General Education Program Prior to August 2017

General Education Program Prior to August 1, 2017

The General Education Requirements (GER) serve as the core of the undergraduate curriculum. The program consists of a sequence of required courses in communications, the arts and humanities, the natural and physical sciences, mathematics, the behavioral and social sciences and health, designed to expose every undergraduate to the broad range of disciplines essential to the development of a liberally educated person. The program helps students to develop the skills necessary for advanced study and for lifelong learning: to obtain some understanding of themselves, of others, and of our social and physical environment; to acquire the ability to think analytically, critically, and creatively and to use the scientific method in problem solving; to develop the capability to integrate their learning with past and present experiences, and to strengthen their potential for contributing to society.

GER Requirements

In our rapidly changing technologically-driven world students from post-secondary institutions across the country are emerging better prepared to challenge the world on new terms – and Coppin students are among them. These new college-educated citizens are no longer interested in why traditional systems failed to solve problems of their parents' generation. Rather, they are more interested in technologically interrogating established norms and best practices that claim to meet the needs of their generation.

Thus, students who enter Coppin State University should expect to exit as persons who have been transformed by the rigors imbedded in oral and written communication, analytical reasoning, and the ever changing demands associated with information literacy. Students who enter Coppin State University should also expect to be held to the academic standards that will train them to engage in reflective practices while they learn to recognize the needs of their communities and their families.

Designed to open new pathways to life as educated citizens of the world the GER 40s – completed by the end of the second year of matriculation provide: a foundational base from which students launch their transformation from student to life-long learner and continue their preparation with a major in the School of Arts & Sciences, the College of Business, the School of Nursing, the College of Behavioral and Social Sciences, and the School of Education under the guidance of an international cadre of faculty, an international student body, and a caring, supportive staff.

General Education Requirements

The General Education Requirements (GER) serve as the core of the undergraduate curriculum. Students are required to complete a sequence of courses in English Composition, Arts & Humanities, Social and Behavioral Sciences, Mathematics, Natural Sciences, and Interdisciplinary & Emerging Issues which are designed to expose every undergraduate to the broad range of disciplines essential to the development of a liberally educated person. The University will measure every student's competency in six institutional learning outcomes:

  1. Written & Oral Communication
  2. Analytical Reasoning
  3. Information Literacy
  4. Social & Self Awareness
  5. Reflective Practice
  6. Responsive Citizenship

Students are required to take courses in the following areas:

English Composition (6.0)
ENGL101 and ENGL 102

Arts & Humanities (15.0)
WLIT 207 
WLIT 208 Or Any 200-Level English
Or Literature course
And PHIL 102 Or PHIL 103
And HIST 201, HIST 202
Or HIST 203, HIST 204
Or HIST 205, HIST 206
And IDIS 103 Or IDIS 102
Or (any Foreign Language)
SPAN 101, 102, 201, 202
FRENCH 101, 102, 103, 104
ART105 Or MUSC201
Or DANC226 Or THEA211

Social and Behavioral Sciences (6.0)
ANTH207 Or ECON 201
Or ECON103 Or POSC301
Or PSYC201 Or SOCI201
Or SOSC200

Mathematics (3.0)
MATH 110 Or MATH 103
Or MATH 125, Or MATH 131
Or MATH 203

Natural Sciences (1 from each of two disciplines BIOL, or CHEM, or PHSC) (7.0)
BIOL 101 Or BIOL 107
And CHEM 101 or CHEM 103
and PHSC 101, PHSC 102, or PHSC 103

Interdisciplinary & Emerging Issues (3.0)
HEED 101 Or (any health course)
HEED 102, HEED 103, HEED 110,
HEED 201, HEED 203, HEED 205
Or SPCH 105 Or SPCH 202 Or
SPCH 204 Or GEOG 102


Student Learning Outcomes

Coppin students' experiences and instruction over the next three to five years will be anchored within an academic framework of three universal Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs): Oral and Written Communication and Analytical Reasoning. These Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs), by definition, represent the university’s commitment to provide students with academic experiences that support their ability to write clear expository and persuasive prose; to use valid research-based arguments as support for their written or oral positions; to express their ideas in language that is both appropriate to the topic and for the target audience, and to write and speak proficiently for those various audiences. Moreover, students will be trained to apply applications of classical and/or current theories and principles from specific content areas; to use critical judgments from a combination of evidences and assumptions to reach viable conclusions; and to collect, analyze, and interpret data via computational literacy and scientific reasoning.

Oral and Written Communication and Analytical Reasoning also provide impetus for the Writing Across the Curriculum (WAC) initiative as an appropriate and timely response to the importance and functionality of media as a mainstay of human experience. Though inclusive by nature Writing Across the Curriculum is purposed to recognize that while students' 21st century modes of communication are filtered through Facebook, MySpace, blogs, email and among other modes of communication the ability to convey a clear idea and to signal that the clear idea has been received and understood is irrevocably foundational to building lives and relationships. Indeed, it is through the ability to communicate and to respond to clear ideas that students will continue to find their 'voice' as significant communicators, and as undergraduates who have been transformed into life-long learners who learn to maintain their standing among local, national, and international communities.

The remaining Student Learning Outcomes: Informational Literacy, Social Awareness, Reflective Practice, and Responsive Citizenship are strategically infused in General Education Requirements and figure prominently across the spectrum of this core curriculum. Students will become proficient in the use of technology and its appropriate applicability and will learn, for example, to use multiple information sources such as online databases, videotapes, government documents, and journals in conducting research and/or in problem solving (e.g., electronic and print periodicals, chapters in books, government documents, archival material, and microfilm) through Informational Literacy. At the same time, students will learn thru Social Awareness: the importance of understanding self and to embrace their responsibilities as engaged citizens and informed leaders in service within the community; the importance of becoming aware of and understanding economic, political, and organizational systems, and the importance of gaining an appreciation of diverse cultural heritages and global societies. These Student Learning Outcomes, Information Literacy and Social Awareness along with Reflective Practice and Responsive Citizenship further characterize the collective learning experiences found in the General Education Requirements.

In sum, Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs) are intended to support, to inform, to provoke, to shape, and to model for students the dynamics of the eternal bond which exists between the right to an education and the responsibility to teach.

Plan of Study

To guide them in this effort each department has constructed a Plan of Study for students and academic advisors. Students will note that although MISY 150 and Freshman Orientation are both required by the university and are not a part of the GER 40s they are listed on the advisement sheet as a reminder for students to complete these courses in the first year of matriculation.

Students will be held accountable for the approved program offered in the initial year of matriculation, or, for formally electing a new program if program changes are made during the student's period of matriculation

Note: Plan of Study can be obtained in respective departments/schools or from other academic advisors.

Additional Information About the Plan of Study

After successful completion of the 40 General Education Requirements, students will follow the Plan of Study to enroll in required courses for the major. (Students entering CSU prior to 2011 fall should consult with an advisor about their specific Plan of Study.) In any case, all students will need to meet with an Academic Advisor to discuss specific course selections to meet graduation requirements.

What is a Plan of Study?

A Plan of Study serves as a guide between a student and the university. It is a coherent, articulated sequence of courses that leads to the baccalaureate degree. The Plan of Study will be issued in the department where students are majors. New students and transfer students with fewer than 24 credits will receive a Plan of Study thru the office of the Dean, University College.

Who must approve the Plan of Study?

The Plan of Study requires the approval of your academic advisor and department chair. Changes in course offerings or programs of study are monitored closely by department chairs and faculty advisors to ensure that students remain actively engaged in course completion for graduation. Students cannot make changes to the Plan of Study without permission from the faculty advisor and department chair.

Does the Plan of Study include transfer credits?

Yes, but only after official transcripts have been submitted to the Office of the Registrar for evaluation and further processing thru appropriate CSU departments.

Are part-time or second degree students required to follow a Plan of Study?

Yes. Part-time and second degree students are required to follow the Plan of Study and should seek appointments with faculty advisors to obtain program and/or university requirements for degree completion.

Are students required to follow each new change in a program of study?

No. However, students must consult with a faculty advisor and/or the department chair to learn the details of a new program of study.

Who will keep the Plan of Study for me?

A copy of your approved Plan of Study will be kept on file in your major department as well as the Office of the Dean, University College (freshmen students).

Frequently Asked Questions

Academic Advisement in the General Education Program

Am I required to complete general education requirements (GERs)?

Yes, everyone must complete 40 or 41 credits of general education requirements to reach the 120 credit hours needed to earn an undergraduate degree.  After the 40/41 credits are completed, students will continue taking courses in the degree program as well as electives. Contact departmental advisers to obtain a current plan of study.

Is there a Plan of Study for the General Education Requirements?

Yes. General education requirements are taken during the first and second years of matriculation.

How much time does it take to complete my GERs?

The general education requirements are designed for completion in three semesters and a summer OR four full-time semesters.

Are general education requirements included in my degree plan?

Yes. All of the general education requirements are included in degree plans and, in some cases, such as Nursing, Social Work, and Education must be completed before the degree core of courses can be attempted.

Suppose I know that I cannot take courses together as recommended by the First Year Experience Academic Adviser, what can I do?

Course selections are based on several factors such as employment, family responsibilities, hours needed for study and research, as well as mode of instruction.  Therefore, students have the flexibility of choosing the right combination of courses to meet their needs; however, students must complete general education requirements by the end of the second year of matriculation.

If I need to repeat a course should I repeat that course at Coppin?

Absolutely! When courses are repeated at Coppin students receive the benefit of the new grade and its quality points.  Quality points are used to compute the grade point average.

I am working to complete courses ahead of schedule, how do I obtain permission to attend another college?

If the desire is to attend a community college or other local university that is not a member of the University System of Maryland students are required to obtain the permission form in the department at Coppin where the course is taught.  For example, Philosophy is taught in the Department of Humanities, therefore, students should go to the Department of Humanities which is located in the Grace Hill Jacobs Building in room 530.

Can any FYE Academic Adviser help me with my course selections?

Absolutely! Although each student is assigned to an FYE Adviser to support efficient delivery of services students will be offered the opportunity to consult with another adviser if their assigned adviser is not available when they visit the office.

If I need a permission code for a general education requirement can I obtain it in the First Year Experience main office?

Absolutely! Advisers are able to request permission codes for courses that are filled and do not have waiting lists and will issue the permission code through Coppin email as soon as it is obtained.

Should I wait until I complete all general education requirements before I get involved with the department where I major?

Absolutely not! In fact, and because of general education requirements come out of academic departments, they are students' first exposure to a degree program. Academic department faculty and staff welcome questions and inquiries about their degree programs.

When is the FYE Academic Advisement office open?

The First Year Experience and all of its resources are available to students Monday through Friday beginning at 8:30am. The Writing and Math Centers stay open as late as 6:30pm during specific times of the academic year.  Call 410-951-3555 or 410-951-3508 for scheduling information.

What other kind of help can I find in the First Year Experience department?

In addition to academic advisement and tutors who help with writing essays, reading, and writing research papers, various mathematics courses including statistics, and selected science courses students can also join the First Year Experience Student Steering Committee (SSC). The FYE Student Steering Committee act as advisors to the Director of University College, generally, the First Year Experience Program specifically. Their experiences obtaining services on and off campus, degree completion support, and partnerships which enhance the undergraduate journey are invaluable and influence program planning for University College and all of its programs. Applications for membership in the FYE Student Steering Committee are available in the FYE main office which is located in Grace Hill Jacobs Building-Room 208. The office opens at 8:30am and closes at 5:30pm. Arrangements for services after 5:30pm can be arranged by visiting the main office or by calling 410-951-4154.