General Education and Benefits

General education is the part of a student’s curriculum required of all college-going students no matter what their major field or their future career plans. No matter the specific field covered, all general education subjects have many common characteristics. These are discussed below.

Major Compounds of General Education

All curricula of general education have four major components. First, they teach students how to fulfill the skills and knowledge needed for learning. Second, they impart knowledge relevant to the learning process. In this way, they equip students for further performance in academic work, in the workplace, and in life. Finally, they fulfill other functions by preparing the student for further interactions with an others-for example, they prepare students to perform well in sports and other social activities.

The first segment of the general education program deals with basic knowledge and skillsets. Students learn how to learn. This segment generally includes courses such as mathematics, reading, grammar, and composition. They may also learn about history and society, science, technology, and culture. For those who lack a background in science and math, teachers can also provide elective courses such as nursing, environmental studies, and childcare.

Next, students learn how to apply these learning strategies and notions in diverse settings. In this section, the focus is on understanding the perspective of others. By taking the perspective of others, instructors show how people view different social issues and problems. This section of general education courses often makes use of personal experiences from within cultural diversity in order to tell a different story.

Then, students develop skills in cognitive reasoning and problem-solving. By mastering the skills taught in this section of GE, a student becomes better able to analyze and critique ideas and arguments presented in class. A course such as this also builds skills such as persuasive communication, technical competency, and organizational skills. Students may choose to take additional credits in areas such as philosophy of education, social justice, psychology, and sociology. Each of these 30 credits represents one of the areas described above.

The last two areas that are covered in a course are more for the higher-level education of a student who is going into graduate school or professional study. The fourth section of GE, known as the liberal arts curriculum, teaches students how to engage with diverse colleagues in different contexts. It requires strong communication skills, interpersonal skills, and critical thinking abilities. This section is also the basis of some colleges’ liberal arts programs. For example, candidates applying to study at Ivy League universities will have to complete this curriculum in addition to their undergraduate degree.

Career of Student

Finally, for students who already have bachelor’s degrees and are now looking to move their careers from liberal arts to other forms of higher education, they will need to complete a core course in the liberal arts. This core requires 30 credits and is typically required for all students who wish to continue their studies in a liberal arts field. Some examples of topics taught in the core curriculum include literature, American government, history, and history and art.

Each of these areas of the GED is designed to prepare a potential educated person for work requiring further intellectual knowledge. These requirements will also help future employers determine whether or not to hire you and what type of position you would fit in. When considering where to begin your education and which discipline to major in, take a good hard look at which of these General Education courses fit your educational needs the best. Doing so will ensure that you will gain the skills, knowledge, and experience that will prepare you for the life of a future educator.

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