We aim to graduate students who are “ready on day one” to contribute to their communities and to succeed at work, graduate or professional school, community service, and life in general. Strategic outcomes for students fall into four broad areas:
- cognitive (think critically, know globally)
- skills (communicate effectively, create insightfully)
- values (engage responsibly, choose diversity)
- applications (ability to learn experientially, achieve personal and career goals)
These areas help students to master the general education and disciplinary components of the curriculum. Whether an aspiring artist or chemist, students need to think critically, communicate effectively, engage responsibly, and learn experientially, among other things. All these attributes define the liberal education of a Guilford College graduate.
The curriculum consists of five tiers:
Throughout their time at Guilford, students develop skill competencies in the following specific areas: writing, oral communication, research, information technology and quantitative reasoning. The platform for these competencies occurs generally in the Foundations courses; students then continue to develop these competencies during their course of studies.
The five Foundations requirements are: The First Year Experience or Adult Transitions, College Reading and Writing: Many Voices, Historical Perspectives, Foreign Language, and Quantitative Literacy. These requirements provide solid grounding in Guilford’s five academic principles.
Breadth: To gain educational experiences in each of the five disciplinary divisions (arts, business and policy studies, humanities, natural sciences, and mathematics and social science), students are required to take one “Breadth” course in each of these divisions.
Critical Perspectives: The Critical Perspectives courses speak directly to Guilford’s core values. Each student must complete three specially designated “Critical Perspectives” courses: Intercultural, Social Justice/Environmental Responsibility, and Diversity in the U.S.
Each student must choose a major field of specialization. It is expected that students should declare a major online in the college’s BannerWeb system by the time they have earned 32 credit hours. Students may pursue disciplinary majors, double majors or interdisciplinary majors.
All majors require a minimum of 32 credit hours. Certain majors require a larger number of credit hours. For a student to earn a major at Guilford, the student must complete at least half of the major credit requirements at Guilford. This requirement applies to each major a student earns. The minimum grade to satisfy a major is a C- in each of the courses required for a major, unless otherwise specified for professional licensure. In order for Credit/No Credit courses to count toward a major, they must be explicitly designated as such in the college catalog, and must represent credits above and beyond the minimum 32 semester credits required for a major.
In addition to the major course work, each student who is not pursuing a double major, triple major, B.F.A. degree, or an integrative studies major must choose a minor. A minor is a focused collection of a minimum of 16 credit hours that either provide a second, mini-depth area or involve study related to the major. The student must complete at least half of the minor credit requirements at Guilford. Students are free to take any minor so long as it does not have the same name as the major: thus an English major would not be able to use an English minor to satisfy the minor requirement. Minors may be either disciplinary or interdisciplinary.
Minimum grade to satisfy the minor: D- in each of the courses required for the minor.
Students should declare a minor online in the BannerWeb system by the time they have earned 32 credit hours.
Interdisciplinary Studies (IDS) Capstone
After students reach senior standing they must take an (IDS) capstone course. The IDS course allows students to draw upon knowledge and skills gained from previous College work and explore issues that cross traditional disciplinary lines.