Faculty Information

General Education Alignment

Weber State's Gen Ed Program needs to align to Board Policy R470, General Education, which was recently revised and approved by the Utah Board of Higher Education. The R470 policy updates are significant and include a new minimum credit requirement, new essential learning outcomes, and newly engaged Area Working Groups to involve representatives from all USHE institutions in revising essential learning outcomes (ELOs) for each Gen Ed area. These ELOs are the guide for Weber State’s core and breadth area learning outcomes.

R470 now constrains Gen Ed to a minimum of 27-30 credits, with a minimum of 12 credits in the Core (two courses in Composition, one course in American Institutions, and one course in Quantitative Literacy) and 15 credits in the Breadth (one course in each of the five breadth areas, Life Science, Physical Science, Creative Arts, Humanities, and Social Science). In addition, institutions can require up to 3 credits in an optional “Institutional Area” (IA) requirement.

What are the implications for Weber State?

WSU’s Gen Ed program currently requires at least 37 credits (13 core, 24 breadth). Thus, we have to reduce Gen Ed by 10 credits (1 in core and 9 in breadth, for the minimum of 27 credits) or 7 credits (if we use the IA requirement, for the minimum of 30), and align our Gen Ed ALOs with new R470 ELOs.

Please read this handout to explore the implications for Weber State and timeline, as well as to share your feedback. 


What is General Education Revitalization all about?

General Education Revitalization is an opportunity for faculty to offer students a more meaningful and coherent general education curriculum. After years of faculty development and pilot testing, revitalization efforts were fully implemented effective Fall 2019. Since that time, all Gen Ed courses engage students in a common activity in order to realize four shared Gen Ed program outcomes (GELOs).

This common activity includes framing Gen Ed courses around a “Big Question” (BQ) that taps into the heart of the discipline and helps students see what they can do with what they are learning, which is explored through a “Signature Assignment” (SA). For example, Gen Ed courses address BQ like "Does art reflect culture or shape it?", "Are mathematical ideas inventions or discoveries?", "What is the good life?", "Why do some countries democratize while others do not?", and "How can I sort out psychological myth from reality?". SAs require that students integrate and apply (GELO 4) course content (GELO 1) to address a personal, social, or professional issue (GELO 3) through the exercise of intellectual tools (GELO 4) for a specified audience.

Where can I get more information?

Faculty can find instructions to develop SA here
Faculty can find a sample "blurb" to put in their syllabus here.
Faculty can contact the Director of General Education for assistance with development and implementation of BQ and SA.