When most students come to college they are surprised to learn that they have to take classes that are unrelated to their major. Most students are required to take an English, math, art, or communication class. Why do students need to take more general education classes after four years of high school?
Southern New Hampshire University states that, “General education courses can reshape your outlook on learning, teach you soft skills and introduce you to a variety of disciplines.”
Even though students may be taking classes that do not pertain whatsoever to their intended major, the information they obtain can still be important to their future careers.
“[General education] is meant to foster greater accessibility, a clear and relevant academic pathway for students to attain their degree credential and to provide students with the necessary core skills in order to be successful in their lives and chosen career paths” said Anthony Siciliano, associate vice president of general education, first-year experience, education and special programs at SNHU.
For common majors, such as business, nursing and communications, taking general education classes such as math and English can greatly help students to benefit future careers.
“I think general education classes are important because even though they don’t apply to your major, you are learning basic information you can use throughout your college career. The classes also can give you an idea of if you want to stay with the major you picked or change to something else” said a student when asked how they felt about general education classes.
General education classes can be extremely beneficial to college students. They can help them to develop skills they will use not only in their future careers, but in life as well.
Taking general education courses can also help those who may not be that academically strong coming out of high school.
General education courses can also provide students with a chance to refresh their memory before entering classes that are strictly about their intended major.
Although general education classes provide many benefits to one’s education, there are also those who believe that students should not have to take these classes.
Colleges may be able to further the education they provide by removing general education classes.
“Most information that is covered in general education classes has already been covered by the curriculum that most high schools teach,” said a student.
Information that is received in college general education classes may be similar to that learned during high school. The new material learned in college may just be on a higher level.
Some studies show that students who finish the general education courses typically forget 75% of the information by the time they graduate with their degree.
“By removing general education classes students can spend more time focusing on classes that apply to their major. The school can offer more classes towards the major or another minor,” said another student.
General education courses may also require a student to spend more time than necessary at a university just to obtain their degree.