The University Undergraduate Core Curriculum

Fall 2013 and Forward Requirements

The University core curriculum, which is required of all incoming students beginning Fall, 2013 is a set of common learning outcomes required of all undergraduate students. It acts as a mechanism by which all Purdue University students share a similar educational experience and, in doing so, achieve a set of common goals.

The core curriculum consists of two levels of learning outcomes: foundational and embedded. All undergraduate students must meet the foundational learning outcomes, which are the same for all students, regardless of discipline or major. Students will meet each foundational outcome through completion of approved course offerings which have been approved by the University Core Curriculum Committee. Embedded learning outcomes, by contrast, are included in the core requirements of particular degrees or plans of study and are addressed within discipline-specific programs and majors.

Students must complete a minimum of 30 credit hours satisfying the specific foundational learning outcomes. There is no credit requirement for embedded learning outcomes, which will be assessed at the college/school level. Students may meet embedded outcomes by completing identified courses and/or targeted activities as determined by their program of study. 

Why a Core Curriculum at Purdue University?

The central motivation behind the core curriculum is to better prepare all Purdue students for future employment success and responsible citizenship. Recent studies indicate employers are seeking employees with a broad set of skills beyond their discipline-specific abilities. A well-rounded, broad-based core curriculum will ensure this need is fulfilled.

Two additional factors support the implementation of a core curriculum: new accreditation requirements and recent legislative initiatives. The Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools recently updated accreditation mandates that require institutions maintain a minimum requirement for general education. Additionally, Indiana Senate Bill (SB 0192) requires state educational institutions to create a statewide transfer general education core to be implemented by May 15, 2013. Purdue's core curriculum fulfills both of these requirements.

Advisor and Student Guidelines document 

Expected Outcomes

The learning outcomes of the core curriculum are divided into two categories: foundational and embedded. All undergraduate students must meet the foundational learning outcomes, which are the same for all students, regardless of discipline or major. Embedded learning outcomes are included in the core requirements of particular degrees or plans of study and are addressed within courses or activities identified within a specific discipline.

Foundational Learning Outcomes
Outcome Requirements
1. Written Communication One course
2. Information Literacy One course
3. Oral Communication One course
4. Science Two courses
5. Science, Technology and Society One course
6. Mathematics/Quantitative Reasoning One course (minimum College Algebra)
7. Human Cultures:  Humanities One course
8. Human Cultures:  Behavioral & Social Sciences One course

*All students must complete a minimum of 30 credit hours within the foundational core to meet Indiana's Statewide Transfer General Education Core Curriculum. If a student satisfies all five required foundational areas and has earned fewer than 30 credits, he or she must complete an additional course(s) from any foundational area in order to meet the minimum state requirement of 30 credit hours. However, if a student satisfies all five required foundational areas in fewer than 30 credit hours and remains at the Purdue-West Lafayette campus through graduation, he or she will be considered as having completed the core curriculum. The requirement for 30 credit hours applies only when the student may transfer to another Indiana institution and wants his/her core curriculum to count.

Alignment of Indiana's Statewide Transfer General Education Core and Purdue's Core Curriculum

Statewide Transfer General Education Core FAQs

Embedded Learning Outcomes
1. Communication Faculty within each program area will be responsible for determining where and at what level embedded outcomes will be met within their programs.  In addition, program area faculty will be solely responsible for assessing student learning on embedded outcomes within their courses.
2. Ways of Thinking
3. Interpersonal Skills and Intercultural Knowledge

 

For University Senate document 11-7 (original 2012) establishing the Purdue University outcomes-based undergraduate core curriculum, please click here.

For University Senate document 11-7 (revised 2015) establishing the Purdue University outcomes-based undergraduate core curriculum, please click here.

For a complete description of all foundational and embedded learning outcomes (revised 2015), please click here.

The seven Foundational Outcomes and approved course lists may be found at the Course Listing website.

 

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Student Advising Office: (765) 494-1771, Fax: (765) 496-3015 • Science IT, (765) 494-4488

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