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Opinion: General education courses important or unnecessary? - The Trail Blazer: News

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Opinion: General education courses important or unnecessary?

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Posted: Sunday, October 22, 2017 3:03 pm

General education classes are college courses that typically cover core academics such as mathematics and science. Students are required to take a certain number of courses in general education, with the exact number differing between schools.

In some ways, gen eds makes sense and serve a good purpose. Obviously, learning things that could generally be useful down the road is never a bad thing. People unsure of what they want to specialize in can also fall back on gen eds while they make a decision.

The issue comes when one considers a typical student’s situation. Between tuition, course fees, textbooks and other supplies, college is expensive. For how much it takes to get into a course, students should be focusing on classes relevant to their major. Being a Convergent Media major that has spent several hundreds of dollars and hours on science courses has never sat right with me.

There also comes the issue of grades. College grades serve as a reflection of how one improved over the course of a semester. While this is fine for relevant courses, having one’s GPA suffer due to a required gen ed is frustrating at least and detrimental at most.

So, can this be fixed, and how do we do it? Measurements are being taken to help aid the problem. Morehead State University and other campuses already offer certain gen ed courses in high schools for people who want to get them done ahead of time.

According to Christopher Schroeder of MSU's General Education Review Task Force, the gen ed program for campus is also being reworked to fit student demands while staying within regulations.

“We’ve got a lot of different ideas that we’re considering.” said Schroeder. “We’re trying to coalesce those into one coherent gen ed plan.”

As of now, MSU requires 36 credit hours of general education courses which roughly translates to 12 classes. One option the Task Force is considering is lowering the requirement to 30 hours, or 10 classes.

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