General Education Core
Associate of Applies Science (A.A.S.) degree programs must contain a basic core of 15 semester credit hours of general education courses. They must include at least one course from each of the following areas: humanities/fine arts, social/behavioral sciences, and natural sciences/mathematics. Composition and speech also are expected. Specific core course requirements are included within each A.A.S. degree plan. General education courses are an integral part of a student’s preparation for work, and along with the technical course requirements, form the basis of a student’s program of study at TSTC.
The general education courses are basic to the purpose of TSTC and represent a commitment to offer breadth as well as depth to a student’s technical education program of study. The college offers a comprehensive general education program because:
(1) Employers are interested in hiring technically trained graduates, who with an appropriate grounding in science (natural, behavioral, and social), mathematics, and technology, can communicate effectively, work well with others, make appropriate decisions, adapt to change, and in many cases, continue their education.
(2) The general education courses provide the necessary mathematical, scientific, and communication skills required to succeed in major programs of study, in the workplace, and in life.
(3) General education courses assist in developing the ability to think critically, use logical reasoning in analyzing and solving problems, and appreciate cultural diversity.
(4) Many of our students need assistance in becoming prepared for college studies in the technical and the general education components of their studies.
(5) The general education courses are required to meet accrediting standards of regional, state, and occupational groups requiring a broad range of knowledge when obtaining a degree or certification, and they fulfill the requirements agreed upon in articulation agreements with other colleges and universities.
When considering which TSTC courses to offer or to accept on transfer from other colleges and universities, TSTC considers credits for Humanities and Fine Arts Electives that are based upon the definition of the Shared Vision Task Force of the National Council for Occupational Education and the Community College Humanities Association:
“Humanities in Associate Degree occupational programs are studies which expand the student’s awareness of the human condition and appreciation of human needs, values, and achievements. The Humanities assist in developing insights, capacities, and well reasoned convictions essential for a fulfilled public and private life, as well as a success in a career. They include studies of literature and all languages, history, philosophy and religion, and the history and appreciation of the fine arts. They do not include the development of basic communication skills in any human language.”