UCA Core

Director: Dr. Jacob Held / 450-3634

The UCA Core, described here, becomes effective for incoming undergraduate students in Fall 2013. For the UCA General Education Program, in effect through the 2012-2013 academic year, see the relevant page in UBulletin 2012. Students who entered under the requirements of the General Education Program may opt for the UCA Core and should speak about this option with their academic advisor.

[1] Mission, Values, Goals, and Outcomes

[1.1] Structure, Mission, and Values

UCA Core

UCA Core

University Mission: The University of Central Arkansas dedicates itself to academic vitality, integrity, and diversity. Read more...

Mission of the UCA Core: The UCA Core is designed to help students develop the knowledge and skills necessary for critical inquiry, effective communication, and responsible living in a diverse and changing world.

Values of the UCA Core: The overarching goal of the program is to develop curious, knowledgeable, articulate, and ethical people who are prepared for greater success in future learning and who are willing and able to make effective contributions to their communities.

[1.2] Goals and Outcomes

Students completing the UCA Core program will demonstrate these goals and outcomes.

[1.2.1] Diversity (D)

Goal 1: Analyze their own cultural assumptions in the context of the world's diverse values, traditions, and belief systems.

  1. Outcome a: Articulate one's own cultural values and assumptions.
  2. Outcome b: Compare cultural values across a range of cultures.
  3. Outcome c: Respond to complex questions with answers that reflect multiple cultural perspectives.

Goal 2: Analyze the major ideas, techniques, and processes that inform creative works within different cultural and historical contexts.

  1. Outcome a: Identify creative techniques and processes and their relationship to ideas and themes in creative works.
  2. Outcome b: Evaluate the relationship between creative works and the cultural and historical context in which they are created.

[1.2.2] Critical Inquiry (I)

Goal 1: Demonstrate a knowledge base that helps them ask more informed questions and learn more complex concepts.

  1. Outcome a: Demonstrate an understanding of the basic concepts and principles in the discipline.
  2. Outcome b: Find and evaluate appropriate information based on knowledge of subject and technology.
  3. Outcome c: Apply appropriate modes of academic inquiry and analysis to develop and evaluate a position on significant questions in the discipline.

Goal 2: Use scientific, quantitative, and computational processes in order to solve real-world problems.

  1. Outcome a: Apply scientific processes to solve problems.
  2. Outcome b: Apply quantitative and computational processes to solve problems.

[1.2.3] Effective Communication (C)

Goal 1: Develop and present ideas logically and effectively in order to enhance communication and collaboration with diverse individuals and groups.

  1. Outcome a: Use appropriate conventions and strategies in oral communication for various audiences and purposes.
  2. Outcome b: Use appropriate conventions and strategies in written communication for various audiences and purposes.
  3. Outcome c: Individually apply appropriate verbal and nonverbal strategies to promote collaboration.

[1.2.4] Responsible Living (R)

Goal 1: Describe ways in which ethical principles affect human choices.

  1. Outcome a: Explain ethical dimensions of human choices.

Goal 2: Analyze the effect that decisions have on self, others, and the environment.

  1. Outcome a: Recognize the consequences of decision making.

Goal 3: Evaluate and practice strategies leading to individual and social well-being.

  1. Outcome a: Evaluate practices that lead to personal and social well-being.

[2] Lower-Division Core Requirements

UCA Core check sheet updated 2013-06-10

The lower-division core (“general education”) requires 38 semester credit hours, as outlined in the checksheet below. The following abbreviations indicate disciplinary categories for certain courses in this list:

FA = Fine Arts
HUM = Humanities
SS = Social Sciences

Transfer students, the State Minimum Core, and the Lower-Division UCA Core: A transfer student who has completed the 35-hour State Minimum Core curriculum before entering UCA will be deemed to have completed the lower-division UCA Core. No additional lower-division UCA Core courses will be required. A transfer student who has not completed the 35-hour State Minimum Core curriculum before entering UCA must work with an academic advisor to ensure timely completion of lower-division UCA Core requirements.

Arkansas Course Transfer System: A notation in [square brackets] following selected courses indicates the corresponding Arkansas Course Transfer System (ACTS) index number. For more information, see this UBulletin's ACTS page.

First-Year Seminar: During the first year, one course – from the Critical Inquiry, Diversity, or Responsible Living category – must be a First-Year Seminar (FYS). A student who is required to enroll in remedial course work in writing and/or reading must complete the remedial requirement before enrolling in a First-Year Seminar. See the online class schedule to find FYS sections.

Other First-Year Requirements: Student must take a Quantitative course, a Natural Science course, and the Written Communication course sequence (Writing Foundation + Research and Writing) in their first year unless the requirements was already met or remediation is required.

Fine Arts and Humanities:Students must take at least one course in the Fine Arts and one course in the Humanities in fulfillment of lower-division UCA Core requirements.

Social Science: In addition to the Social Science course taken in the Critical Inquiry category, students must take an additional Social Science course in either the Diversity in World Cultures or the Responsible Living category.

Additional information:

  • If an ACT subject score is below 19 in reading, writing, or mathematics, remediation is required.
  • Some majors require specific UCA Core courses.
  • Courses may be used only once to satisfy the UCA Core requirements.
  • A minimum grade of C is required in some UCA Core courses.
  • For additional information, consult your academic advisor or the relevant sections of this Undergraduate Bulletin.

[2.1] Diversity (6 hours)

Diversity in Creative Works (3 hours)

__ ENGL 2370 Introduction to Fiction (HUM)
__ ENGL 2380 Introduction to Poetry (HUM)
__ ENGL 2390 Introduction to Drama (HUM)
__ MUS 2300 Music Appreciation (FA) [MUSC1003]
__ SPCH 1305 Communication, Culture, and the Arts (FA)
__ WLAN 2315 Cultural Studies (HUM)
__ WRTG 2310 Introduction to Creative Writing (FA) [ENGL2013]
__ HONC 2320 Honors Core IV** (FA)

** HONC courses may be taken only with consent of the Honors College.

Diversity in World Cultures (3 hours)

__ ANTH 1302 Introduction to Anthropology (SS) [ANTH1013]
__ ECON 2310 Global Environment of Business (SS)
__ ENGL 2305 World Literature I (HUM) [ENGL2113]
__ ENGL 2306 World Literature II (HUM) [ENGL2123]
__ ENGL 2320 Asian Literature (HUM)
__ GEOG 1300 Geography of World Regions (SS) [GEOG2103]
__ HIST 1310 World History I (SS) [HIST1113]
__ HIST 1320 World History II (SS) [HIST1123]
__ LALS 2300 Latin American Cultures (HUM)
__ LING 1310 Language, Culture, & Society (SS)
__ PHIL 1330 World Philosophies (HUM)
__ RELG 1320 World Religions (HUM)
__ WLAN 2325 Issues of Cultural Identity in the African Diaspora (HUM)
__ BUAD 2303 College of Business Travel Class for Diversity in World Cultures (SS)
__ HONC 2310 Honors Core III** (HUM)

** HONC courses may be taken only with consent of the Honors College.

[2.2] Critical Inquiry (20 hours)

Quantitative (3 hours)

__ MATH 1360 Quantitative Literacy [MATH1003]
__ MATH 1390 College Algebra [MATH1103]

OR, if required by the student’s program of study or with the consent of the advisor and the course instructor

__ MATH 1392 Plane Trigonometry* [MATH1203]
__ MATH 1395 Business Calculus*
__ MATH 1491 Calculus for the Life Sciences*
__ MATH 1580 Algebra & Trigonometry* [MATH1305]
__ MATH 1496 Calculus I* [MATH2405]

* These courses have prerequisites. Consult the Mathematics Courses page for details.

Natural Sciences (8 hours)

Physical Science – Choose 1

__ CHEM 1400 Chemistry in Society [CHEM1004]
__ PHYS 1400 Physical Science for General Education [PHSC1004]
__ PHYS 1401 Descriptive Astronomy [PHSC1204]

OR, if required by the student's program of study or with the consent of the advisor and the course instructor

__ CHEM 1450 College Chemistry I* [CHEM1414]
__ CHEM 1402 General Chemistry for Health Sciences* [CHEM1214]
__ PHYS 1405 Applied Physics*
__ PHYS 1410 College Physics 1* [PHYS2014]
__ PHYS 1441 University Physics 1* [PHYS2034]

Life Science – Choose 1

__ BIOL 1400 Biology for General Education [BIOL1004]

OR, if required by the student’s program of study or with the consent of the advisor and the course instructor

__ BIOL 1440 Principles of Biology I* [BIOL1014]

* These courses have prerequisites. Consult the Biology Courses page, Chemistry Courses page, or Physics Courses page for details.

Inquiry and Analysis (9 hours)

American History and Government – Choose 1

__ HIST 2301 American Nation I [HIST2113]
__ HIST 2302 American Nation II [HIST2123]
__ PSCI 1330 US Government & Politics [PLSC2003]

Social Science – Choose 1

__ ECON 2320 Principles of Macroeconomics (SS) [ECON2103]
__ ECON 2321 Principles of Microeconomics (SS) [ECON2203]
__ GEOG 1305 Principles of Geography (SS) [GEOG1103]
__ MGMT 2341 Principles of Management (SS)
__ BUAD 2301 College of Business Travel Class for Critical Inquiry (SS)
__ PSCI 1300 Introduction to Political Science (SS)
__ PSCI 1330 US Government & Politics (SS) [PLSC2003]
__ PSCI 2300 International Relations (SS)
__ PSYC 1300 General Psychology (SS) [PSYC1103]
__ SOC 1300 Principles of Sociology (SS) [SOCI1013]

Fine Arts/Humanities – Choose 1

__ ART 2300 Art Appreciation (FA) [ARTA1003]
__ AFAM 1330 African & African-American Studies (HUM)
__ ENGL 1350 Introduction to Literature (HUM)
__ ENGL 1355 Film & Literature (HUM)
__ FILM 2300 Film Appreciation (FA)
__ FREN 2320 Intermediate II [FREN2023] or GERM 2320 Intermediate II [GERM2023] or SPAN 2320 Intermediate III or CHIN 2320 Intermediate Chinese II* (HUM)
__ LALS 2310 Latinos in the United States (HUM)
__ PHIL 1301 Philosophy for Living (HUM) [PHIL1103]
__ PHIL 2305 Critical Thinking (HUM) [PHIL1003]
__ RELG 1330 Exploring Religion (HUM)
__ THEA 2300 Theatre Appreciation (FA) [DRAM1003]
__ WLAN/LING 2350 World Languages (HUM)
__ HONC 1310 Honors Core I** (HUM)

* These courses have prerequisites. Consult the appropriate course page for details: Chinese, French, German, Spanish.

** HONC courses may be taken only with consent of the Honors College.

[2.3] Communication (9 hours)

Writing Foundation (3 hours)

Writing Foundation must be taken upon initial enrollment unless the student has already met the requirement or remediation is required.

__ WRTG 1310 Introduction to College Writing [ENGL1013] or
__ HONC 1310 Honors Core I**

** HONC courses may be taken only with consent of the Honors College.

Research and Writing (3 hours)

__ WRTG 1320 Academic Writing and Research [ENGL1023] or
__ ENGL 1320 Interdisciplinary Writing and Research [ENGL1023] or
__ HONC 1320 Honors Core II**

** HONC courses may be taken only with consent of the Honors College.

Oral Communication (3 hours)

__ SPCH 1300 Basic Oral Communication [SPCH1003]
__ MGMT 2301 Business Communication [BUSI2013]

OR, if required by the student’s program of study or with the consent of the advisor and the course instructor

__ MKTG 2376 Business Innovation & Creativity

[2.4] Responsible Living (3 hours) [R, 1-3]

__ ECON 1310 Modern Political Economy (SS)
__ FACS 2341 Lifespan Development
__ FACS 2351 Family Relations
__ FINA 2330 Personal Finance (SS)
__ H ED 1320 Concepts of Lifetime Health & Fitness
__ H ED 2320 Mental Health (SS)
__ KPED 1320 Concepts of Lifetime Health and Fitness
__ MCOM 1300 Media & Society
__ NUTR 1300 Nutrition in the Lifecycle
__ PHIL 2325 Contemporary Moral Problems (HUM)
__ PHIL 2360 Gender, Race, & Class (HUM)
__ PSCI 2315 Introduction to Political Theory (SS)
__ SOC 2325 Social Problems (SS) [SOCI2013]
__ SPCH 1306 Communication and Civic Engagement
__ WRTG 2325 Introduction to Rhetoric
__ BUAD 2303 College of Business Travel Class for Responsible Living (SS)
__ HONC 1320 Honors Core II (SS)**
__ HONC 2310 Honors Core III (HUM)**

** HONC courses may be taken only with consent of the Honors College.

[3] Upper-Division Core Requirements

The UCA Core's upper-division requirements will be phased in by Fall 2015. Students should consult their academic advisors for clarification about upper-division requirements that apply to them.

Once the upper-division core is implemented, students will be required to take upper-division courses that address outcomes in each of the four areas of the UCA Core: Diversity (D), Critical Inquiry (I), Communication (C), and Responsible Living (R). These courses may also count as major, minor, or elective requirements, and one course may satisfy up to two Core requirements, as long as the outcomes for both areas are assessed.

The UCA Core capstone requirement will be implemented on the same timeline as the rest of the upper-division Core requirements. The required capstone will, in addition to any disciplinary goals and outcomes, address certain UCA Core goals and outcomes in Critical Inquiry, Communication and Collaboration.

Page updated: January 28, 2014