The General Education Program of Illinois College is driven by the College’s mission. Along with foundational courses in oral communication, research, and writing, all Illinois College students must pass courses based in the fine arts and humanities, modern language, the natural sciences, quantitative reasoning, and the social sciences, as well as courses confronting them with critical issues that are both contemporary and timeless for responsible citizens and reflective human beings.
Because oral communication, research, and writing are basic elements in academic work, Illinois College students must pass IC 102 (a .5 hour research course which is co-taught with the writing class), one course from the first-year seminar program (included below), and at least one 3 or 4 hour course in each of the following areas, normally in their first year:
| Oral Communication
Because Illinois College graduates are to have gained knowledge spanning the liberal arts, every student must pass at least one 3, 4, or 5 hour course in each of the following areas:
| Natural Science with lab
||Physical Science with lab |
| Fine Arts
||Quantitative and Symbolic Reasoning |
and at least two 3 or 4 hour courses in each of the following areas:
||Social Science |
Because Illinois College cherishes Judeo-Christian values, civic engagement, and awareness of cultural diversity and global community, every student must pass at least one 3 or 4 hour course in each of the following areas:
| Religious and Philosophical Issues
||Civic Issues and Responsibility |
| Global Issues and Cultural Awareness
For educational variety and breadth, students must pass twenty-four hours of elective courses beyond general education requirements and outside the discipline of their academic majors.
General Education Mission StatementThe General Education Program furthers the mission of the college by developing in students “a reflective understanding of the most significant areas of human knowledge; the ability to make considered value judgments; a capacity for effective communication; and a commitment to lifelong learning.” In the General Education Program, Illinois College students study the spectrum of human knowledge. Students learn of human achievements in the arts, letters and sciences; of the formation and structure of social, political, and economic institutions; of the critical issues that are both contemporary and timeless for responsible citizens and reflective human beings; and of the value systems and questions essential to life in human society. Students learn to distinguish among multiple ways of knowing, and they learn, too, that human judgment emerges in the individual’s ability to distinguish among multiple claims for truth. Ultimately, students learn the value of free, unfettered inquiry; they learn to continue raising the questions that address the nature of human life.
Illinois College wants its graduates to be moral and responsible citizens prepared to engage in and enhance the rich diversity of civil society. The General Education Program intends to foster
- curiosity to reflect on human nature.
- ability to acknowledge the ambiguities present in most human endeavors.
- willingness to engage questions of ethical reasoning and religious understanding.
- understanding of the aesthetic dimension of human life.
- comprehension of the basis for human understanding of the natural world and the ability to make informed judgments about that world.
- awareness of achievements and limitations of major world cultures and an appreciation of contributions of western and non-western cultures
- to humanity.
- knowledge of major economic, political, scientific, and social movements and their contributions to human history.
- logical, critical, and creative thought.
- understanding of the aims, means, and values of academic research.
- an eagerness and ability to conduct inquiry into various appropriate sources and literature.
- ability to speak and write for various audiences in differing contexts.
- significant experience with at least one non-native language.
- understanding of the nature and value of empirical research and an ability to undertake such research.
- ability to solve problems involving both qualitative and quantitative data.
The individual sections of the General Education program are described below along with courses which currently meet each requirement. These lists of courses are dynamic and subject to additions and deletions as courses change.
Oral Communication (one 3 hour course)
All first-year students take a course in Oral Communication. In this course, students engage actively in the research, organization, writing, and delivery of oral presentations. These activities prepare students for the many forms of speaking they will do in their years at Illinois College and in their lives after college. This course is conventionally taken not later than one of the first two semesters in residence.
Intended Outcomes. Students who have completed the course in Oral Communication can
- structure and support a presentation.
- make extemporaneous, impromptu and manuscript presentations and adapt them to different audiences and contexts.
- listen effectively.
- engage the discourse of others critically.
Courses that fulfill the Requirement include:
Writing (one 3-4 hour course) and
Library Research Methods (one 0.5 hour course)
All first-year students take a course in Writing that encourages them to think of writing as a process and not only as a product. Focusing on a major research paper as well as descriptive, expository, and argumentative writing, students develop their writing through practice and revision. Through rigorous analysis of published writing, students learn to be critical and questioning readers, and learn the methods of peer critique. In this course, students engage in critical reading and thinking, connecting the writing process to intellectual engagement. This course is conventionally taken not later than one of the first two semesters in residence.
A course in library research methods introduces students to academic research and prepares them for the research responsibilities they will have in their college courses. Students learn to find relevant sources using a variety of tools and to evaluate those sources critically. This course is taken concurrently with and is coordinated with the writing course.
Intended Outcomes. Students who have completed the course in writing can
- organize ideas logically and construct persuasive and informative written arguments.
- employ a variety of techniques to develop a research paper.
- understand methods of planning and revising in writing.
- demonstrate correct grammar and mechanics.
- use proper quotation and citation techniques. Students who have completed a course in library research methods can
- cite sources in MLA style.
- use a variety of research tools both inside and outside the library.
- understand how to design a search strategy.
- evaluate the material they retrieve for scholarly rigor and reliability.
Courses that fulfill the Requirement include:
Fine Arts (one 3-4 hour course or equivalent)
Study in the fine arts engages students in the broader questions of human potential. In some courses, students actively engage in creative work, making aesthetic judgments and distinctions through the act of creation. In other courses, students learn to appreciate and understand artistic expression through careful study.
Intended Outcomes. Students who have completed a course in Fine Arts can
- develop creative or interpretive skills to respond to questions of human meaning.
- make aesthetic judgments of the work of others.
Courses that fulfill the Fine Arts Requirement include:
Natural Sciences (one 4-5 hour course)
Students study the natural sciences to understand the workings of nature, how it is structured, and how it functions. Lab courses in the natural sciences introduce students to experimentation using the scientific method; students come to know the natural world through the testing of hypotheses and the development of scientific theory. Students in natural science courses come to understand the role of science in the lives of individuals and in society as a whole.
Intended Outcomes: Students who have completed a course in Natural Sciences can
- demonstrate an understanding of the principles that underlie one area of the natural sciences.
- articulate and implement the strategies of scientific exploration, including the formulation and testing of hypotheses.
- employ logical means of reasoning to gain confidence in their own assessment of the world around them.
- answer questions about the formation and structure of the physical world.
- address real-world problems and make educated decisions.
Courses that fulfill the Natural Sciences requirement include:
Physical Sciences (one 4-5 hour course)
The physical sciences are those natural sciences that encompass matter or energy, including chemistry and physics. Lab courses in the physical sciences enable students to gain an understanding of the physical laws governing the universe. These courses employ quantitative methods in assessing the workings of natural phenomena. As in the natural sciences, courses in the physical sciences engage students in work with the scientific method, testing hypotheses and developing theory.
Intended Outcomes. Students who have completed a course in Physical Sciences demonstrate understanding of the principles that underlie one area of the physical sciences:
- articulate the strategies of scientific exploration, including the formulation and testing of hypotheses.
- understand the connection of quantitative evidence to scientific theories of the makeup of matter and energy.
- answer questions about the formation and structure of the physical world.
- address real-world problems and make educated decisions.
Courses that fulfill the Physical Sciences requirement include:
Quantitative and Symbolic Reasoning (one 3-5 hour course)
Quantitative and symbolic reasoning is a necessary skill involving interpreting and reasoning with mathematical ideas and numbers. Courses in this area entail reasoning with data and modeling with functions, reading graphs, drawing inferences, and recognizing sources of error. The courses enable students to assess quantitative evidence and make reasoned judgments on the basis of such evidence. Some courses in this category involve construction and analysis of mathematical and/or statistical models and/or significant formal logic components. Other courses primarily apply quantitative methods to areas of knowledge in the humanities, natural sciences, or social sciences.
Intended Outcomes. Students who have completed a course in Quantitative and Symbolic Reasoning can
- analyze quantitative or symbolic information to solve problems in their daily lives.
- evaluate data and arrive at conclusions about their meaning.
- assess the validity or soundness of quantitative and/or symbolic argument.
- interpret symbolic representations and apply quantitative methods to solve problems and answer questions.
Courses that fulfill the Quantitative and Symbolic Reasoning requirement include:
Humanities (two 3-4 hour courses)
The humanities seek to answer questions of human meaning by studying cultural products of civilization. Students of the humanities learn techniques of interpretation in order to begin the process of coming to terms with the rich, challenging, and often-contradictory understandings of what it means to be human. Some courses aim to enable a critical understanding of artistic expression, providing students with a variety of critical and analytic approaches to literature and other texts. Other courses address cultural epochs in history and explore ways in which works of literature and art function within societies.
Intended Outcomes: Students who have completed a course in Humanities can
- demonstrate an expanded, reflective perspective of themselves and of others.
- express themselves effectively in their written and oral expression.
- respond articulately to broad questions that have faced human civilizations.
Courses that fulfill the Humanities requirement include:
Languages (two 3-4 hour courses in one language)
Courses in Modern Languages seek to develop the student’s understanding of connections between language and culture and of the importance of cultural factors in shaping human life. In studying another language and culture, students gain awareness of the many possibilities for human life through new understanding of worldviews different from their own.
Intended Outcomes. Students who have completed two courses in a Modern Language can
- read, write, speak, and listen in a language other than English.
- understand the obligations of global citizens.
- appreciate the literature and cultural productions of a specific culture.
- assess the different literary and cultural genres of a specific culture and how those genres function within it.
- understand how language shapes the content and manner of thought.
Courses that fulfill the Languages requirement include:
Social Sciences (two 3-4 hour courses)
Courses in the social sciences study human relationships and human interactions. The social sciences attempt to understand behaviors of groups and individuals, investigate relationships between and among societies and individuals, value multiple perspectives, analyze human society, rely on quantitative and qualitative evidence, and model social systems and institutions. Courses in the social sciences incorporate an empirical approach to investigate issues addressing the intersections of individuals, groups, and social institutions.
Intended Outcomes. Students who have completed a course in Social Sciences can
- demonstrate an understanding of the principles that underlie one area of the social sciences.
- understand the various methodologies in the social sciences.
- evaluate significant historical, contemporary, and/or public issues.
Courses that fulfill the Social Sciences requirement include:
Religious and Philosophical Issues (one 3-4 hour course)
Religious and philosophical issues are grounded in questions about being human and questions raised by the human condition. These questions include inquiry about meaning and purpose in the universe independent of human choices; human freedom; how humans make meaning; and ultimately what humans can hope. Examples of particular questions in these areas are whether there is a God, and if so, what is the nature of God’s being; whether human beings are free; and whether human consciousness survives the death of the body. Courses in this area may consider the relations of human beings individually and collectively to the larger whole or cosmos and/or to the source of being.
Intended Outcomes. Students who have completed a course in Religious and Philosophical Issues can
- recognize and understand historically important issues and questions in religious and philosophical traditions.
- read religious and philosophical texts and analyze their meanings, arguments, and implications.
- describe religious and philosophical beliefs and construct arguments of their own based on awareness of previous religious and philosophical work.
Courses that fulfill the Religious and Philosophical Issues requirement include:
Civic Issues and Responsibility (one 3-4 hour course)
Illinois College prepares students to lead lives of active civic engagement. Courses in this area prepare students to appreciate multiple perspectives on civic life and institutions, and to explore issues facing civil societies and governments. Students reflect on the ethical dimensions of civic life, considering the individual’s obligations in a pluralistic society
Intended Outcomes. Students who have completed a course in Civic Issues and Responsibility can
- understand the broader processes and behaviors associated with political and social systems.
- negotiate multiple perspectives of common problems in civic life.
- understand constitutional and political processes, public policy issues, and international relations.
Courses that fulfill the Civic Issues and Responsibility requirement include:
Global Issues and Cultural Awareness (one 3-4 hour course)
Courses in Global Issues and Cultural Awareness develop the student’s knowledge of global issues and distinctive cultures through examination of the literature, institutions, religions, values, and/or economic and political systems from diverse global contexts. In these courses, students learn of the interdependence of nations and peoples.
Intended Outcomes. Students who have completed a course in Global Issues and Cultural Awareness can
• comprehend issues such as war and peace, environmental challenges, intercultural dynamics, international trade, and world health.
• compare social, economic, cultural, and political experiences from a broad perspective.
Courses that fulfill the Global Issues and Cultural Awareness requirement include:
Elective courses provide students the opportunity to explore issues of particular interest to them outside the core discipline of their majors. As with all academic decisions, students should choose elective courses in consultation with their advisors.
Convocation, derived from the Latin vocare or “calling”, means a calling together of a community. At Illinois College, we gather together in weekly convocations to link the intellectual discourse of the classroom to the lives we live outside the classroom. Convocations feature speakers from around the world on a variety of topics, theatrical performers,musicians, and others.
The Academic Major
Students must complete requirements for at least one academic major from the following disciplines or programs. Exceptions are possible for interdisciplinary majors or combined majors approved by the faculty, and academic minors are possible in some disciplines or programs. The requirements for the major must be completed with an average of ‘C’ (2.0) or above including courses outside the major discipline when such courses are specifically required of the major.
Combined Degree Programs
A student who successfully completes one of the defined combined degree programs receives appropriate degrees from both cooperating institutions at the end of one unified plan of study. Special requirements and regulations apply to these programs.
Illinois College cooperates with the University of Illinois College of Engineering, Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville College of Engineering, and Washington University School of Engineering in dual degree programs in engineering. During the three years at Illinois College, students follow the typical program for science students, with the addition of Introduction to Engineering 121, 122, and complete the specified courses required for a degree. Students seeking a career in engineering are advised to concentrate in Mathematics and Physics, or Chemistry for Chemical Engineering students only. Faculty approval is given if a 2.75 average (on a 4.0 scale) is achieved in courses in Division II (Biology, Chemistry, Computer Science, Mathematics, Physics). During the two years at one of the universities, students complete studies in a specified field of engineering. Upon completion of the program, students qualify for degrees from both institutions. See page 123.
Illinois College cooperates with Washington University in a combined degree program in occupational therapy. Above average grades are necessary for admission. Candidates for this program fulfill all the general requirements for graduation at Illinois College and carry a specific concentration in biology or psychology. After three years at Illinois College, students may apply for admission to the graduate program in occupational therapy at Washington University. A cumulative grade point average of 3.0 and a recommendation from the faculty are required for admission into the program. Admission is competitive, however Washington University gives preference to qualified students from its 3-2 affiliates. Students admitted to the graduate program at Washington University will be granted a degree from Illinois College after successful completion of the first year of the professional program. See page 38.
Illinois College cooperates with the Mayo School of Health-Related Sciences in a 3-1 program in cytotechnology. See page 37.
Illinois College cooperates with St. John’s Hospital, Springfield, Illinois, in a 3-1 program in medical technology. See page 38.
Other Combined Degree Programs
Students who have completed all of the general requirements for graduation, who maintain a 2.500 cumulative grade point average, who have enrolled at Illinois College for at least three years without graduating, and who subsequently complete a professional degree program at an accredited professional school may, upon application, be eligible for baccalaureate degree from Illinois College.
Law School Advising Program
Students interested in pursuing admission to law school are encouraged to become a part of the law school advising program. Illinois College students can acquire the skills necessary to achieve success in law school through a variety of majors and courses. Although no particular major is designated for the program, students can benefit from faculty input when planning their courses, internships and the law school application process.
An integral part of the program is student participation in Phi Alpha Delta, Illinois College’s pre-law society. This student run organization sponsors activities which include visits to law schools, campus talks and convocations given by members of the legal profession, and social events with alumni who have attended law school.
Students who choose to participate in the law school advising program have a high success rate in applying to and graduating from law school. More information about the program, law school catalogs, law school events and the LSAT is available on the second floor of Kirby Hall.
Medical Professions Advising Program
The medical professions advising program is an essential resource for students considering application to graduate or professional programs such as:
||Physical Therapy |
|| Veterinary Medicine|
| Medical Technology
Students who take advantage of this resource work closely with faculty members from the sciences to plan coursework, research and internships that will assist them in meeting the requirements for admission to their chosen program. In all cases, students should meet with a medical professions advisor as early as possible to begin the process. Students who choose this program must be dedicated to achieving an exceptional academic record.
No student shall receive two degrees at the same commencement, but may be awarded any number of majors for which requirements have been completed. Any student with a bachelor’s degree (whether earned at Illinois College or another institution) may enroll as a candidate for an additional degree other than the one the graduate has already received. All the following conditions must be fulfilled:
- The candidate shall fulfill all the requirements for a major within the proposed second degree. The major must be different from the one completed for the first degree, and hours counted toward one major may not be counted toward the second major. In case certain courses are required for both majors, enough additional hours in one or both subjects shall be completed to provide the minimum number of hours required for the major in each subject.
- The candidate shall complete all the general requirements for graduation necessary for the degree which have not already been satisfied.
- The candidate shall enroll at Illinois College for not less than 24 additional semester hours following the awarding of the first degree.
- The candidate shall fulfill all requirements in effect at the time of (re)entry into Illinois College.
Declaring A Major
Students may choose a major field of academic interest and designate the degree desired at any time after arrival, but the choice must be made by the time Junior standing is achieved. When accepted by the head of the proposed major, students will plan with the head (or a designated member of the department) a consistent and unified program of study for the Junior and Senior years. In order to secure a proper sequence of courses and to insure maximum flexibility in program it is advisable for students to declare a major as early as possible, particularly for students planning graduate or professional study or for those preparing for certification as teachers in the public school system. Students interested in preparing for early childhood, elementary or secondary teaching should refer to the Education section of the Courses of Instruction. Questions on teacher certification should be directed to the Education Department.
It is the responsibility of students to check with their advisor regarding satisfactory completion of all major and teacher certification requirements.
An academic minor consists of 18 to 24 hours of work with a ‘C’ (2.0) average or better work as designated in a particular field. Students are not required to have a minor but may elect to complete one or more of them. Minors are currently available in Accounting, American Studies, Art, Biology, Business, Chemistry, Communication and Rhetorical Studies, Computer Science, Economics, English, Environmental Studies, Finance, French, Gender and Women’s Studies, Geography, German, Health, History, International Studies, Japanese, Mathematics, Music, Philosophy, Physics, Political Science, Psychology, Religion, Sociology, Spanish, and Theatre.
The Illinois College Advising Program’s mission is to help students to integrate into the IC family, discover their personal goals, focus their academic and extracurricular interests, pursue knowledge efficiently inside and out of the classroom, and prepare for career opportunities.
All faculty, staff, and students have a role in making advising work well. Our immediate goal is to ensure a smooth first-semester transition, and since the national research tells us that having a positive connection with a college employee and building a close network of friends are important, our advising system seeks to guarantee those outcomes.
All faculty members stand ready to answer questions or offer suggestions to students regarding academic matters, but each student has a designated faculty advisor who has access to academic records and student-specific information. This pre-major advisor seeks to help students to maintain good academic standing, engage in fulfilling and enriching activities, and decide upon a major. Once the student selects a major, an advisor from the major department provides continuing guidance in those areas as well as major-specific course and career concerns. The advisor seeks to prepare students for the post-IC transition by ensuring that students are prepared for their ideal next steps and the maximum possible number of other career options.
All staff members stand ready to help each student to find the answers to their questions and tap the existing extracurricular, counseling, and health services to their fullest extents.
On an informal basis, staff members also can offer guidance in career planning.
All students should see their advisor as one of their most important teachers, meet regularly with their advisor, and feel welcome to ask any question for which they need an answer. The student should think carefully and deeply about his or her interests and seek the advice or knowledge he or she needs to have a fulfilling and successful experience at Illinois College and a productive life of leadership and service after graduating.
Students who wish to change their advisor should consult with an academic dean.
Students may participate in the commencement ceremony immediately following completion of degree requirements, and in special circumstances may participate in the commencement ceremony immediately preceding completion of degree requirements. See the Registrar or the Academic Dean for details.
Unit of Credit
The unit of credit is the semester hour, which represents a 50 minute period each week for approximately 15 weeks, including examinations.
Classification of Students
Students are classified according to the number of semester hours earned previously to the current semester, including all transfer hours accepted toward an Illinois College degree:
Course Numbering and Requirements
||less than 27 hours |
|| 27 up to 57 hours|
|| 57 up to 88 hours|
|| 88 or more hours|
The semester hours of credit are indicated by the number in parentheses following the course title. Classes for which five or fewer students register on registration day may be withdrawn from the schedule for that semester.
Unless explicitly waived by the instructor, all prerequisites must be completed with the grade of C or above. Placement tests provide additional guidance in course selection.