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2018-19 Undergraduate Academic Catalog

General Education Council

Andrew C. Koehl, Ph.D., Chair

The General Education Council oversees four programs: the Academic Exploration Program (AEP), the B.A. in Liberal Arts, the B.S. in Cross-Disciplinary Studies, and the General Education Program, which is the portion of the curriculum and co-curriculum shared by all students.

The Academic Exploration Program is designed for students who are not ready to declare a major.  This program offers a systematic approach to help students thoughtfully select a major.  Students may enter the program upon entry to Roberts, and remain in the AEP for up to four semesters.

The General Education Council also offers students two individually designed undergraduate degrees: the B.A. in Liberal Arts and the B.S. in Cross-Disciplinary Studies.  These degrees provide valuable alternatives to traditional majors by focusing on the breadth of knowledge acquired through the study of multiple disciplines and the pursuit of integrative, interdisciplinary relationships that form the basis of liberal studies.  Students are encouraged to construct creative, challenging, and timely degrees relevant to their personal interests and professional goals.

Additionally, the General Education Council oversees the General Education Program.  The purpose of the General Education Program at Roberts Wesleyan College is to provide students with learning experiences foundational to understanding and integrating a Christian worldview and a liberal arts education. 

The General Education Program is designed so students will

  • explore values, faith, and worldviews
  • investigate connections and pursue integration among disparate learning experiences
  • develop intellectual abilities and academic skills
  • understand foundational disciplinary perspectives
  • practice responsible living.

An institution’s educational program is broader than its particular courses of study. General Education course requirements, major programs, electives, and co-curricular experiences are all controlled by liberal arts goals. The General Education Program at Roberts Wesleyan College rests on a shared understanding of the following terms:

Liberal education is the goal of the Roberts Wesleyan experience. It is the effective synthesis of diverse components of the undergraduate education, including general education courses, the major program, free electives, and co-curricular experiences. A liberal arts education is one in which the student is exposed to the aesthetic, historic, philosophic, and scientific methodologies, and thereby develops skills in computation, rhetoric, logic, critical analysis, and behavioral, historical, and scientific investigation.

General education is the "breadth" component of the undergraduate curriculum. It involves the study of several required areas (refer to General Education Requirements) to provide a common experience for all students.

The major is the "depth" component of the curriculum. It involves specialization in at least one academic discipline to prepare students for employment, for advanced study, and/or for personal edification.

Liberal arts/sciences programs are programs of study in those academic disciplines traditionally considered the route to the goals of liberal education. These disciplines include the humanities, the sciences, the social sciences, and the arts, which, together, are seen as the bearers of the human cultural heritage.

Professional programs are programs of study that build on the liberal arts/sciences, are grounded in a specialized field of study, and prepare for entrance into professional practice, often leading to certification or licensing by governmental and/or professional organizations. The graduates are qualified, by both knowledge and skills acquired, to enter directly and function fully in their chosen field.

Pre-professional programs are programs of study that either prepare students for a specific type of graduate study or require technical or other specialized training at another institution after some years of broad liberal arts study at Roberts Wesleyan.

Electives are courses that may be chosen by the student to meet personal or professional needs and to complete minimum requirements for graduation.

Co-curricular education complements a student’s academic program, both providing and supporting the intellectual and social climate/environment conducive to academic life.

To speak with a representative of the General Education Council, call 585.594.6113.