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The Future of Gen-Eds at Pitt-Greensburg: Committee Considers Reducing Curriculum Requirements to Offer Students More Flexibility

by Sone Ekukole-Sone

Photo Courtesy of Kimberly Farmer on Unsplash

The Educational Planning and Policies Committee is working to reduce the number of general education requirements (gen-eds) for future students. 

According to Dr. Sayre Greenfield, professor of English and chair of the committee, the committee’s goals include trying to predict what future classes students will need to be successful in the workforce, while cutting back on classes that may not be as essential. This change will provide more freedom for students, make it easier for those who want to double major, and help transfer students with their credits. 

“We have skills that we feel students need in order to function in school and life,” Dr. Greenfield said. Greenfield listed several essential skills that the committee wants students to have by the time they graduate. These skills are written and oral communication, scientific reasoning, reading skills, and technological competency.

While keeping required courses that build on those skills, the committee also wants students to have flexibility in their education. They believe students want to solely concentrate on their major and ignore other branches of education. The committee has to walk a fine line between allowing students to focus more on their core courses, while providing a curriculum that offers a well-rounded education. 

Greenfield and the committee believe students should study in a range of areas. 

“You can’t just hide in your little corner of the world, especially in this interconnected age,” Greenfield said. “There’s more to education than training for a career.” 

The committee plans to shape the most effective program that encompasses general education principles and to avoid any issues. Their plan is to have required courses count for two or three credits. They hoped to finalize it by the end of this year, but the committee is in the process of putting it into a practical curriculum to account for what students have taken to eliminate outdated credits. 

According to Dr. Greenfield, when President Bob Gregerson came to campus, he told the committee to revise the General Education Program. The idea was to create links between different fields to bridge the gap between science and the humanities. 

“I think having a sampling of each of the divisions is a way of gaining mental flexibility,” Dr. Greenfield said. “The world is bigger than you know and more connected than you can imagine.” 

1 Comment on The Future of Gen-Eds at Pitt-Greensburg: Committee Considers Reducing Curriculum Requirements to Offer Students More Flexibility

  1. Great read! I think reducing the number of gen-eds is a great idea and will provide more freedom for students. I’m curious, how will the committee ensure that required courses still build on essential skills while giving students flexibility in their education?
    P. T


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