Course enrollment system and course content
National Tsing Hua University’s six-dimension core curriculum of general education was formally instituted in 105 academic year, and the new course enrollment system was put into use in the 105 academic year. Its main accomplishment was to divide the 20 common curriculum course credits into (1) 8 to 12 credits in the core curriculum of general education (four of which are freely chosen, with the student taking at least one course for each dimension selected), and (2) 8 to 12 credits in electives of advanced/multi-area general education. This core curriculum program of general education, illustrated in the diagram below, has become a model for universities in Taiwan:
Currently, the Center offers at least 170+ to 200+ general education courses. As a proportion of student coursework, the program can be rated as the broadest and most faithful to the principles of general education in Taiwan’s higher education.
The six-dimension core curriculum program
There are three principles underlying the planning of NTHU’s general education core curriculum program: (1) basic knowledge of each domain and modes of thought; (2) integration of cross-disciplinary knowledge; (3) issue-base or theme-driven orientation. The far-reaching significance of the core curriculum of general education depends on its concentration on the most important concepts, providing further guidance in adapting to and systematizing the elective portion of the general education program. The core curriculum of general education encompasses six dimensions: (1) ways of thinking, (2) exploration of life, (3) art appreciation, (4) social and cultural dynamics, (5) science, technology and society (STS), (6) historical analysis. four of these can be freely chosen, and for each such chosen dimension, a student must take at least one course. The courses currently offered in the six dimensions are as shown below:
Guidelines for electives in advanced/multi-area coursework in the general education program
The advanced / multi-area courses are divided into three major areas—humanities (arts; philosophy and religious studies; cultural and historical studies); social sciences (law and politics; sociology, psychology, anthropology, education, and gender studies; management, informatics, and economics); and natural sciences (basic science; applied science; science, technology, and society). Collectively, these courses make professional knowledge accessible, and are designed to incorporate basic skills for modern life. In order to broaden the scope of students’ areas of knowledge, as well as to achieve a balance between the humanities and science and engineering, the general education program suggests that students in science and engineering take at least two credits in social sciences and humanities in general education coursework, while students in humanities and social sciences, and in business administration, should take at least two credits, respectively, in general education natural science courses.
Table Required general education coursework for students in various Colleges and Departments:
The Center hopes to build on its current foundations, nurturing a distinctive culture that harmonizes humanities and science and engineering in teaching and research, upholding the NTHU’s innovative academic spirit, while moving to develop unique strengths and competitiveness to meet the challenges of globalization.
Special regulations for course enrollment
1. Each student can take no more than three general education courses in any given semester (including required core general education program courses).
2.Under extenuating circumstances, a student wishing to exceed this three-course limit must provide a written statement of the reasons. If approval is granted by the student’s department chairman and director of the Center for General Education, the student can enroll in the desired courses.