As everyone knows, picking general education courses is somewhat akin to powering through a proverbial box of chocolates—you never really know what you’re going to get. What you expect to be the funnest class ever can sometimes turn out to be about as exciting as Math 1050, or vice versa. As a recent graduate, I feel it is my duty to impart to you some of my favorite* (valuable/interesting) general education classes, along with their credit type, pros/cons, and difficulty level.
Clint Eastwood, eat your heart out
Course: History 1700
Credit Type: History / American Institutions
I’ve always been somewhat interested in history in general, but American history always seemed to lack the excitement and energy that European history has. However, American Civilization turned out to be a great class. I credit a lot of my positive experience to my professor, Dr. Gene A. Sessions, who always managed to present the history and tell stories in an exciting and unique way. He’s also hilarious, and makes each class wildly exciting and informative. I walked away from the class with a wealth of knowledge and a healthy respect for the history of this country.
Pros: Interesting and relevant subject matter taught by an amazing professor.
Cons: One of the few Breadth requirements, this class is always large and always full (currently, Dr. Sessions’ two History 1700 classes have a capacity of 150 students each)
That totally looks like a Sagitarius…right?
Course: Physics 1040
Credit Type: Physical Science / Scientific Inquiry
Who doesn’t love staring up at the stars? Well, welcome to Elementary Astronomy! The classroom itself is a state–of–the–art planetarium and has the most comfortable chairs on campus. I really loved this class because it was different in every way from the average classroom setting. It was also a blast to have my mind blown every class learning about stars, galaxies, black holes, relativity, the laws of physics, and anything else to do with outer space. My professor, John Armstrong, was an amazing teacher and a hilarious person. His passion for physics really made the class fun and exciting. Don’t get me wrong though, it is a fairly difficult class. There aren’t any prerequisites listed, but you would definitely be ahead if you have a handle on math and physics.
Pros: High–tech planetarium star shows and very interesting lectures.
Cons: Not a very easy class, especially if you struggle with math.
For more information on the Physics department, read my other blog article.
Foundations in Nutrition
Course: Nutrition 1020
Credit Type: Life Science
Everyone knows that eating right is vital to maintaining a healthy lifestyle, but it’s not always easy to know exactly what to eat, or why. Foundations in Nutrition is a great way to get educated in the complex world of healthy eating. This is one of those classes that I really was not excited about taking, but over the course of the semester I learned to really like it and appreciate everything I was learning. Taking a class like this, you can’t help but apply what you learned to your own life, which is important if you aren’t totally satisfied with your own health. Be aware that the class does involve some minor mathematical calculations (regarding numbers and percentages on a nutrition label) and a good amount of traditional homework and studying.
Pros: Lots of valuable, life–changing information to be learned
Cons: Unless you’re a health nut, it probably won’t be the most exciting class you’ve ever taken.
*Remember that this is all my own opinion and comes directly from my own experiences. You may not feel the same way about these classes and if you’re hesitant, contact an adviser to help you out. Good luck!