Education requirements prior to fall 2010

The University changed its liberal education requirements in fall 2010. If you were admitted before fall 2010 and have remaining liberal education requirements to complete, you may use the requirements that were in place at that time. Alternatively, you may contact your advisor to request moving to the current education requirements.

Any requirements that you completed before the change are unaffected and you do not need to “retake” the requirement. This includes any completed courses that fulfilled requirements at the time you were admitted (including approved transfer, non-degree or PSEO courses). For details on your completed liberal education requirements, see your APAS report.

To complete any remaining requirements, search for current liberal education category names in the Class Schedule and Course Catalog. The pre-fall 2010 requirements and any corresponding new category names are listed below.

Pre-fall 2010 liberal education requirements


Diversified core

The diversified core guides you through the "why" and "how" of different academic disciplines. These classes will equip you with a broad range of tools that can be used to approach problems in everyday life and work, and, ultimately, help you make a positive difference within communities, society, and the world. Students are required to satisfy all seven core requirements.

Core requirements for students admitted before fall 2010 Required credits Current designated core
Historical Perspectives 3 credits Historical Perspectives (His)
Literature and Other Humanities 6 credits; with at least 1 course in literature, and 1 course in other humanities Literature (Litr). “Other Humanities” is now “Arts/Humanities” (AH)
Mathematical Thinking 3 credits Mathematical Thinking (Mth)
Physical and Biological Sciences 8 credits; with at least 1 course with lab or field experience in physical sciences, and at least 1 course with lab or field experience in biological sciences Biological Sciences (Biol) and Physical Sciences (Phy)
Social Sciences 6 credits Social Sciences (SocS)
Designated themes

The designated themes are topics central to an understanding of contemporary life. Investigating these themes helps you prepare to become knowledgeable, ethical, and engaged public citizens. You are required to satisfy four of the five themes.

Theme requirements for students admitted before fall 2010 Required credits Current designated theme
Citizenship and Public Ethics 3 credits Civic Life and Ethics
Cultural Diversity 3 credits Diversity and Social Justice in the U.S. 
The Environment 3 credits The Environment
International Perspectives 3 credits Global Perspectives
Writing intensive

The third facet of liberal education at the University of Minnesota is the writing requirement, which has two components: First-Year Writing and Writing Intensive courses.

First-Year Writing

All students are expected to complete the first-year writing requirement (WRIT 1301, 1401, or equivalent) within their first two semesters of registration.

Writing Intensive

In addition to the first-year writing requirement, students must complete four Writing Intensive (WI) courses. These courses help students understand what it means to write in various disciplines. Two of the four courses must be completed at the upper-division (3xxx or higher) level, and one of the two upper-division courses must be within a student's major field of study.