but how they are reconciled may have long-term implications for individuals and humankind alike. Creating opportunities for students to grapple with such topics helps to foster attitudes of awareness, interest, attention, concern, and responsibility. Students at Winston-Salem State University are required to take at least one course from at least two of the themes listed below.

All freshmen are required to complete a Liberal Learning Seminar sometime during their first year. The illustration below represents the minimum requirements to fulfill the General Education requirements.

Liberal Learning Seminars (LLS) are designed to bring small groups of students together with faculty or staff on a regular basis. These seminars place a strong emphasis on critical inquiry, reading, frequent writing, collaborative learning, and other skills that develop students’ intellectual and practical competencies. LLS bring students and faculty together in a shared process of inquiry around a broad, sometimes interdisciplinary topic or question.

Freshmen and transfer students with less than 30 hours are required to take a LLS in their first year.