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General Education Goals

In addition to major specific objectives established by each academic department, Missouri Southern State University has implemented a general education program consistent with the State of Missouri's Core Curriculum Transfer (CORE 42). After completing the CORE 42, students should demonstrate the following competencies:


  • Analyze and evaluate their own and others' speaking and writing.
  • Conceive of writing as a recursive process that involves many strategies, including generating material, evaluating sources when used, drafting, revising, and editing.
  • Make formal written and oral presentations employing correct diction, syntax, usage, grammar, and mechanics.
  • Focus on a purpose (e.g., explaining, problem solving, argument) and vary approaches to writing and speaking based on that purpose.
  • Respond to the needs of different venues and audiences and choose words for appropriateness and effect.
  • Communicate effectively in groups by listening, reflecting, and responding appropriately and in context.
  • Use mathematical and statistical models, standard quantitative symbols, and various graphical tactics to present information with clarity, accuracy, and precision.


  • Written:
    • Demonstrate critical and analytical thinking for reading, writing, and speaking.
    • Compose sound and effective sentences.
    • Compose unified, coherent, and developed paragraphs.
    • Understand and use a recursive writing process to develop strategies for generating, revising, editing, and proofreading texts.
    • Produce rhetorically effective discourse for subject, audience, and purpose.
    • Demonstrate effective research and information literacy skills.
  • Oral:
    • Use productive imagination for the discovery and evaluation of appropriate arguments relating to a chosen topic through effective research.
    • Understand the basic process of audience analysis.
    • Use, identify, and create speeches for different types of speaking purposes.
    • Demonstrate effective preparation skills in the organization of speeches into three appropriate sections and preparing each section using the appropriate information and transitions between information and sections.
    • Utilize and understand the patterns of organization to structure information for each specific type of speech. Students will use parallel ideas and information on different levels of abstraction in these patterns.
    • Demonstrate effective skill at composing and developing arguments with appropriate support that is unified, coherent, and fully developed utilizing the tenets of good writing and research.
    • Understand the complex issue of good delivery and show improved personal confidence and the ability to manage communication apprehension.
    • Demonstrate effective listening skills as it relates to critical understanding of speech topics and critique of that speaking.
    • Demonstrate that they understand and take part in ethical speaking and listening during presentations.
    • Understand communication ethics for both speech preparation and critiquing of peer speeches by utilizing responsible research and citing sources, and using emotional and logical appeals responsibly.
    • Understand the role of public speaking in citizenry and how public speaking can contribute to success in the classroom and society.

Higher Order Thinking:

  • Recognize the problematic elements of presentations of information and argument and to formulate diagnostic questions for resolving issues and solving problems.
  • Use linguistic, mathematical, or other symbolic approaches to describe problems, identify alternative solutions, and make reasoned choices among those solutions.
  • Analyze and synthesize information from a variety of sources and apply the results to resolving complex situations and problems.
  • Defend conclusions using relevant evidence and reasoned argument.
  • Reflect on and evaluate their critical-thinking processes.


  • Develop and understand the moral and ethical values of a diverse society.
  • Develop the ability to analyze the ethical implications of actions and decisions.
  • Compare and contrast historical and cultural ethical perspectives and belief systems.
  • Utilize cultural, behavioral, and historical knowledge to clarify and articulate a personal value system.
  • Recognize the ramifications of one's value decisions on self and others.
  • Recognize conflicts within and between value systems and recognize and analyze ethical issues as they arise in a variety of contexts.
  • Consider multiple perspectives, recognize biases, deal with ambiguity, and take a reasonable position.

Managing Information:

  • Locate, organize, store, retrieve, evaluate, synthesize, and annotate information from print, electronic, and other sources in preparation for solving problems and making informed decisions.
  • Access and generate information from a variety of sources, including the most contemporary technological information services.
  • Evaluate information for its currency, usefulness, truthfulness, and accuracy.
  • Organize, store, and retrieve information efficiently.
  • Reorganize information for an intended purpose, such as research projects.
  • Present information clearly and concisely, using traditional and contemporary technologies.

Social and Behavioral Sciences:

  • Explain social institutions, structures, and processes across a range of historical periods and cultures.
  • Develop and communicate hypothetical explanations for individual human behavior within the large-scale historical and social context.
  • Draw on history and the social sciences to evaluate contemporary problems.
  • Describe and analytically compare social, cultural, and historical settings and processes other than one's own.
  • Articulate the interconnectedness of people and places around the globe.
  • Describe and explain the constitutions of the United States and Missouri.

Humanities and Fine Arts:

  • Describe the scope and variety of works in the humanities and fine arts (e.g., fine and performing arts, literature, speculative thought).
  • Explain the historical, cultural, and social contexts of the humanities and fine arts.
  • Identify the aesthetic standards used to make critical judgments in various artistic fields.
  • Develop a plausible understanding of the differences and relationships between formal and popular culture.
  • Articulate a response based upon aesthetic standards to observance of works in the humanities and fine arts.

Mathematical Sciences:

  • Describe contributions to society from the discipline of mathematics.
  • Recognize and use connections within mathematics and between mathematics and other disciplines.
  • Read, interpret, analyze, and synthesize quantitative data (e.g., graphs, tables, statistics, survey data) and make reasoned estimates.
  • Formulate and use generalizations based upon pattern recognition.
  • Apply and use mathematical models (e.g., algebraic, geometric, statistical) to solve problems.

Natural Sciences:

  • Explain how to use the scientific method and how to develop and test hypotheses in order to draw defensible conclusions.
  • Evaluate scientific evidence and argument.
  • Describe the basic principles of the natural world.
  • Describe concepts of the nature, organization, and evolution of living systems.
  • Explain how human interaction(s) affect living systems and the environment.

International Cultural Studies:

  • Use or interpret communication tools through which cultures develop and survive, such as language, arts, mathematics, science, and technology.
  • Explain the development of and compare the distinctive social institutions or art forms of more than one region of the world.
  • Identify some of the geographical, historical, political, economic, artistic, and environmental concerns of a culture other than their own as these concerns affect its social institutions.
  • Identify the ways in which values of at least one culture other than their own are expressed.
  • Identify the ways in which the values of a culture shape its responses to problems of international significance.
  • Describe past and contemporary issues that transcend national boundaries.

Health and Wellness:

  • Recognize and explain the value of physical activity, sound nutrition, and stress management for developing and maintaining a healthy body and mind.
  • Explain the role of functional testing, medical examinations, and adequately prescribed health intervention programs in modifying or eliminating identified health risks, and in addressing epidemiological concerns.
  • Describe the impact of preventative measure and appropriate responses to physical, spiritual, emotional, and mental challenges on the quality and length of life.
  • Evaluate, synthesize, and access consumer-related health and wellness materials.