Engage & Empower

The purpose of the General Education curriculum is to provide a unifying core experience for all undergraduate students at NDMU to develop the skills that are highly sought after by employers:

  • Critical Thinking
  • Complex Problem Solving
  • Creativity
  • Written & Oral Communication

All courses are designed to inspire a free spirit of inquiry through observation, analysis, and reflection. 

Learning Beyond the Classroom

Essential to the NDMU experience, opportunities to help the community and tackle real-world challenges are offered through Service-Learning and Experiential Learning pursuits such as internships, practicum assignments, clinicals, independent research, and study abroad. All require purposeful reflection on the experience which helps you gain insight into yourself and your view of the world. As part of the requirements for graduation, all Women’s College students will participate in at least one Experiential Learning opportunity.

How It Impacts You

By taking courses in a variety of subject areas, you will gain a broader perspective and a more holistic worldview by seeing how ideas and concepts intersect across disciplines. At NDMU, you’ll have opportunities to explore questions you may have never thought to ask, helping you to develop as an individual and a professional who can make a profound impact on the world around you.

Learning Outcomes

Think Critically & Analytically

(7 credits | 2 courses)

Evaluate and interpret information; examine and defend arguments; and think constructively and critically to solve real life problems.


  • One 4-credit First Year Seminar (NDMU-100 and lab) for first-year Women’s College students; An alternative Collegiate Seminar (NDMU-200) for transfer and adult students
  • One additional approved course in this area
Communicate Creatively & Effectively

(9 credits | 3 courses)

Develop proficiency in written and oral communication and artistic expression across disciplines.


  • One written communication course (ENG 101 - College Writing)
  • One oral communication course (COM 106 - Communicating in the 21st Century)
  • One artistic expression course
Investigate Through Scientific & Quantitative Reasoning

(7-8 credits | 2 courses)

Analyze and produce quantitative or symbolic models; select and employ quantitative methods to solve applied problems; use scientific methods to investigate questions in the natural world; evaluate scientific arguments based on data, methods, and assumptions, and pose evidence-based solutions.


  • One 4-credit science course 
  • One quantitative reasoning course
Pursue Meaning, Purpose & Well-Being

(7 credits | 3 courses)

Develop and evaluate ethical values, explore spirituality and faith, and embrace strategies and practices promoting holistic wellness


  • One religious studies course (RST 105)
  • One philosophy course (PHL 201)
  • One 1-credit wellness course
Understand & Value Diverse Identities & Perspectives

(9 credits | 3 courses)

Develop a global mindset and language skills to operate comfortably across borders and cultures. Analyze the impact of diversity (race, ethnicity, religion, and gender) on the individual and society.


  • One foreign language course at the 102 level or above
  • One intercultural course
  • One diversity course
Become an Engaged Citizen

(3 credits | 1 course)

Cultivate civic commitment as global citizens. Develop tools of engagement to assess and act on current civic issues. Engage in teamwork in the service of engaged citizenship.


  • One approved course

Course Requirements

To ensure a solid foundation of general knowledge and a broad liberal arts background, NDMU requires approximately one-third of coursework in Engage and Empower courses. 

In areas where there are options to select from approved classes offered by more than one department, selections must satisfy the following requirements over the course of General Education studies:

  • One course in a social and behavioral science
  • One course with a fine art[s] designation
  • One course with a history designation
  • One course with a literature designation
  • One 200 level or higher RST or PHL course

Additional Requirements

  • No course taken may be used to meet more than one of the “learning outcome” groups.
  • No courses may be used for the major (except toward completion of a second major or a minor).
  • Native speakers who are bilingual should consult with the Chair of the Language Department (Dr. Rachel Burk) for guidance regarding the language requirement:

Non-Native Speakers of English

International students may fulfill the General Education Foreign Language Requirement in one of three ways:

  • TOEFL Exam: At entrance, provide evidence of a score of 550 or higher on the TOEFL exam, or 213 or higher on the TOEFL: BT Test or 80 or higher on the IBT Test.
  • Language Department Placement Exam: At entrance, score on the advanced level on all parts of the language department's English Placement Test.
  • Language Department Placement Exam: Complete LEF-203LEF-204LCL-331 or LCL-332, based on the results of the English Placement Test.

All departments will designate a course within the major that will satisfy the Technological Competency requirement that will be assessed as part of General Education assessment.