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The Purpose of General Education

person climbing hill

General  Education/Breadth  empowers students  to become independent thinkers, able to transform their learning into meaningful action.  Cal State East Bay's General Education (GE) Program is designed to educate its students holistically  and is central to the university experience .  The GE Program provides students with opportunities to explore disciplines and ideas that are new and may change their world perspectives that help define them as educated citizens of the global community.  

While a college diploma opens doors to career and employment opportunities, the true value of the degree is not the degree itself but the experiences and relationships developed while in college--the value is in the journey not the destination.  Cal State East Bay's campus community is dedicated to supporting students through their journey.  Although student s may struggle to make meaning and see the immediate benefits of their college curriculum as they look to the end goal of graduation, Cal State East Bay is focused on its graduates being educated people whose quality of life will be vastly improved by the college experience.  Students should make the best use of all opportunities and resources open to them, including the selection of courses that make up their GE/Breadth pathway.    

(Art by Dayton Garrett)



icon-CompassRoseWe refer to all the requirements outside of your major as GE/Breadth. Finding your way through your GE and Breadth requirements may be confusing and overwhelming.  We want to help you navigate these requirements, policies, and class options to keep you on the path to graduation.  

IMPORTANT NOTE: There are changes to some GE requirements that go into effect for first-time CSU freshmen who in Fall semester 2021 and later.  Continuing students and transfer students will be held to earlier GE requirements, depending on their year of matriculation or GE/Graduation Requirement catalog rights.

Click on the links in the "At-a-Glance" area below to access the Catalog listings of courses in each GE/Breadth area.


GE AREAS Fall 2018-Summer 2021

Click to access the Catalog list of courses in each area.

GE AREAS Fall 2021 and Later

Click to access the Catalog list of courses in each area.


Click to access the Catalog list of courses in each area.


⇓  Click on the tiles in the section below to access GE/breadth information, resources, and advising.

The Goals of General Education

Every undergraduate student at Cal State East Bay follows a degree program composed primarily of major courses and GE courses.  Successful completion of these courses assures that graduates make measurable progress toward becoming truly educated persons who can contribute to a diverse society.  The GE Program and Breadth Requirements are designed and organized to help students attain the program's objectives, which are aligned to the campus' Institutional Learning Outcomes and to the Essential Learning Outcomes of the Liberal Education and America's Promise (LEAP) initiative, all of which express the knowledge, skills, and values Cal State East Bay graduates are expected to achieve.  The overarching goals of GE are to provide all students with:

  • knowledge of human cultures and the physical and natural world through study in the sciences and mathematics, social sciences, humanities, histories, languages, and arts;
  • intellectual and practical skills, including inquiry and analysis, critical and creative thinking, written and oral communication, quantitative literacy, information literacy, teamwork, and problem solving; 
  • personal and social responsibility, including civic knowledge and engagement at local and global levels, intercultural knowledge and competence, ethical reasoning and action, and foundations and skills for lifelong learning.  

There are 14 areas that make up the "breadth" of GE.  Each area has its own set student learning outcomes and characteristics. Students completing courses to fulfill each area of GE are expected to have met these learning outcomes.  At Cal State East Bay, programmatic assessment of GE learning outcomes is performed in ongoing cycles, and its primary purpose is to enhance student learning and improve the learning experiences in the GE program. 

For information on how GE is assessed at CSUEB, click here

Contact Us

Office of General Education
  • SA 1500
  • 25800 Carlos Bee Blvd
  • Hayward, CA 94542
  • For general questions about GE/breadth requirements, General Studies courses, or the First-Year Experience:
  • Phone: (510) 885-2941
  • Email: