St. Bonaventure University

General Education Curriculum


St. Bonaventure University is a Catholic university dedicated to educational excellence in the Franciscan tradition. We enhance the lives of our students and help them prepare for their futures by providing experiences that build knowledge, skills, and character. Our University has its roots in the traditional liberal arts and sciences, and the general education curriculum values that tradition within the context of the Catholic and Franciscan intellectual heritage.  Its aim is to provide students with foundational knowledge for all majors that aligns with the University’s six student learning goals:

  1. Basic knowledge of the liberal arts and sciences, specialized knowledge in a particular area of study, and the ability to integrate knowledge from different academic disciplines.
  2. The ability to think constructively, critically, and creatively, including competencies in analytic inquiry, quantitative literacy, information literacy, evidential reasoning, and problem solving.
  3. Competence in multimodal communication with special emphasis on oral, written, and digital communication, including an understanding of key issues relating to their use.
  4. A disposition to understand societal issues, seek solutions, and become responsible citizens.
  5. An ability to engage with ultimate questions of a metaphysical, theological, and philosophical nature.
  6. A basic understanding of the Catholic tradition and an appreciation of the intellectual and moral virtues expressed in the Franciscan movement (e.g., humility, compassion, justice with peace, love of wisdom, and the inherent goodness of all creation).

Within the framework of these goals and the University’s Mission, the general education curriculum offers students an educational experience that encourages them to examine critically their own cultural assumptions and to explore openly and fairly other perspectives and cultures.  This deepening appreciation of their own heritage and sensitive openness to alternative frameworks should prepare students to take their place as thinking, moral individuals in a global community.


Requirements for the General Education Curriculum


The General Education Curriculum is a 37-hour program to help students appreciate a liberal arts education. Each required specific course and each distribution list has been developed based on a list of learning objectives and assessment procedures. (Transfer students receive credit for some of these courses. Please consult Transferring Credits to SBU.)

To see the descriptions for any of the courses listed below, please refer to the Online Undergraduate Catalog.

I. Required specific courses — 15 credits

  • SBU 101. Community of Learners — 2 credits
  • SBU 102. An Introduction to Contemporary Diversity — 1 credit
  • THFS 101. The Way of Francis and Clare (Honors students may take THFS 104) — 3 credits
  • PHIL 104. Introduction to Ethics (Honors students may take PHIL 105) — 3 credits
  • ENG 101. Writing I and ENG 102. Writing II (Honors students may take ENG 104) — 3 credits each. Please see Placement in ENG 101 & ENG 102.

II. One course from each distribution — 22 credits

  • Franciscan Studies/Theology (Click to see courses)
    • THFS 235. Catholic Theology
    • THFS 245. Christian Ethics
    • THFS 261. Jesus Through the Centuries
    • THFS 266. Franciscan Theology for Today
    • THFS 270. Introduction to the Bible
    • THFS 271. Understanding the Old Testament
    • THFS 272. Understanding the New Testament
    • THFS 285. Global Catholicism
    • THFS 320. Franciscan Approach to Healthcare
    • THFS 333. Christian Marriage
    • THFS 340. Ethical Leadership: Franciscan Values in the Workplace
    • THFS 348. Health, Faith, and Ethics
    • THFS 359. Franciscan Spirituality
    • THFS 360. Early Christian History to the Reformation
  • Historical Studies (Click to see courses)
    • CULT 101. Greek Civilization
    • CULT 102. Roman Civilization
    • CULT 103. Greek and Roman Mythology
    • CULT 104. Archaeology of Ancient Greece and Italy
    • HIST 101. Europe to 1815
    • HIST 102. Europe since 1815
    • HIST 106. The Art of Historical Detection
    • HIST 201. United States History to 1865
    • HIST 202. United States History Since 1865
    • HIST 206. Introduction to Public History
    • HIST 250. World History to 1450
    • HIST 251. World History Since 1450
    • HIST 407. Twentieth Century United States
    • HIST 408. United States, 1945-2000
  • Literature and the Visual and Performing Arts (Click to see courses)
    • ARTH 101. Survey of Western Art I
    • ARTH 102. Survey of Western Art II
    • ENG 203. English Literature I
    • ENG 204. English Literature II
    • ENG 213. Popular Literature
    • ENG 220. American Literature I
    • ENG 221. American literature II
    • ENG 377. Women in Literature
    • ENG 379. African American Literature
    • ENG 423. Shakespeare I: Comedies and Histories
    • ENG 424. Shakespeare II: Tragedies
    • FREN 480. French Literature in Translation
    • MU 111. Understanding Music
    • MU 212. Music History II: From Classical to Contemporary
    • MU 312. American Music
    • MU 313. History of Jazz
    • MU 314. Musical Theater
    • SPAN 322. Spanish Literature in Translation
    • SPAN 324. Contemporary Latin American Literature in Translation
    • SPAN 325/WS 325. Hispanic Women Writers
    • THFS 325. Religion and Art
    • THTR 101. Introduction to the Theater
    • THTR 212. History of European Theater
    • THTR 412. Shakespeare in Performance
    • THTR 413. Honors: Shakespeare in Performance
  • Natural Science with a Lab (Click to see courses)
    • BIO/BIOL 101. Fundamentals of Biology and Laboratory
    • BIO 110. Plants and Human Culture
    • BIO 135. Introduction to Biotechnology and BIOL 135. Introduction to Biotechnology Lab
    • CHEM 101. General Chemistry I and CHML 101. General Chemistry I Laboratory
    • PHSC 101. Earth Science and PHSL 101. Earth Science Laboratory
    • PHSC 106. Stars and Stellar Systems and PHSC 113L. Astronomy Laboratory
    • PHSC 191. Introduction to Natural Science and PHSL 191. Introduction to Natural Science Lab
    • PHYS 103. General Physics I and PHYL 103. General Physics I Laboratory
  • Philosophy (Click to see courses)
    • PHIL 102. Introduction to Philosophy
    • PHIL 111. Introduction to Critical Thinking
    • PHIL 210. Metaphysics
    • PHIL 317. Philosophy of Religion
    • PHIL 320. Existentialism
    • PHIL 338. Health Care Ethics
    • PHIL 339. Philosophy of Love and Sex
    • PHIL 341 Environmental Ethics
    • PHIL 361. Evil and Modern Thought
  • Quantitative Literacy (Click to see courses)
    • MATH 107. Introduction to Statistics
    • MATH 108. Pre-Calculus Mathematics
    • MATH 111. Mathematics for Elementary Education I
    • MATH 112. Mathematics for Elementary Education II
    • MATH 117. Introduction to Statistics for Natural Science Majors
    • MATH 122. Calculus for Management and Social Sciences
    • MATH 135. Quantitative Reasoning
    • MATH 145. Introduction to Mathematical Concepts
    • MATH 151. Calculus I
    • QMX 210. Quantitative Application for Business Students
  • Social Sciences (Click to see courses)
    • ECO 101. Microeconomics Principles
    • ECO 102. Macroeconomics Principles
    • EDUC 210. Human Development and Learning
    • EDUC 214. Honors Human Development and Learning
    • EDUC 250. Adolescent Development and Learning
    • POLS 102. American Politics
    • POLS 103. International Relations
    • POLS 203. Comparative Political Systems
    • PSYC 101. An Introduction to Psychology
    • SOC 101. Introductory Sociology
    • SOC 111. Honors: Intro to Sociology

III. One course from each designation

In order to complete their General Education students must take a course designated as

  • Intensive Writing (W) (Click to see courses)
    • ENG 250. Advanced Oral and Written Communication
    • ENG 260. Professional Communication
    • ENG 325. Writing in Digital Environments
    • ENG 326. Digital Rhetoric
    • ENG 375. The American Novel to 1865
    • ENG 377. Women in Literature
    • ENG 498. Senior Writing Workshop
    • HIST 200. Historical Methods and Historiography
    • HIST 407. Twentieth Century United States: 1900-1945 
    • HIST 408. Twentieth Century United States: 1945-Present
    • JMC 202: Reporter’s Narrative: Craft
    • JMC 318. Creative Nonfiction
    • JMC 319. Writing Spaces and Places
    • JMC 482: Women, Minorities and the Media
    • JMC 483: Media and Democracy
    • NUR 401. Nursing Theory and Professionalism
    • POLS 498. Political Science Capstone
    • SC 301. Strategic Writing and Professional Communication
    • SPAN 303. Advanced Grammar and Composition
    • SPED 350. Instructional Design for All Learners
    • THFS 327. Religion and Terrorism
  • Diversity (D) (Click to see courses)
    • EDUC 270. English Language Learners in K-12 Classrooms
    • ENG 379. African American Literature
    • HIST 250. World History to 1450
    • HIST 251. World History Since 1450
    • IS 101. Introduction to International Studies
    • ML 300. Introduction to Intercultural Communication
    • MU 315. World Music
    • NUR 302. Community Health with Clinical
    • NV 358/PHIL 358. The Philosophy of Gandhi
    • NV 203. Martin Luther king Jr.
    • POLS 207. Politics and Religion
    • POLS 375/WS 375. Women and Politics
    • SPAN 325. Hispanic Women Writers
    • SPED 230. Introduction to Special Education
    • THFS 205. Myth and Culture
    • THFS 324. Religion and Race
    • THFS 327. Religion and Terrorism
    • THTR 101. Introduction to the Theater
    • THTR 211. History of American Theater
    • WS 101. Introduction to Women's Studies
    • WS 374/THFS 374. Women and the Bible

These types of courses can be found anywhere in the curriculum of the University among the distribution lists above, in a major or minor, or any elective courses. Please see the catalog to find a list of courses that apply.