Mar 05, 2024  
2021-2022 General Catalog 
2021-2022 General Catalog ARCHIVED CATALOG: To search archives, use search box above. See current catalog at

General Education Requirements

General Education Requirements

The General Education program, along with study in the major, is designed to assist students in achieving the University Studies Depth Requirements.

Students transferring to Utah State University should see the General Education Requirements for Transfer Students section.

All Utah State University students must complete the following (or approved equivalents):

General Education Requirements (30-34 credits)

USU’s General Education program consists of two sets of requirements: Competency and Breadth.

Competency Requirements (9-10 credits)

The University Studies Depth Requirements  propose that students should be able to communicate effectively, utilize quantitative methods, make appropriate use of technology, and function effectively in groups. The competency requirements are structured to develop these skills.

Communications Literacy (CL1 and CL2) (6 credits)

Quantitative Literacy (QL) (3-4 credits)

One of the following courses:

Breadth Requirements (18-20 credits)

General Education breadth requirements are intended to introduce students to the nature, history, and methods of different disciplines; and to help students understand the cultural, historical, and natural contexts shaping the human experience. Breadth courses also focus on the important cultural, socio-economic, scientific, and technological issues of today’s global community.

Students must take a minimum of 18 total credits, including at least one course from each of the six categories shown below.

Click here to see exceptions to the Breadth Requirements.

Breadth American Institutions (BAI) (3 credits)

One of the following courses:

Breadth Creative Arts (BCA) (3 credits)

One of the following courses:

Breadth Humanities (BHU) (3 credits)

One of the following courses:

Breadth Life Sciences (BLS) (3-4 credits)

One of the following courses:

Breadth Physical Sciences (BPS) (3-4 credits)

One of the following courses:

Breadth Social Sciences (BSS) (3 credits)

One of the following courses:

Integrated Studies Requirement (3-4 credits)

Choose an additional class from one of the following General Education or Depth Education categories: QL, BAI, BCA, BHU, BLS, BPS, BSS, CI, QI, DHA, DSC, or DSS.

Note: Students may use an additional Quantitative Literacy (QL) course to satisfy the Integrated Studies Requirement only if they received college credits for the QL requirement.  Students who had the QL requirement waived as a result of an ACT Math or SAT Math score do not receive any college credit for those exams.  Therefore, these students may not take an additional QL course to satisfy the Integrated Studies Requirement unless they first earn QL credits through coursework or examination. 

Note: The Integrated Studies Requirement is required only for students whose first semester enrolled at USU is Summer Semester 2008 or thereafter.

Designation of Courses that Satisfy General Education Requirements

All courses approved for the General Education Requirements are clearly designated in this catalog. The designations used for General Education courses are as follows:

Competency Courses

  • Communications Literacy, CL1 and CL2
  • Quantitative Literacy, QL

Breadth Courses

  • American Institutions, BAI
  • Creative Arts, BCA
  • Humanities, BHU
  • Life Sciences, BLS
  • Physical Sciences, BPS
  • Social Sciences, BSS

Interstate Passport

The Interstate Passport enables successful transfer of completed lower-division general education Passport courses and learning outcomes to out-of-state institutions participating in the Interstate Passport Network and to all Utah public institutions. Students who complete the Passport at a USHE institution will not be required to repeat or take additional course work to meet lower-division general education requirements when they transfer, except as required by state statutes. Successful completion of Passport courses and learning outcomes will be noted on students’ transcripts. Students with an interest in earning the Interstate Passport should contact their academic advisor.