Statement and Objectives of General Education
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Statement and Objectives of General Education

What is General Education?

General Education is a set of courses through which you will become broadly educated.  These courses are opportunities for you to gain skills and insights that will be useful in your entire life, no matter what you choose as a major or career objective. Jefferson Community College considers General Education courses to be an integral part of the total degree program.

Made up of a local set of Objectives and SUNY-wide categories, the general education program contains courses that will enable you to acquire and use the knowledge, skills, and abilities necessary to do well both while at Jefferson and after being graduated.  You should work closely with your advisor to choose a general education program that complements your degree and interests.

Approved General Education Courses

Specific Jefferson Community College courses approved as meeting the knowledge and skills learning outcomes defined by SUNY are also listed on SOAR (Student Online Access to Records).

Jefferson Community College Statement of General Education

Jefferson Community College affirms its view of education as an ongoing continuum of personal, intellectual, emotional and social growth. This view recognizes the student’s need to acquire substantive knowledge, the need to develop personal and intellectual resources fundamental to evaluation and assessment, and the need to develop the ability to communicate to others the processes of this effort.

JCC recognizes the merit of recognizing General Educational Objectives for students pursuing studies in its Associate Degree programs.

Jefferson Community College Objectives of General Education

In the establishment of specific and measurable General Education Objectives, JCC is making a statement of intent to provide its students with the capacity and the skills to continue their educations as a lifelong pursuit, should they so choose.

Therefore, under the auspices of its various Associate Degree programs, JCC is committed to enabling its students to meet the following General Education Objectives:

  • Graduates shall be able to utilize effective communication skills in reading, writing, speaking and listening.
  • Graduates shall be able to solve problems through logical reasoning and the scientific method and they shall be able to discern thought patterns and beliefs in their own decisions and in the works of others.
  • Graduates shall be mathematically competent to interpret, compute and apply quantitative data.
  • Graduates shall demonstrate the ability to select and use the most appropriate technological tool(s) and understand technology’s impact on self and society.
  • Graduates shall have the ability to access, evaluate, synthesize and communicate information effectively using a variety of sources, including print and electronic.
  • Graduates shall demonstrate knowledge of diverse peoples and their cultures.

SUNY-Based General Education Objectives

In December 1998, and modified in 2010, the SUNY Board of Trustees adopted a resolution establishing a 30 credit hour General Education requirement for all baccalaureate degree candidates to begin with the freshman class entering in the fall of 2000. The resolution requires all students earning SUNY baccalaureate degrees to complete general education course work in

  • Mathematics
  • Basic Communication

and at least 5 of the following 8 categories of knowledge and skill areas

  • American History
  • Arts
  • Foreign Language
  • Humanities
  • Natural Sciences
  • Other World Civilizations
  • Social Sciences
  • Western Civilization

The following competencies are expected to be infused throughout the General Education program:

  • Critical Thinking
  • Information Management.

Effective fall 2015,  Jefferson's AA and AS degree programs (with the exception of Individual Studies) have been designed to meet the SUNY requirements.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

I am not planning to transfer to a SUNY college.  Do I need to worry about general education?

All colleges have some form of a general education requirement. You should review the requirements at all potential transfer institutions early in order to best prepare yourself for transfer. 

Do I need to complete the entire 30 credit SUNY General Education requirement in order to graduate from Jefferson?

Depending upon your degree and the date you graduate you may not need to complete the entire SUNY General Education Requirement in order to graduate from Jefferson.   Effective fall 2015 students enrolling in most AA and AS degree programs will meet the entire requirement as these degrees have been constructed to do so.  Regardless of your degree, if you plan to transfer to a SUNY institution, It is strongly suggested you complete courses from the mathematics, basic communication, and 5 of the eight remaining categories.

I plan to transfer to a SUNY school.  What advice can you give me?

SUNY four-year institutions expect students to complete the entire SUNY General Education Requirement (30 credits) as part of their AA or AS degree program prior to transfer.  If you know where you plan to transfer within SUNY, you should seek advisement on the best set of courses to take as many individual SUNY campuses also have local general education requirements which could significantly impact optimal course selection.  One helpful resource is the SUNY Transfer Website for General Education.

Will the General Education courses I take at Jefferson count as General Education at another SUNY College?

If you earn a grade of C or higher in a SUNY General Education course, you will have satisfied the general education component for that course at every SUNY campus.  

Can I take more than one course from a knowledge and skill area?

Yes, you may.  If you plan to transfer to another SUNY Institution you should refer to that institution’s website to make sure you select the best set of courses to complete.  The SUNY Transfer Website for General Education contains links to General Education information for each SUNY University Center, University College, and Technology College.