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General Education Guide for Mechanical Engineering

The Purdue University School of Mechanical Engineering curriculum includes a strong component in General Education to provide students an integrated and well-rounded program in the humanities, fine arts, and social sciences. Following completion of the required freshman year courses in written communications (ENGL 106 or other approved option) and oral communications (COM 114 or other approved option), each student, with the assistance of an academic advisor, selects six three-credit hour courses to satisfy the General Education component of the ME curriculum.

Program Requirements

  1. Credit Requirements - A minimum of 18 credit hours in approved humanities and social sciences selectives are required. (A list of preapproved courses is appended below).
  2. Required Selectives - Of the 18 credit hours total, 6 credit hours must satisfy the following required selective categories.
    • Economics Selective (3 crs.) - either ECON 251 Microeconomics or ECON 252 Macroeconomics will satisfy the Economics Selective.
    • World Affairs and Cultures Selective-WAC (3 crs.) - any course on the pre-approved WAC list will satisfy this requirement.
  3. Depth and Breadth Requirements - Within the 18 credit hours, both depth and breadth must be demonstrated.
    • Depth - A minimum of 6 credit hours must be taken in at least one department. This insures depth in at least one department.
    • Breadth - No more than 12 credit hours can be taken in one department. This insures exposure to at least two different departments.
  4. Upper Level Requirement - [Students starting in the School of Mechanical Engineering during the Spring 2017 semester or later] – At least 6 credit hours must come from Upper Level courses. Upper Level courses are considered to be at the 300 level or above or lower-division courses with a required prerequisite in the same department.
  5. Foreign Language Requirement - If a foreign language course is used to satisfy part of the requirements, at least 6 credit hours must be taken in the same language (e.g., to receive credit for SPAN 101 you must complete SPAN 102). Also, credit is not allowed for language courses in the student's native tongue(s), although literature, culture, drama and related courses are allowed.
  6. Integrated Program - To encourage an integrated program, no more than 6 credit hours of general education selectives can be taken in one semester.
  7. Consideration of Exceptions - The appended list of preapproved general education selectives, while extensive, is not exhaustive. To have an unlisted course considered for approval, a written request should be submitted to Professor Jim Jones: jonesjd@purdue.edu.

Selection of a suitable set of humanities and/or social science courses presents some students with a challenge. It is difficult to select 6 courses from among several hundred; a frequently used method is to pick a course which has a reputation for being easy, requiring minimal work, and guaranteeing a high grade. Selecting approximately 15 percent of the total credits required for graduation by this method is not wise. The guidelines listed below are intended to assist in planning an effective General Education program:

  1. Explore Areas of Interest - You should explore different areas in the humanities, fine arts, and social sciences.
  2. Develop a Coherent Program - The program should have a unified framework and constitute a coherent educational experience. You may want to consider getting a minor in one of the departments listed below. If you are interested in a minor, please see the offering department for details of the requirements.
  3. Non-Approved Subjects - Courses treating subjects such as accounting, management, personnel administration, band, and ROTC may be of value to mechanical engineering students but most do not fulfill the purpose of the General Education program.
  4. Grade Options - The pass/not pass option may not be used for any courses required for graduation. All courses counted toward any graduation requirement must be taken for a grade. However, any extra courses not being utilized for graduation may be taken pass/not pass.

PREAPPROVED GENERAL EDUCATION COURSES

Notes:

Introductory courses have an asterisk, Upper Level courses do not have an asterisk.

Appropriate 500 level courses may also be approved by the student’s advisor.

 

Aerospace Studies (AFT): 351, 361

African American Studies (AAS): 271*, 277*, all 300+ level courses

Agricultural Economics (AGEC):  220, 250*, 340, 406, 410, 450

American Sign Language (ASL): 101*, 102, 201, 202, 280*

American Studies (AMST): 201*, 301

Anthropology (ANTH): 100*, 201*, 203*, 204*, 205*, 210*, 212*, 230*, 235*, 282*, all 300+ level courses

Arabic (ARAB): 101*, 102 111*, 112, 201, 202, 230*, 239*, 280*, 281*, all 300+ level courses

Art and Design (AD): 105*, 106, 113*, 114, 117*, 119*, 125*, 130, 146*, 200, 205, 206, 213, 215, 220*, 226*, 227*, 230, 233*, 235, 236*, 240, 242*, 246, 250, 251*, 255*, 256, 260, 262*, 265*, 266*, 267*, 270*, 271*, 275*, 285, all 300+ courses

Chinese (CHNS): 101*, 102, 201, 202, 241, 280*, 281, 285*, all 300+ level courses

Classics (CLCS): 181*, 23010*, 231*, 232*, 233*, 234*, 235*, 237*, 239*, 280*, all 300+ level courses (CLCS 231, CLCS 237, or CLCS 309 cannot be used as Gen Ed if used for Written Communication Selective)

Communication (COM): 102*, 204, 210, 212, 217, 224, 250, 251, 253, 256, all 300+ level courses (COM 217 cannot be used as Gen Ed if used for Oral Communication Selective)

Consumer Sciences and Retailing (CSR): 327, 331, 342

Dance (DANC): 101*, 102*, 103*, 130*, 140*, 144*, 201*, 202*, 203*, 230*, 240*, 250*, all 300+ level or above courses (note: most DANC courses are 1 or 2 credits)

Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences (EAPS): 301, 375

Educational and Psychological Studies (EDPS): 235*, 300, 315 (EDPS 315 cannot be used as Gen Ed if used for Oral Communication Selective), 316, 317

Economics (ECON): 251*, 252*, 300+ level or above courses except for ECON 451

English (ENGL): 203*, 205, 227*, 230*, 231*, 232*, 234*, 235*, 237*, 238*, 240*, 241*, 250*, 257*, 258*, 262*, 264*, 266*, 267*, 276*, 279*, 286, all 300+ level or above courses except for ENGL 421 (ENGL 420 and ENGL 421 cannot both be used to satisfy ME degree requirements)

French (FR): 101*, 102, 112, 201, 202, 212, 241, all 300+ courses

General Studies (GS): 100*, 101*

German (GER): 101*, 102, 112, 201, 202, 212, 223, 224, 230*, 241, 280*, all 300+ level courses

Greek (GREK): 101*, 102, 201, 202, all 300+ level courses

Hebrew (HEBR): 101*, 102, 121*, 122, 201, 202, 221, 222, 284*, all 300+ level courses

History (HIST): 103*, 104*, 105*, 151*, 152*, 201*, 210*, 228*, 229*, 238*, 239*, 240*, 241*, 243*, 245*, 246*, 271*, 272*, all 300+ level courses

Human Development and Family Studies (HDFS): 201*, 210*, all 300+ level courses

Italian (ITAL): 101*, 102, 105*, 201, 202, 205, 212, 231*, 281*, all 300+ or higher courses

Japanese (JPNS): 101*, 102, 201, 202, 241, 280*, all 300+ or higher courses

Jewish Studies (JWST): 330

Latin (LATN): 101*, 102, 201, 202, all 300+ or higher courses

Linguistics (LING): 201*

Music History/Theory (MUSC): 250*, 261*, all 300+ or higher courses

Naval Science (NS): 213*, 214*, 413, 440

Organizational Leadership (OLS): 274*, 284*, 386

Philosophy (PHIL): 110*, 111*, 114*, 120*, 150*, 206*, 207*, 219*, 223*, 225*, 230*, 231*, 240*, 242*, 260*, 270*, 275*, 280*, 290*, 293*, all 300+ above courses (PHIL 260 cannot be used as Gen Ed if used for Written Communication Selective)

Political Science (POL): 101*, 120*, 130*, 141*, 222*, 223*, 229*, 230*, 231*, 235*, 237*, all 300+ level courses

Portuguese (PTGS): 101*, 102, 105*, 201, 202, all 300+ level courses

Psychology (PSY): 120*, 200, 201, 222, 235, 239, 240, 244, 272, 292, +300 level courses

Religious Studies (REL): 200*, 201*, 203*, 230*, 231*, 235*, 300+ level courses

Russian (RUSS): 101*, 102, 111*, 112, 201, 202, 211, 212, 300+ level courses

Sociology (SOC): 100*, 220*, 275*, all 300+ level courses

Spanish (SPAN):  101*, 102, 112*, 201, 202, 212, 235, 241, 280, all 300+ level or above courses (SPAN 330 cannot be used as Gen Ed if used for Written Communication Selective)

Theatre (THTR):  133*, 15001*, 15002*, 15003*, 160*, 161*, 162*, 201*, 213*, 233*, 235*, 253*, 256*, 263*, 270*, 290*, all 300+ level or above courses

Women's Gender and Sexuality Studies (WGSS):  280*, 281*, 282*, all 300+ level or above courses

 

Explore Areas of Interest for General Education »