The University of Maine at Presque Isle functions on the assumption that all graduates should have a core of education that is common to all students, providing a broad base of knowledge and skills – a key to long term success. UMPI’s General Education Curriculum (GEC) provides that common core. Because minor changes are made to that core on an ongoing basis, UMPI students are expected to fulfill the requirements in place during the academic year that they were admitted. The General Education Curriculum can be found in the Course Catalogue.
Philosophy of the General Education Curriculum
The faculty of the University believes that there exists a certain body of knowledge and skills that every graduate must have regardless of the chosen path in life. This General Education Curriculum, then, represents our best efforts to design a common learning experience for our students that will distinguish them among their peers and prepare them for an uncertain future in a changing society.
The General Education Curriculum familiarizes students with their place in the context of humanity as a whole. A university graduate who views life merely in terms of the here and now would be shortchanged by the institution and unprepared for the diverse world of the 21st century. By providing a broad foundation of information and skills, the Curriculum insures that the graduate not only has knowledge of a major field but also the flexibility to think critically and argue persuasively on a range of issues relevant to personal and professional life. Upon completing the Curriculum, students will also possess self-knowledge and a sensitivity to others that will prepare them to deal competently with personal and social issues. Critical and conceptual thinking, multiculturalism, and acquisition of technical skills are pervasive throughout the educational experience at the University of Maine at Presque Isle.
The General Education Curriculum, then, is not simply a collection of courses representing different disciplines but rather it is a set of courses with common, interrelated aims. The Curriculum strikes a balance between essential bodies of knowledge and the wisdom and skill to employ that knowledge in a variety of ways. The Curriculum synthesizes disciplines to provide a total university experience, producing a liberally educated graduate, regardless of major.
The structural framework of the General Education Curriculum addresses several concepts; some represent a body of knowledge, some skills, and some an intellectual or ethical perspective. The concepts fostered throughout the Curriculum are: literacy; numeracy; personal, social, and cultural awareness; scientific inquiry; and an appreciation of the arts. The courses chosen to address these themes actively engage the student in searching for a place in the larger context of society, culture, history, expression, thought, and human behavior. Ultimately, the Curriculum gives each student, regardless of major, the basis for grasping the complexities of life as a whole and the tools to confront its challenges.
Exemption from GEC
Students entering the University of Maine at Presque Isle as degree seekers who have a completed baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution will receive transfer credit for their previous degree work and will be exempt from meeting the specific requirements of the GEC. This does not exempt them from program requirements; it does exempt them from Placement Testing. Advisors should counsel exempted students to take courses to fill any deficiencies in their general education relevant to their career or future citizenship.
Curriculum Requirements for Specific Programs
Please refer to the academic program for specific course requirements or recommendations regarding the Curriculum. Certain degree requirements may be met by informed choices within the General Education Curriculum. Students should consult with their advisors to make the best choices for their needs and goals.
Students changing majors may be advised to enroll for additional courses from the General Education Curriculum to satisfy their new program requirements.