General Education Courses, Three-Unit Standard

Recommended By
Academic Senate
Ruben Armiñana, President
Issue Date
Wednesday, February 1, 2012
Current Issue Date
Wednesday, February 8, 2012
Effective Date
Wednesday, February 1, 2012
Contact Office
Academic Affairs
Policy number

General Education at Sonoma State University is a 48-50 unit program of interrelated courses, taken mostly at the lower-division level. It gives a broad, balanced educational foundation for the more specialized work of the major. 

The guiding principle is that students should be able to complete their GE curriculum within 50 units. New GE structures, new courses, and changes to course unit values are allowed, as long as the guiding principle is maintained. Since some courses double count for both GE and majors, the GE Program has historically accepted a limited number of courses into the Program that may cause students to take more than 50 units.

For Areas D and E, which contain both 3 and 4 unit courses in their current structure yet are designed for only 3 units courses, additional units shall be limited by the GE subcommittee to an average of 1 unit per student via a “cap and trade” system on all available seats in Areas D and E. To accomplish this, the GE subcommittee will assess the number of 3 and 4-unit seats available to students in area D and E on a semester by semester basis. The GE committee will approve new 4-unit courses only if they are pedagogically justified and the 3-unit seat % minimum of 83.3% (equivalent to 1 added unit per student on average) is maintained. If 3 unit % falls below the limit, the GE subcommittee will work with the Schools to realign seat offerings before any further 4 unit courses are approved.

Twelve-unit General Education seminars in the Hutchins School of Liberal Studies are excluded from this policy.

Updated 2/8/12 by