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Academics

Academics

General Degree Requirements

Undergraduate General Degree Requirements

The requirements for degrees described in this catalog are applicable to students currently enrolled. Although students have the right to complete requirements under their catalog of entry, students who change their programs of study must meet requirements that exist at the time they make the change, except that core curriculum requirements (Areas A-E) completed before the change will satisfy similar core requirements. No student will be placed under undue penalty in meeting the requirements. The university reserves the right to change the degree requirements at any time, but no such change will be administered to cause a loss in credit for work already completed.

Each student is assigned an academic advisor. The faculty advisement system is designed to provide the student with effective academic advisement throughout enrollment at Columbus State University. Although academic advisors make every effort to inform students about course and degree requirements, the primary responsibility for meeting all degree requirements rests with the student.

General Education Competencies

Columbus State University identifies four specific college-level competencies that are expected to be developed further throughout the completion of the general education program:

  • Communication
  • Critical thinking
  • Quantitative reasoning
  • Collaboration

Students demonstrate their competency in communication  when they use one or more media (traditional pen and paper or digital) and modes (oral or written) to meet the expectations of a particular audience and for a particular purpose, such as information transfer or persuasion to action. 
 
Students demonstrate their competency in critical thinking  when they can explain a complex problem; interpret and evaluate evidence related to significant positions surrounding a problem; expose implicit assumptions related to significant positions surrounding a problem; stake a position related to a problem, recognizing advantages and limitations to the perspective; and organize this series of intellectual activities in meaningful ways. 

Students demonstrate their competency in quantitative reasoning  when they can solve real-world problems in authentic contexts that involve numerical data. 

Students demonstrate their competency in collaboration  when they respect and can articulate alternate ideas during team idea generation; facilitates the contributions of other team members; contributes to the team beyond team gatherings; nurtures a positive team climate; and addresses team conflict productively.

General Education Learning Outcomes

The core curriculum (Areas A-E) and the major-related core courses (Area F) support Columbus State University's general education learning outcomes:

Learning Goal A1 (Communications)

  1. Write effectively in a variety of situations and for a variety of audiences.
  2. Use primary and secondary research to analyze and present information in rhetorically appropriate ways.
  3. Use a nationally recognized system of scholarly documentation, such as MLA or APA.

Learning Goal A2 (Quantitative)

Solve problems by analyzing:

  1. a given dataset, formulating a representative model, and then using the model to predict additional related values of the variables; or
  2. a given graph and identifying behaviors of one variable as influenced by changes in the other variable; or
  3. a given equation and identifying fundamental characteristics of the corresponding graph.

Learning Goal B (Institutional Options: Communicating in a Global Environment)

Demonstrate an ability to communicate effectively verbally and non-verbally in various contexts.

Learning Goal C (Humanities/Fine Arts/Ethics)

Generate knowledgeable interpretations of texts, works of art, or music.

Learning Goal D (Natural Sciences)

  1. Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of key principles, theories, facts and current hypotheses in one or more areas of natural science.
  2. Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of scientific reasoning and how new knowledge is acquired in one or more areas of science, including the selection and use of appropriate methods, tools, and technology for answering questions and solving problems.
  3. Relate scientific principles and methods to problems that are important to individuals and societies.

Learning Goal E (Social Sciences)

  1. Assess the environmental, political, economic, behavioral, or cultural factors that shape human activity across time and space.
  2. Apply methods of inquiry, evaluate arguments, and draw conclusions in the social sciences.

Area A completion requirements

Students who have earned 30 hours but have not completed Area A must enroll in the next course necessary to make progress toward completing this Area in every semester in which they take classes. For students with Learning Support requirements in reading, writing, or math, enrolling in the required Learning Support course(s) counts as making progress toward completion of Area A.

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Wellness Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the wellness program, students will demonstrate the:

  • Ability to understand principles related to the development and maintenance of wellness behaviors and life-long fitness;
  • Ability to develop skills and to select practices and activities that contribute to lifetime health-enhancing behaviors;
  • Ability to develop, to implement, to monitor, and to evaluate a personal fitness and wellness program.

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General University Requirements

The following general requirements are applicable for all programs leading to an undergraduate degree:

  • Credit Hour Requirements - A minimum of 123 semester credit hours for a baccalaureate degree or 63 semester credit hours for an associate degree. Baccalaureate degrees require 39 semester hours of upper division coursework (numbered 3000 or above).
  • Grade Point Average Requirements - A minimum Columbus State University degree progress grade point average of 2.0 and a minimum combined Columbus State University and transfer college degree progress grade point average of 2.0.
  • General Education Requirements - for the baccalaureate degree, completion of Core Areas A through F. Transfer students who have completed any core area (Areas A-F) at another University System of Georgia institution will have completed the same core area at CSU, so long as the student's major remains the same. Students who have received an associate degree from another University System of Georgia institution will have satisfied the total core at CSU (Areas A-F), so long as the student's major remains the same.
  • Legislative Requirements- An act of the General Assembly of the State of Georgia requires that all candidates for degrees possess and demonstrate knowledge of U.S. History, Georgia History, U.S. Constitution, and Georgia Constitution. The following courses, when taken at Columbus State University, will satisfy the requirements.
    • U.S. History Requirement - HIST 2111 or HIST 2112
    • Georgia History Requirement - HIST 2111 or HIST 2112 or HIST 3105
    • U.S. Constitution Requirement - POLS 1101
    • Georgia Constitution Requirement - POLS 1101 or POLS 2201

Note: Transfer credit for history and government courses may not satisfy the legislative requirements. Students who transfer credit that does not satisfy these requirements may take a proficiency examination or the courses listed above.

  • Residency Requirements:
    • Baccalaureate - A minimum of 25% of credit hours must be earned at Columbus State University, of which 20 hours must be obtained at in the upper division level in the major.  CSU online courses can be used to meet the residency requirement.
    • Associate - A minimum of 25% of credit hours must be earned at Columbus State University in order to meet the residency requirement for an Associate degree.  CSU online courses can be used to meet the residency requirement.
  • Wellness Requirement- For all degree programs, completion of wellness course requirements: PHED 1205 and one PEDS activity course. Transfer students who have satisfied an established wellness requirement at another University System of Georgia institution will have satisfied the wellness requirement at CSU. Courses taken at other institutions for partial completion of the wellness requirement will be substituted for equivalent CSU courses.
    • Wellness Exemptions:
      • Students with at least 12 consecutive months of active military service.
      • Students 40 years of age or older. (Older students may take related courses, but must have medical clearance to participate in courses requiring moderate-intensity exercise).
      • Students with severe physical disabilities. (Medical verification should be obtained through the CSU Office of Center for Accommodation and Access).
  • Information Literacy Requirement - For all undergraduate degree programs, demonstration of proficiency in Information Literacy is required.
    • Information Literacy isa set of abilities enabling individuals to recognize when information is needed and have the ability to locate synthesize, evaluate, and effectively use the needed information. Students are expected to satisfy the following proficiencies:
      • The student should be able to determine the nature and extent of the information needed
      • The student should be able to access needed information effectively and efficiently
      • The student should be able to evaluate information and its sources critically and incorporate selected information into his or her knowledge base and value system
      • The student should be able, individually or as a member of a group, to use information effectively to accomplish a specific purpose
      • The student should understand many of the economic, legal, and social issues surrounding the use of information and be able to access and use information ethically and legally
    • ENGL 1102, when taken at Columbus State University, will satisfy the Information Literacy requirement
      • Transfer students who have taken ENGL 1102 elsewhere but have not satisfied the Information Literacy requirement, must either successfully complete the Information Literacy Test administered by the Testing Center
        -OR-
      • enroll in and successfully complete LIBR 1105 (with a grade of D or better)
    • Information Literacy test policy: Students may take the test twice. If the student fails the test for a second time, remediation will be required. Students will be allowed to take the test for a 3rd time after remediation. Upon failing the test for a 3rd time, the student will be required to take the appropriate course.
  • Bachelor of Arts Language Requirement - For the BA, the demonstration of proficiency in a foreign language by the satisfactory completion in a foreign language through at least the 2001 course or the equivalent. Students whose secondary education was conducted in a language other than English may be awarded up to nine semester hours of foreign language credit toward a BA degree. Students who think they may qualify for this credit should contact the chair of the Department of Modern & Classical Languages.

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Freshman Year Experience

All full-time, first year students with fewer than 30 credit hours are required to have a Freshman Year Experience designed to introduce students to the culture and expectations of university academics. The Freshman Year Experience can be satisfied by participation in a Freshman Learning Community or a first year seminar (FYRS 1105).

Freshman Learning Communities allow students to enroll courses with peers who share a common academic or career interest. The freshman-level courses in the learning communities are tailored to a common theme or specific academic discipline and usually have lower enrollments.

First-Year Seminar (FYRS 1105) is designed to help freshmen achieve academic and personal goals by developing links between students and faculty, enhancing skills necessary for academic success, exploring global issues and perspectives, and promoting involvement in university life.

To satisfy the First Year Experience requirement, all first-year students must enroll in a freshman learning community or a section of the freshman seminar FYRS 1105 before completion of 30 credit hours. Students are highly encouraged to select the learning community option. Students assigned to the Department of Basic Studies must enroll in FYRS 1105 to satisfy this requirement.

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Transfer Associate Degrees

The associate of science transfer program is designed to facilitate transfer into baccalaureate degree programs. Consequently, the minimum 63 semester credit hours required consists of 42 semester credit hours in the core curriculum (Areas A-E), 18 credit hours in the area of study designated in Area F and three semester credit hours of wellness courses. This program is limited to the Associate of Science in general studies.

A special variation of this degree is available under the provisions of the Servicemen's Opportunity College Program. Columbus State University is a member of SOC and participates with the Associate of Science in general studies. The variation in degree requirements for military personnel is the reduction in resident hours to 15 semester credit hours of work to be taken at Columbus State University.

Career Associate Degrees

Career associate degree programs include the associate of applied science programs. These programs are designed to meet specific needs of students preparing for employment in specialized fields. Such programs require careful and continued counseling by an assigned academic advisor. Of the minimum 63 semester credit hours required for an associate degree, the career associate degree programs require at least 21 credit hours of general education course work and three semester credit hours of wellness courses or approved substitutions. Students must complete all degree requirements for this program before seeking a baccalaureate degree from Columbus State University.

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Additional Degree Policy

In order for a student to earn both an associate and baccalaureate degrees in the same discipline, all requirements for the associate degree must be satisfied at least two semesters before requirements for the baccalaureate degree are satisfied. Otherwise, only the baccalaureate degree will be awarded. Further, any student graduating from Columbus State University with a baccalaureate degree cannot concurrently receive an Associate of Science degree in general studies.

To earn an additional baccalaureate degree in a significantly different discipline (as determined by the dean of the college offering the degree sought), students must meet the following requirements:

  • Have earned a baccalaureate degree at Columbus State University or at another accredited institution.
  • Meet all major program requirements for the degree sought with a minimum of 36 semester hours of work taken at Columbus State University, of which 30 semester hours must be at the upper-division level, and a minimum degree progress grade point average of 2.0.
  • Satisfy the U.S. and Georgia history and constitutions requirements if the prior degree is not from a University System of Georgia institution. Refer to General University Requirements for ways to satisfy these requirements.
  • Satisfy Information Literacy Requirements.

To earn an additional associate degree in a significantly different discipline (as determined by the dean of the college offering the degree sought), students must meet the following requirements:

  • Have earned an associate degree at Columbus State University or at another accredited institution.
  • Meet all program requirements for the degree sought with a minimum of 21 semester credit hours of additional work in residence at Columbus State University and a minimum degree progress grade point average of 2.0.
  • Satisfy the U.S. and Georgia history and constitutions requirements if the prior degree is not from a University System of Georgia institution. Refer to General University Requirements for ways to satisfy these requirements.

Students seeking two baccalaureate degrees or two associate degrees simultaneously must meet the above requirements for the additional degree. If the two disciplines are not significantly different, the student may seek a double major. Contact the Office of the Registrar for further information on double degrees and double majors.

Graduate General Degree Requirements

See the specific College/Department for information regarding general degree requirements for graduate programs.

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