The GEIR (General Education and Institutional Requirements) is structured to provide a coherent, integrated liberal arts education to a diverse population. The purpose of the GEIR is to assist students in developing their personal capabilities in such a way as to reach the highest level of personal achievement and to make their maximum contribution to society. A flexible program of general courses and major requirements is designed to enable students to acquire a broad general education and competence in a field of concentration. In particular, the general education program aims to:
- teach students the skills needed for writing, speaking, reading, and critical thinking;
- develop students’ knowledge bases in the natural sciences, social sciences, and humanities as a background for understanding the problems facing them as human beings;
- teach students how to apply their skills and knowledge so that they can find, evaluate, and use the vast amount of available information;
- develop a historical consciousness and an appreciation for the arts;
- discern and evaluate the values that shape responsible members of society;
- develop an interest in lifetime wellness; and
- teach students to become independent, lifelong learners.
This Program will provide a sound basis for skills required in all majors, as well as the analytical skills and the cultural and intercultural awareness required of all college-educated individuals. Recognizing that many students, particularly in their early years in college, are undecided about their career choices, the general education program will further increase their awareness of career opportunities available to them and help them to make decisions in their best interests.
The GEIR is developed in conformance with the guidelines of the University System of Maryland (USM) and the Maryland Higher Education Commission (MHEC). Because of an ongoing evaluation by the University, USM, and MHEC, changes may occur in the general education requirements. Every attempt will be made to notify the student when these changes occur. However, “the General Education Program a student takes at one public college or university will transfer without further review to another public institution without the need for a course-to-course match. That is, courses defined as general education by one institution will transfer as general education even if the receiving institution does not offer that specific course or has not designated that course as general education.” This policy applies to State of Maryland institution as stated in the COMAR General Education Standards for General Education courses.
Departments may select and recommend to the Schools’ and University Curriculum Committees additional courses for approval as general education requirements.
Effective Fall 2017, the English Proficiency Examination will no longer be a graduation requirement for students with the admit term of Fall 2017.