The General Education curriculum at Winston-Salem State University is designed to offer students a mix of the liberal arts as a foundation for the major.  Students are required to take approximately one-half (a minimum of 60 semester hours) of their courses outside of their major field of study.  Most of these courses are taken in the first two years at the university.  Students have choice in the courses they take and are encouraged to sample widely across the curriculum.  There are some minimum expectations about the courses taken in general education. 

Seven Learning Outcomes

The faculty adopted seven learning outcomes on April 15, 2010 as the General Education Learning Outcomes for all undergraduates.  The general education curriculum requires that at least two courses must be writing intensive (Written Communication) and at least three courses must have Critical Thinking as a major learning outcome.  Students must also complete at least two courses with a primary focus on Scientific Literacy and two courses with a primary focus on Quantitative Literacy.  Students must also take at least one course with a primary focus on Critical Reading, Oral Communication and Information Literacy.  As each course is at least three (3) semester hours (SH), students must complete 48 SH to meet this requirement.

Seven Areas of Knowledge

Students must also take at least one course from each of the seven Areas of Knowledge which include Literature, Historical Studies, Social/Behavioral Science, Natural Science, Mathematics and Quantitative Logic, Fine Arts, and Foreign Language and Culture.  This requirement by itself would be 21 SH.  However, many courses will both address an Area of Knowledge and a general education learning outcome and, thus, fulfilling this requirement may not add any additional hours. 

Two Curricular Themes

Finally, students are encouraged to explore courses designed to broaden their perspectives on 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 Curricular Themes before they graduate.  These do not have to be independent courses but rather can be a major focus or outcome of a course that meets the previous requirements of addressing a general education outcome and an area of knowledge. 

One Liberal Learning Seminar

Liberal Learning Seminars (LLS) 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.  This 3 SH course does not fulfill the requirements for either the general education learning outcomes or an area of knowledge.

Transfer Students

The registrar will determine credits that can transfer to WSSU. Students will work with their advisors to distribute the courses relative to the general education framework.   Any student who transfers less than 30 SH is required to complete a Liberal Learning Seminar sometime during their first year at WSSU.

Those who transfer from a community college with an Associate in Arts Degree or Associates in Science degree will not need to meet additional general education requirements at WSSU.  There may be pre-requisites courses that are needed for particular major programs.  Transfer students are advised to review the WSSU catalog regarding specific pre-requisite course requirements related to courses in the various major programs. 

Developmental Skills Courses

Developmental skills courses are non-credit, basic skills classes for students who demonstrate skill deficiencies in writing in English, mathematics, or reading as determined by placement examinations.

Developmental skills courses do not count towards the hours needed to fulfill either general education requirements or the 60 SH outside of the major requirement. 

Winston-Salem State University

601 S. Martin Luther King Jr. Drive

Winston-Salem, NC 27110

Phone: (336) 750-2000

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