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The Purpose of General Education

General Education 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 students 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 pathway.    


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.  

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

For Continuing Students: Navigating General Education During Semester Conversion

As CSUEB converts from quarters to semesters in Fall 2018, navigating the terminology we use and the changes in the GE and graduation requirements may seem daunting.  If you are a continuing student (enrolled prior to Fall 2018), you may be faced with the decision of completing your GE and graduation requirements under the Semester Conversion (2018-2019) Catalog Year or finishing your GE and graduation requirements under an earlier catalog year.  You may hear advisors refer to these GE requirements as the "semester pattern" or "quarter pattern."  While all courses at CSUEB will be semester courses from Fall 2018, the "quarter pattern" refers to the GE and graduation requirements that were in place under quarters. 

But, what does this all mean?  Click on the buttons below to help you understand and make informed decisions about your catalog rights, particularly for GE.    

The First-Year Experience

Welcome to Cal State East Bay!

Whether you are a freshman or new transfer student, your first year at Cal State East Bay will be a time of transition and transformation, challenges and connections, uncertainty and great successes.  CSUEB's First-Year Experience (FYE) programs provide freshmen and transfer students with a variety of supports, resources, and experiences designed to build a strong sense of self and community.  The FYE programs have the overarching goal of academic success and share three features:

  1. Coordinated Advising: Every freshman will be assigned an academic advisor who will enroll each student in all their classes, provide academic advising, and help students navigate resources on campus.  
  2. General Studies: the General Studies (GS) Department offers courses for freshmen and new transfer students that bolster academic success through helping students develop strategies for lifelong learning, build a supportive community, and navigate the campus environment;
  3. Campus and Community Engagement: opportunities to engage in events, activities, and days of service within the campus community and beyond.

Click on the links below for more information on each of these FYE features.  

Contact Us

Office of General Education
  • SA 1500
  • 25800 Carlos Bee Blvd
  • Hayward, CA 94542
  • The GE Office is temporarily closed due to the mandatory shelter-in-place order issued by Governor Newsom in response to COVID-19. During this time, office staff are best reached through email.
  • For general questions about General Education, General Studies, or the First-Year Experience, email the address below, or contact the appropriate staff member listed.