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All students enrolled in a baccalaureate degree program must successfully complete a minimum of 35 credit hours of approved General Studies courses. The General Studies requirement complements the undergraduate major by helping students gain mastery of critical learning skills, investigate the traditional branches of knowledge, and develop the broad perspective that frees one to appreciate diversity and change across time, culture, and national boundaries.
To help students achieve these educational goals, the General Studies Program includes five core areas and three awareness areas. The five core areas help students acquire critical lifelong learning skills and guide their exploration of the traditional branches of knowledge. The three awareness areas promote appreciation of cultural diversity within the contemporary United States, develop an international perspective, and foster an understanding of current human events through study of the past.
The General Studies Council is a standing committee created by the Faculty Senate in 1985 as the decision-making council for the implementation and development of the comprehensive General Studies program of courses required of all ASU undergraduate students. The council, which is advisory to the Provost and University Senate, prepares and maintains the General Studies list of courses.
The General Studies Council approves and disapproves proposals submitted for General Studies designations for courses, and undertakes reviews of approved courses on a regular basis to assure their continued adherence to approved General Studies criteria.