For students enrolled beginning Fall 2012

All degree programs require the completion of ten 4-credit General Education courses: three Core courses and seven Distribution courses. Students must also complete the Second Language requirement. A Writing in the Discipline requirement is also included in General Education and is a part of each major.

Core Requirement

First Year Seminar (FYS)
FYS 100 is required in the freshman year, with sections on a wide variety of topics. Each section is discussion-based, focused on developing critical thinking, oral communication, research fluency, and written communication. FYS 100 will not be offered in the summer or the early spring sessions. Students who enter the college as transfer students are not considered first-year students and are exempt from this requirement. Courses are limited to at twenty students.

First Year Writing (FYW)
FYW 100 is required in freshman year. It introduces students to college-level writing and helps them develop the writing skills needed for success in college courses. Successful completion of the course (a final grade of C or better) will also meet the college's Writing Requirement. Courses are limited to twenty students.

Connections (C)
Courses in the Connections category are upper-level courses on topics that emphasize comparative perspectives, such as across disciplines, across time, and across cultures. Students must complete the FYS and FYW courses and must have earned at least 45 college credits before taking a Connections course. Connections courses cannot be included in any major or minor program.

Distribution Courses

Distribution courses emphasize ways of thinking and methods of inquiry within various disciplines. Students are required to take one course in each of the following seven areas:

  • Arts – Visual and Performing (A)
  • History (H)
  • Literature (L)
  • Mathematics (M)
  • Natural Science (lab required) (NS)
  • Social and Behavioral Sciences (SB)
  • Advanced Quantitative/Scientific Reasoning (AQSR)

Writing in the Discipline

Building on the core course, FYW, each discipline has identified a required course or courses within the major in which students learn to write for that discipline. Completion of the major/program fulfills the Writing in the Discipline requirement.

Second Language Requirement

Rhode Island College graduates are expected to communicate in and understand a language other than English at a novice-mid proficiency level. The Second Language requirement of General Education is designed to meet that expectation.

The Second Language Requirement may be fulfilled in any of the following ways:

  1. By completing RIC language course 102 (and if needed, the prerequisite 101) or higher (based on departmental placement test results) with a minimum grade of C.
  2. Through transfer credit of language courses equivalent to 101 and 102 or higher from an accredited college or university.
  3. Through transfer credit of a second language course from an approved study abroad program.
  4. Through Advanced Placement (AP) credit. If students score three or higher on the AP Test in French, German, or Spanish, RIC will award 6 credits (equivalent to RIC language courses 113 and 114).
  5. Through Early Enrollment Program credit for language courses 113 or 114.
  6. By completing the CLEP Test in French, German, or Spanish, with a score on the Level I test of 50 or higher.
  7. By completing the ACTFL Oral Proficiency Interview (OPI) and the written exam for languages for which there are no CLEP or AP Tests. Level: OPI (offered in 65 languages): Novice Mid to High. Written test: Novice High (offered in twelve languages).
  8. By completing the SAT II Subject Test (scores vary according to language)
  9. Foreign/international students may submit an official high school transcript from a non-English-speaking country of origin.

Don't know what language course to take? Take the Language Placement Test. This test is only offered in three languages and it tells students what level to take.

General Education Categories

Courses that fulfill General Education requirements have the appropriate notation in the course description following credit hours:

Gen. Ed. Category A (Arts – Visual and Performing)
Gen. Ed. Category AQSR (Advanced Quantitative/Scientific Reasoning)
Gen. Ed. Category C (Connections)
Gen. Ed. Category FYS (First Year Seminar)
Gen. Ed. Category FYW (First Year Writing)
Gen. Ed. Category H (History)
Gen. Ed. Category L (Literature)
Gen. Ed. Category M (Mathematics)
Gen. Ed. Category NS (Natural Science)
Gen. Ed. Category SB (Social and Behavioral Sciences)

Transfer Students

Transfer Students may determine their status with respect to General Education requirements by inquiring at the Office of Undergraduate Admissions or at the office of the Associate Dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences. The college’s admissions website, at contains uselful information

Core Courses

Course No. Course Title Credits

First Year Seminar (FYS)

FYS 100First year Seminar4
Course No. Course Title Credits

First Year Writing (FYW)

FYW 100Introduction to Academic Writing4
Course No. Course Title Credits

Connections (C)

Connections courses cannot be included in any major or minor program.
AFRI 262Cultural Issues in Africana Studies4
ANTH 265Anthropological Perspectives on Childhood4
ANTH 266Anthropological and Indigenous Perspectives on Place4
ART 261Art and Money4
BIOL 261The World's Forests4
COMM 261Issues in Free Speech4
COMM 263East Asian Media and Popular Culture4
ENGL 262Women, Crime, and Representation4
ENGL 263Zen - East and West4
ENGL 265Women's Stories Across Cultures4
GED 263The Holocaust and Genocide4
GED 264Multicultural Views: Same Sex Orientation and Transsexuality4
GED 265Disability Viewed Through Cross-Cultural Lenses4
GED 268Bullying Viewed from Multicultural Lifespan Perspectives4
GEND 261Resisting Authority: Girls of Fictional Futures4
GEOG 261Globalization, Cities and Sustainability4
HIST 267Europe and Beyond: Historical Reminiscences4
HIST 268Civil Rights and National Liberation Movements4
HIST 269Jazz and Civil Rights: Freedom Sounds4
HIST 272Globalization 15th Century to the Present4
HIST 273Latin America and Globalization, 1492-Present4
HIST 275Russia from Beginning to End4
MUS 261Music and Multimedia4
PHIL 262Freedom and Responsibility4
PHIL 263The Idea of God4
POL 266Investing in the Next Global Economy4
POL 267Immigration, Citizenship, and National Identity4
SOC 261Fountain of Age4
SOC 262Sociology of Money4
SOC 264Sex and Power: Global Gender Inequality4
SOC 267Comparative Perspectives on Higher Education4
THTR 261Contemporary Black Theatre: Cultural Perspectives4

Distribution Courses

Course No. Course Title Credits

Advanced Quantitative/Scientific Reasoning (AQSR)

One Course From
ANTH 306Primate Ecology and Social Behavior4
ANTH 307Human Nature: Evolution, Ecology, and Behavior4
BIOL 221Genetics4
BIOL 335Human Physiology4
CHEM 104General Chemistry II4
CHEM 106General, Organic, and Biological Chemistry II4
CSCI 423Analysis of Algorithms4
GEOG 201Mapping Our Changing World4
GEOG 205Earth's Physical Environments4
HSCI 232Human Genetics4
MATH 213Calculus II4
MATH 248Business Statistics I4
MATH 324College Geometry4
PHIL 220Logic and Probability in Scientific Reasoning4
PHYS 102General Physics II4
PHYS 201Electricity and Magnetism4
POL 300Methodology in Political Science4
PSCI 208Forensic Science4
SOC 302Social Research Methods I4
SOC 404Research Methods II4
Course No. Course Title Credits

Arts – Visual and Performing Category (A)

Once Course from
ART 101Drawing I: General Drawing4
ART 104Design I4
ART 201Introduction to Visual Arts4
ART 210Nurturing Artistic and Musical Development4
ART 231Prehistoric to Renaissance Art4
ART 232Renaissance to Modern Art4
COMM 241Introduction to Cinema and Video4
DANC 215Contemporary Dance and Culture4
ENGL 113Approaches to Drama4
FILM 116Approaches to Film and Film Criticism4
MUS 201Survey of Music4
MUS 203Elementary Music Theory4
MUS 225History of Jazz4
PHIL 230Aesthetics4
THTR 240Appreciation and Enjoyment of the Theatre4
THTR 242Acting for Non-Majors4
Course No. Course Title Credits


HIST 101Multiple Voices: Africa in the World4
HIST 102Multiple Voices: Asia in the World4
HIST 103Multiple Voices: Europe in the World to 16004
HIST 104Multiple Voices: Europe in the World since 16004
HIST 105Multiple Voices: Latin America in the World4
HIST 106Multiple Voices: Muslim Peoples in the World4
HIST 107Multiple Voices: The United States in the World4
Course No. Course Title Credits


ENGL 100Studies in Literature4
ENGL 120Studies in Literature and Identity4
ENGL 121Studies in Literature and Nation4
ENGL 122Studies in Literature and the Canon4
ENGL 123Studies in Literature and Genre4
FREN 115Literature of the French Speaking World4
ITAL 115Literature of Italy4
SPAN 115Literature of the Spanish Speaking World4
PORT 115Literature of the Portuguese-Speaking World4
Course No. Course Title Credits

Mathematics Category (M)

One Course From
MATH 139Contemporary Topics in Mathematics4
MATH 177Quantitative Business Analysis I4
MATH 209Precalculus Mathematics4
MATH 212Calculus I4
MATH 240Statistical Methods I4

Note: completion of the Mathematics Category of General Education does not satisfy the College Mathematics Requirement.

Note: Students in the elementary education curriculum who complete MATH 144 (and its prerequisite, MATH 143) shall be considered to have fulfilled the Mathematics Category of General Education.

Course No. Course Title Credits

Natural Science Category (NS)

One Course From
BIOL 100Fundamental Concepts of Biology4
BIOL 108Basic Principles of Biology4
BIOL 111Introductory Biology I4
CHEM 103General Chemistry I4
CHEM 105General, Organic, and Biological Chemistry I4
PSCI 103Physical Science4
PSCI 210Introduction to Astronomy4
PSCI 212Introduction to Geology4
PSCI 217Introduction to Oceanography4
PHYS 101General Physics I4
PHYS 110Introductory Physics4
PHYS 200Mechanics4
Course No. Course Title Credits

Social and Behavioral Sciences Category (SB)

AFRI 200Introduction to Africana Studies4
ANTH 101Introduction to Cultural Anthropology4
ANTH 102Introduction to Archaeology4
ANTH 104Introduction to Anthropological Linguistics4
ANTH 205Race, Culture, and Ethnicity: Anthropological Perspectives4
COMM 240Mass Media and Society4
ECON 200Introduction to Economics4
GEND 200Gender and Society4
GEOG 100Introduction to Environmental Studies4
GEOG 101Introduction to Geography4
GEOG 200World Regional Geography4
GEOG 206Disaster Management4
POL 202American Government4
POL 203Global Politics4
POL 204Introduction to Political Thought4
PSYC 110Introduction to Psychology4
PSYC 215Social Psychology4
SOC 200Society and Social Behavior4
SOC 202The Family4
SOC 204Urban Sociology4
SOC 207Crime and Criminal Justice4
SOC 208Minority Group Relations4
SOC 217Aging and Society4

Note: Students in the elementary education curriculum who complete POL 201 shall be considered to have fulfilled the Social and Behavioral Sciences Category of General Education.

Page last updated: October 17, 2014