Faculty Meeting Focuses on General Education

Posted: September 11, 2000 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

By Jeremy Lasich

The framework for the new general education program, which now includes U.S. history and western civilization as separate requirements, was presented last Friday at a faculty meeting in the Johnson Center. Faculty Senate chairman Don Boileau noted that the document is a “continuous work in progress,” as several faculty members proposed suggestions and changes before it is presented to the Board of Visitors.

The first draft of the new general education program was adopted by the Faculty Senate on March 8, and it has been continuously critiqued and modified by an ad-hoc committee on general education. The most recent version includes requirements separated into three categories–foundation, core, and synthesis. Foundation requirements include oral communication, written communication, quantitative reasoning, and information technology; core requirements include literature, arts, natural science, U.S. history, western civilization, and global understanding; and the synthesis requirement will include one upper-division course mandating students to give an oral and written presentation before a faculty panel.

At Friday’s meeting, faculty members voiced concerns about the modular approach to general education, a too-broad information technology description, which faculty will teach the general education courses, what classes will be included in the western civilization and global understanding requirements, the timeline to create this program, and the omission of philosophy as a requirement.

“I think the meeting was very productive,” says Sheryl Beach, associate provost for general education. “Over the past several months, we have received a lot of great ideas, constructive and intriguing viewpoints, and a wide array of suggestions. This is a tremendous opportunity for George Mason to move forward together.”

For more information, contact Beach at x38770 or visit the general education website.

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