The General Education Core and graduation requirements are based on the conviction that an educated person has access to a shared body of knowledge; a comprehension of the major divisions of learning; and an understanding of the commonality in ways of thinking, of experiencing self, and of acquiring new knowledge and skills. The common body of knowledge focuses broadly on heritage; values; political, economic, and social life; and a relationship with nature. Its study requires critical reading and listening, careful judgment, and clear exposition. The common thread in general education is the interconnectedness of human knowledge.
The General Education Core and graduation requirements, consisting both of specific courses and categories of courses with options, are intended to help students communicate clearly and effectively in standard English; appreciate and understand foreign language(s) both as a means of communication beyond their native language system and as avenues to the literature and cultures of the world; reason clearly and effectively through the application of logic and validated information; develop a clear understanding of the inherited values, ideas, and philosophies of human cultures as they find expression in works of literature, history, philosophy, religion, art, and music; develop a clear understanding of the aims and methods of science; understand the ways in which humans organize for social action and how social institutions shape human behavior; develop a deeper appreciation of the complexities and potentialities of humankind through the study of the human experience from the perspectives of the arts, humanities, and the natural and social sciences; and develop an understanding of imagination and creativity through the application of abstract and intuitive thinking.
Fulfilling the Requirements
The General Education Core and graduation requirements are fulfilled by meeting the specifications listed in the following categories. Students should note that options are provided in nearly all parts of the general education curriculum. Required course work may be challenged by examination. Final approval rests with the dean of the college or school to which a student belongs. Students may seek clarification from the student academic services office in their college or school.
Effective fall 1994, students who have earned an articulated associate in arts (AA) degree from a University of Hawai‘i Community College shall be accepted as having fulfilled the General Education Core requirements at the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa. However, students must also complete all specialized lower division, major, college/school, degree, and graduation requirements. In addition to the core requirements, competency in a second language and five writing-intensive courses are required. With planning, most, if not all, of these requirements may be incorporated into the AA degree; if not, they are required in addition to the associate in arts degree.
Warning: All students should be aware that Manoa’s individual schools and colleges may require specific General Education Core courses to meet their requirements.
Selected studies students and honors students should consult the Honors Program for the honors courses that fulfill the General Education Core and graduation requirements.