The Goshen Core

What we call “the Goshen Core” (sometimes called “General Education” at other schools) is the set of courses and requirements that applies to all students no matter what major they choose (16 classes). The larger context of a Bachelor’s Degree at Goshen consists of 120 credit hours – about 40 classes as you can see in the pie chart below – click on any image to expand it.

Our unique Core Curriculum at Goshen includes three major components

We designed the Goshen Core with the college’s vision statement in mind. In that statement we express our aim to focus on “international, intercultural, interdisciplinary, and integrative teaching and learning that offers every student a life-orienting story embedded in Christ centered core values: global citizenship, compassionate peacemaking, servant leadership and passionate learning.” In order to express that through our curriculum, we developed a set of Student Learning Outcomes and then created a program with three main parts:

  1. Three “threads” of course work –

    • The First Year Experience Thread (yellow), which develops students’ fundamental academic skills
    • The Intercultural Thread (red), which prepares students for the increasingly global world of the 21st century
    • The Perspectives Courses Thread (blue), an interdisciplinary thread that helps students see how knowledge is created and revised in multiple areas of study
  2. The Electronic Portfolio – which allows students to collect their work and then produce a “showcase” at the end of their first year and at the culmination of the Intercultural Thread.
  3. Pre-requisites and other requirements – Students at GC are required to attend and participate in Monday convocations and Friday chapels — events that foster intellectual exploration and faith formation.  We also require that students demonstrate competency in Quantitative Literacy through a test, or by taking a course. In order to prepare for intercultural study, students must demonstrate proficiency in a foreign language equivalent to two semesters of college-level study.

The Goshen Core – the purple part of the pie chart below – includes the three threads shown here in primary colors as listed above (click on the image to expand it):

The most common sequence of a student’s time at GC is represented in this chart below. Notice that the Perspectives courses can start at any time, but the First Year Experience needs to be completed in the first year (or at least by the end of the third semester).  Click on the image to expand it:



The full set of courses is represented by the graphic below.  For a detailed explanation of the program, see the graphic at the bottom of this page.  Click on the image below to expand it:


A more detailed explanation is represented here in this graphic.  Click on it to expand it for easy reading: