Bachelor's General Education Requirements (GERs)


Within each academic program major, a UMGC degree incorporates program-specific and core competencies. The following essential core competencies are emphasized across all programs:

  • Effective writing and oral communication
  • The use of information technology
  • Information literacy
  • Mathematical and quantitative reasoning
  • Critical analysis, critical reasoning, and problem solving
  • Understanding of key concepts and principles of natural, social, and behavioral sciences

UMGC conducts learning outcomes assessments to measure and improve your learning in these areas as well as in specific disciplinary knowledge and skills.

Your academic major (and minor, if you choose one) allows you to master a considerable body of knowledge in a specific academic subject area or group of related subjects. Each major provides clearly articulated learning outcomes for the knowledge, skills, and abilities that you are expected to acquire in completing the major.


In general, the UMGC degree requirements that apply to you are those that were in effect when you completed the first credit-bearing course in a given program at UMGC. If you cease to be continuously enrolled, the program requirements that apply to you are those in effect at UMGC when you return to UMGC and enroll in a credit-bearing course for the program you wish to pursue at that time.

To be considered continuously enrolled, you must have had no more than two sequential years of nonenrollment. After two years of nonenrollment, you must apply for admission to resume enrollment.

If you change your degree program while continuously enrolled, then the program requirements that apply to you are those in effect at the time you enroll in the first required course for that program. Previously completed coursework may not apply to the new requirements.

Information about the catalog year that applies to you is provided in the MyUMGC student portal.

The following requirements for the BA and BS are applicable to students who begin continuous enrollment on or after 1 August 2020.

General Education Requirements (41 credits)

Recommendations for fulfilling general education requirements are provided for each major in the recommended sequence.

Note: Any course that may be applied toward a general education requirement may not also be applied toward major, minor, or elective requirements. Courses applied to meet general eduction requirements may not be taken pass/fail.

A. Communications (12 credits)

  • Academic Writing I (3 Credits, WRTG 111) or another writing course (3 credits)
    All 3-credit WRTG courses (except WRTG 288. WRTG 388, WRTG 486A, or WRTG 486B), COMM 390, COMM 492, ENGL 102, and JOUR 201 apply.
  • Academic Writing II (3 Credits, WRTG 112) (3 credits)
    Must be completed with a grade of C- or better within first 24 credits. May not be earned through Prior Learning (Portfolio Assessment or Course Challenge) assessment.
  • A course in communication, writing, or speech (3 credits)
    ENGL 102, ENGL 281, JOUR 201, and all 3-credit COMM, SPCH, and WRTG courses (except those numbered 486A and 486B) apply.
  • An upper-level advanced writing course (3 credits)
    WRTG 391, WRTG 393, and WRTG 394 apply.

Note: No more than 3 credits of writing credit may be earned through credit by examination.

B. Mathematics (3 credits)

  • MATH 103, MATH 105, MATH 107, MATH 115, MATH 140, STAT 200, or a mathematics course approved by the department.

    Must be completed within first 24 credits. Prerequisites must be fully fulfilled before taking MATH 108, MATH 140, or any higher-numbered MATH or STAT courses.

Note: Check individual majors for recommended math courses and related requirements.

C. Arts and Humanities (6 credits)

  • Two 3-credit courses chosen from the following disciplines: ARTH, ARTT, ASTD (depending on course content), ENGL (except ENGL 281 and ENGL 384), GRCO, HIST, HUMN, MUSC, PHIL, THET, dance, literature, or foreign language.

D. Behavioral and Social Sciences (6 credits)

  • Two 3-credit courses chosen from the following disciplines: AASP (AASP 201 only), ANTH, ASTD (depending on course content), BEHS, CCJS (CCJS 100, CCJS 105, CCJS 350, CCJS 360, and CCJS 461 only), ECON, GEOG, GERO (except GERO 342 and GERO 351), GVPT, PSYC, SOCY, or WMST (WMST 200 only).

E. Biological and Physical Sciences (7 credits)

  • A science lecture course (3 credits) with related laboratory course (1 credit) or a science course combining lecture and laboratory (4 credits).
  • Any other science course (3 credits).

Note: Courses from the following disciplines apply: ASTR, BIOL, CHEM, GEOL, NSCI, NUTR, or PHYS. Science courses in other disciplines may also apply.

F. Research and Computing Literacy (7 credits)

  • Professional exploration course (3 credits)
    Should preferably be taken within the first 6 credits. PACE 111B, PACE 111C, PACE 111M, PACE 111P, PACE 111S, and PACE 111T apply.
  • Introduction to Research (1 Credits, LIBS 150), CAPL 398A, or general education elective (1 credit)
  • One course in computing or information technology (3 credits)
    Unless otherwise specified, upper- or lower-level courses in CMIS, CMIT, CMSC, CMST, CSIA, IFSM, SDEV, and ACCT 326 apply. Refer to your specific major for requirements of recommendations.

Major, Minor, and Elective Requirements

A. Academic Major (30–36 credits)

The number of credits required to complete an academic major varies according to academic program. At least half the credits earned within the major must be upper level (i.e., earned in courses numbered 300 and higher) and must be earned through UMGC. No grade may be lower than C. Specific coursework is prescribed for each major and is described in the following section.

B. Academic Minor (15–18 credits)

Choosing a minor is strongly encouraged even though it is optional. You may not take a major and minor in the same area and may not receive a double minor. The number of credits required to complete an academic minor varies according to academic program. At least half the credits earned within the minor must be upper level (unless otherwise specified) and must be earned through UMGC.

No grade may be lower than C. Specific coursework is prescribed for each minor and is described in a following section.

C. Electives (25–34 credits)

Electives may be taken in any academic discipline. Pass/fail credit, up to a maximum of 18 credits, may be applied toward electives only.

Overall Bachelor's Degree Requirements

In addition to the general education requirements and the major, minor, and elective requirements, the overall requirements listed here pertain to all bachelor’s degrees:

  1. You must be admitted as an undergraduate UMGC student.
  2. You must complete a minimum of 120 credits.
  3. You must maintain a minimum grade point average of 2.0 (C) overall, and a minimum grade of C (2.0) for any course applied to the academic major or minor.
  4. You must complete all general education requirements listed here.
  5. You must complete all coursework required for an academic major, which typically requires from 30 to 36 credits.
  6. At least 36 credits must be upper level (i.e., earned in courses numbered 300 to 499) and include at least one-half of the credits required for the major. The remaining upper-level credits may be earned in any part of the curriculum.
  7. At least half the required number of credits for any academic major or minor must be earned through graded coursework. Credits earned by examination, portfolio assessment, and noncollegiate training do not count as graded coursework.
  8. Within the 120 credits required, the following coursework must be taken through UMGC:
    • 30 credits (normally the final 30)
    • Half of the required number of credits within both the major and the minor (if you are not majoring in general studies) and the minor (if you choose a minor)
    • 15 credits at the upper level (i.e., earned in courses numbered 300 to 499), preferably within the major or minor (if you choose a minor)

Summary of Bachelor's Degree Requirements (Total 120)

  • General Education Requirements (41 credits)
  • Academic Major (30-36 credits)
  • Academic Minor (optional) (15-18 credits)
  • Electives (25-34 credits)

A cumulative grade point average of at least 2.0 (C)

Minimum 36 credits of upper-level credit.

A minimum of 30 credits at UMGC, including at least half the credits earned for the major and at least half for the minor, and including at least 15 credits of upper-level credit.