.03 General Education Requirements for Public Institutions.

A. While public institutions have the autonomy to design their general education program to meet their unique needs and mission, that program shall conform to the definitions and common standards in this chapter, and incorporate the general education knowledge and skills required by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education Standards for Accreditation. No later than August 1, 2017, a public institution shall satisfy the general education requirement by:

(1) Requiring each program leading to the A.A. or A.S. degree to include not less than 28 and not more than 36 semester hours, and each baccalaureate degree program to include not less than 38 and not more than 46 semester hours of required core courses, with the core requiring, at a minimum, course work in each of the following five areas:

(a) Arts and humanities,

(b) Social and behavioral sciences,

(c) Biological and physical sciences,

(d) Mathematics, and

(e) English composition; or

(2) Conforming with COMAR 13B.02.02.16D(2)(b)—(c).

B. Each core course used to satisfy the distribution requirements of §A(1) of this regulation shall carry at least 3 semester hours.

C. General education programs of public institutions shall require at least:

(1) Two courses in arts and humanities;

(2) Two courses in social and behavioral sciences;

(3) Two science courses, at least one of which shall be a laboratory course;

(4) One course in mathematics, having performance expectations demonstrating a level of mathematical maturity beyond the Maryland College and Career Ready Standards in Mathematics (including problem-solving skills, and mathematical concepts and techniques that can be applied in the studentís program of study); and

(5) One course in English composition, completed with a grade of C- or better.

D. Institution-Specific Requirements.

(1) In addition to the five required areas in §A of this regulation, a public institution may include up to 8 semester hours in course work outside the five areas. These courses may be integrated into other general education courses or may be presented as separate courses. Examples include, but are not limited to, Health, Diversity, and Computer Literacy.

(2) Public institutions may not include the courses in this section in a general education program unless they provide academic content and rigor equivalent to the areas in §A(1) of this regulation.

E. General education programs leading to the A.A.S. degree shall include at least 18 semester hours from the same course list designated by the sending institution for the A.A. and A.S. degrees. The A.A.S. degree shall include at least one 3-semester-hour course from each of the five areas listed in §A(1) of this regulation.

F. A course in a discipline listed in more than one of the areas of general education may be applied only to one area of general education.

G. A public institution may allow a speech communication or foreign language course to be part of the arts and humanities category.

H. Composition and literature courses may be placed in the arts and humanities area if literature is included as part of the content of the course.

I. Public institutions may not include physical education skills courses as part of the general education requirements.

J. General education courses shall reflect current scholarship in the discipline and provide reference to theoretical frameworks and methods of inquiry appropriate to academic disciplines.

K. Courses that are theoretical may include applications, but all applications courses shall include theoretical components if they are to be included as meeting general education requirements.

L. Notwithstanding §A(1) of this regulation, a public 4-year institution may require 48 semester hours of required core courses if courses upon which the institution's curriculum is based carry 4 semester hours.

M. Public institutions shall develop systems to ensure that courses approved for inclusion on the list of general education courses are designed and assessed to comply with the requirements of this chapter.