All undergraduates at USC must satisfy the University’s General Education (GE) Program requirements, providing a well rounded background in critical thinking designed to nurture habits of thought and a desire for lifelong learning. For the past decade-and-a-half, the GE Program has been the centerpiece of undergraduate core curriculum at USC. It has been a model that has served our students well, and when established, it was recognized nationally as a program at the forefront of liberal arts study. However, as Provost Elizabeth Garrett has noted in various academic contexts, we must regularly examine our practices as we always aim toward excellence in all realms, ensuring that USC is a leader in higher education for the 21st Century.
In 2012 the University commenced an examination of our GE Program. The goal of this examination is to ensure that our GE Program provides a foundational, liberal arts educational experience worthy of our undergraduates and reflects the values and aspirations of the University. It is a collaborative process that accounts for priorities of the university administration as well as the insightful feedback provided from across the academic community.
Starting in Fall 2015, the redesigned GE requirements will make up a challenging, multifaceted curriculum that encourages intellectual inquiry, reflection, and scholarship with consequence. It is being designed to help students become resilient and competitive leaders of the future by promoting engagement, fostering mutual understanding, and encouraging citizenship in a global context.