Several University Curriculum (UC) changes are coming for the Class of 2020, including an additional Foundation Requirement, an overhaul of the pillar system and a reduction of Proficiencies and Experiences requirements.
The changes, titled UC 2016, have been in the works since early January as The Daily Campus reported. The new curriculum “aims to fill the deficiencies found in the current version of the UC,” originally adapted in Fall 2012.
“This only affects students coming in the fall,” Peter Moore, senior associate dean for general education, said. “Whatever is in place now will hold for everyone who’s currently a student.”
The main visual change in the UC 2016 is the transition from Pillar I and Pillar II requirements to “Breadth” and “Depth” requirements. The titles of these courses will also change to three categories of Humanities and Fine Arts; Natural and Mathematical Sciences; and History, Social and Behavioral Sciences.
“The building imagery wasn’t being very helpful…to parents and prospective students,” Moore said. “So we wanted to go with language that we felt would be better for incoming students and their parents.”
Within the Breadth Requirements, students must complete all seven subcategories: Creativity and Aesthetics (CA), Philosophical and Religious Inquiry and Ethics (PRIE), Language and Literature (LL), Historical Contexts (HC), Individuals, Institutions and Cultures (IIC), Technology and Mathematics (TM) and Science and Engineering (SE).
Within the Depth Requirements students must complete all three categories of Humanities and Fine Arts (HFA), History, Social and Behavioral Sciences (HSBS) and Natural and Applied Science (NAS).
Moore said double counting will still be in play, but the UC 2016 will be a “little bit more restrictive.” For example, EE1301, which currently satisfies the Pure and Applied Sciences Pillar, is expected to change to satisfy the Technology and Mathematics Pillar.
The Foundation Requirements will remain the same with the addition of a Second Language (SL) requirement to the four other foundational categories. Moore said this will actually be easier for incoming students, as many are required to complete a language requirement for admission to SMU.
The Proficiencies and Experiences requirement will be reduced from eight to six. Students will be required to complete the Human Diversity (HD), Information Literacy (IL), Oral Communication (OC) and Writing (W) categories; in addition, they must complete two additional requirements of their choosing from Community Engagement (CE), Global Engagement (GE), Quantitative Reasoning (QE), 2nd Oral Communication and 2nd Writing.
The Registrar’s Office will be working this summer to re-code classes for the UC 2016. According to Moore, my.SMU will have options for students to select the 2012 or 2016 curriculum when signing up for classes.
Moore said that requirements in the UC 2016 will be about the same for all majors, but with less requirements needed for those in Lyle.
“It’s probably not that much different for students than the current version,” he said. “It is easier in terms of the language requirement, but in terms of the total credit count it is about the same. It depends on what area they are in.”
The UC 2016 will be officially implemented with the Class of 2020 in Fall 2016.