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General Education Frequently Asked Questions

The new Liberal Arts and Sciences Program requirements are designed to prepare you for transfer to upper division programs at Farmingdale State University of New York, other SUNY units, or private and public institutions locally, within New York State, and throughout the nation.

There are ten categories called General Education Competency Areas and in order to get a four-year degree within the SUNY system, you must fulfill all of them. Some of the Competency Areas require one course while others require two. Together, the ten areas provide a broad-based educational experience that is necessary for successful study in any major. In most cases, there is a wide choice of courses that fulfills each Competency Areas. You should choose the course or courses in each area that are best for you. Liberal Arts and Sciences Students will be required to complete all ten Competency Areas.

Yes if you earn a grade of “C” or better. Even though each SUNY unit has a different list of courses that fulfill a Competency Area, once you have satisfied the requirements for the Competency at Farmingdale State University of New York, it is automatically fulfilled at any SUNY institution.

General Education Requirements?

Every private college has General Education Requirements and they are usually very similar to SUNY's. If you know were you want to go, you should familiarize yourself with that school's General Education Requirements. For example, Catholic Colleges usually require several courses in Philosophy and students who are planning to transfer to Catholic Colleges would be smart to take PHI205 - “Ethics” as their Humanities Competency course and perhaps one or two other PHI electives. You may be able to complete SUNY's General Education Requirements and those of other schools by choosing courses wisely.

General Education Requirements?

Electives. You will be required to take a sufficient number of courses so that your credits toward the degree total at least 62. In most cases there will be five elective courses needed to complete the degree. If you take several courses that carry more than three credits, you may need fewer than five electives.

You should use your elective choices wisely and not waste them.

  • They can be used to investigate possible career choices. If you think that you

might be interested in business, for example, you should take

 BUS 111 - “Intro to Business.”

  • Electives may also be used to strengthen a weak background in some area.

If you know little about using computers, you should take BCS191 - “Introduction

 to Computers” If you are not a very good writer, you may want to take

EGL226 - “Journalism” or EGL310 - “Technical Writing.” If you need to take

level 1 of a Modern Language, you can take it for elective credit.

  • Electives may be used to take a course that seems particularly interesting to you.

If you have made a career choice you may use your electives to prepare for

your intended career. Information about the recommended electives for various

careers is available from advisors.

  • Students who have decided to transfer to a specific program at a specific school

should bring a copy of the program or a list of prerequisite requirements to


  • If you have problems in making choices of electives, your advisor will be happy

to help you