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General Education Requirements

The General Education (GE) curriculum at Thurgood Marshall College is designed to provide students with:

  • The academic skills and basic knowledge to pursue any major.
  • Flexibility to enhance the curriculum with unique educational experiences.
  • The opportunity to enhance your critical writing skills through our unique freshman writing sequence focusing on contemporary American society and culture.
  • A broad liberal arts and science background relevant to today’s society.

Each of the General Education requirements is outlined below, along with a list of approved courses to satisfy that requirement. 

Dimensions of Culture (3 courses)

Students are required to complete a three-quarter core sequence entitled Dimensions of Culture: Diversity, Justice, and Imagination. This three-course core sequence must be taken for a letter grade.

As a three-course sequence, DOC 1: Reading Diversity, DOC 2: Arguing Justice, and DOC 3: Imagination offer intensive instruction in university-level expository writing. Students entering as first-years are expected to fulfill this writing requirement within the first two years of residency and must complete the DOC sequence at UCSD (no exceptions).

All students must satisfy the UC Entry Level Writing Requirement (ELWR) before enrolling in DOC 2 and DOC 3. First-year students who do not take DOC 1 in fall quarter are advised to complete DOC 1, 2, and 3 in their second year.

Learn more about the Dimensions of Culture program

DOC 1 - Diversity (4 units)
Fall Quarter only

DOC 2 - Justice (6 units)
Winter Quarter only

DOC 3 - Imagination (6 units)
Spring Quarter only

Natural Science (3 courses)

Students are required to complete a total of three (3) Natural Science courses: one in Biology, one in Chemistry, and one in Physics.

*Students are encouraged to select Natural Science courses that can overlap with sciences courses in their major.


  • ANTH 2
  • COGS 17
  • BILD 1, 2, 3, 7, 10, 12, 20, 22, 26, 30, 36, 38


  • CHEM 4, 6A, 6B, 6C, 6AH, 6BH, 6CH, 11, 12, 13


  • PHYS 1A/1AL, 1B/1BL, 1C/1CL, 2A, 2B, 2C, 4A, 4B, 4C, 5, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13
  • SIO 1, 10, 12, 15, 16, 20, 30, 35, 40, 45, 50

Mathematics, Statistics and Logic (2 courses)

Students are required to complete two (2) courses for Mathematics, Statistics and Logic. Students have three options to complete this requirement from the approved list of courses:

Option A: Complete two courses in the Mathematics/Advanced Statistics category.
Option B: Complete one course in the Mathematics/Advanced Statistics category and one course in either the Introductory Statistics category or the Computer Programming & Logic category.

Option C: Complete one course in the Introductory Statistics category and one course in the Computer Programming & Logic category.

*Students are encouraged to select Mathematics, Statistics, and Logic courses that can overlap with mathematics, statistics, and logic courses in their major.

Mathematics, Advanced Statistics

  • Biology (BIEB) 100
  • MATH 3C
  • MATH 4C
  • MATH 10A, 10B, or 10C
  • MATH 20A, 20B, or 20C
  • MATH 180A or 181A

Introductory Statistics

  • Cognitive Science (COGS) 14A
  • Political Science (POLI) 30
  • Psychology (PSYC) 60
  • Sociology (SOCI) 60

Computer Programming & Logic

  • CSE 5A, 8A or 11
  • CSS 1
  • Linguistics (LIGN) 17
  • MAE 5, 9 or 10
  • Philosophy (PHIL) 10 or 12

Humanities/Culture (2 courses)

Students are required to complete two Humanities/Culture courses from the approved list of courses in domestic and global cultures.


  • African American Studies (AAS) 10
  • Ethnic Studies (ETHN) 1, 2, 3 or 20
  • History (HILD) 7A, 7B, 7C, 10, 11, 12 or 14
  • Latin American Studies (LATI) 10, 50
  • Literatures in English (LTEN) 27, 28 or 29
  • Literatures in Cultural Studies (LTCS) 50, 52
  • Study of Religion (RELI) 2
  • Third World Studies (TWS) 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, or 26

Fine Arts (1 course)

Students are required to complete one Fine Arts course among the list of approved courses in Music, Theatre & Dance, or Visual Arts.

Fine Arts

  • Music (MUS) 4 - 19, 20, *80
  • Theatre/General (TDGE) 1, 5, 10-12
  • Theatre/History (TDHT) 21, 22, 23
  • Visual Arts (VIS) 1-3, 20-22 or 84

*MUS 80 must be taken for 4 units to count toward the Fine Arts GE.

Disciplinary Breadth (4 courses)

Students are required to complete four 4-unit Disciplinary Breadth courses outside the major field of study.

  • Two courses must be upper division, one of which must include significant writing.
  • Students with a major in the INTERDEPARTMENTAL/INTERDISCIPLINARY column may take courses the department/program or major would NOT accept as long as the courses are outside the primary focus of the major but should first verify the application of coursework with an Academic Counselor.
  • Courses used for Disciplinary Breadth cannot overlap with courses for major.
  • Please contact Academic Advising prior to enrollment in courses from academic departments/programs not listed.
  • Transfer students with IGETC or UC Reciprocity only need to complete two upper division courses, one of which must include significant writing.
  • Transfer students without an articulation agreement, please see an Academic Counselor.

Social Sciences

  • Anthropology
  • Cognitive Science
  • Communication
  • Computational Social Science
  • Design (DSGN)
  • Economics
  • Education Studies
  • Environmental Studies (ENVR)
  • International Studies / Social Science
  • Human Developmental Sciences
  • Joint Math/Economics (EN28)
  • Law and Society
  • Linguistics
  • Management (MGT)
  • Political Science
  • Psychology
  • Sociology
  • Urban Studies & Planning

Natural Science, Math & Engineering

  • Bioengineering
  • Biology
  • Chemistry & Biochemistry
  • CSE
  • Data Science
  • Earth Science at SIO
  • ECE
  • Environmental Systems (ESYS)
  • Joint Math/Economics (MA33)
  • MAE
  • Mathematics
  • Physics

Humanities/Fine Arts

  • Classical Studies
  • German Studies
  • History
  • International Studies / History, Literature
  • Italian Studies
  • Literature
  • Music
  • Philosophy
  • Study of Religion
  • Theatre & Dance
  • Visual Arts

Foreign Languages

  • American Sign Language
  • Chinese St./Language
  • Japanese St./Language
  • Jewish Studies (Hebrew)
  • Linguistics/Foreign Lang. (lower division)
  • Linguistics/Heritage Lang. (upper division)
  • Literature/Foreign Lang.

Interdepartmental / Interdisciplinary

  • Chinese Studies
  • Critical Gender Studies
  • Ethnic Studies
  • Global Health
  • Japanese Studies
  • Jewish Studies
  • Latin American Studies
  • Public Health
  • Third World Studies

Public Service Options for Academic Credit

Marshall College invests heavily in the role we play off campus. Involvement in public service enables students to make a significant difference in our community. There are very exciting connections between formal education and life beyond the classroom. Students who participate in one of these opportunities may satisfy one upper division disciplinary breadth requirement regardless of major discipline.

Academic Internship Program

Partnership Schools Program

Partners at Learning Program

Global TIES 

General Education Requirements for Transfer Students

General Education requirements will vary depending on your transfer agreement. Please review the options below to learn more about how your transfer agreement affects your GE requirements.  Transfer agreements – including but not limited to IGETC and Partial-IGETC – apply exclusively to students admitted as transfers. They may not apply to students admitted as first-year students.      

Select Your Transfer Agreement

IGETC or Partial IGETC Certification

For students who attended a California Community College and received an IGETC or Partial IGETC Certification.

Learn More

UC Reciprocity

For students who completed all lower-division GE requirements at their previous UC institution.

Learn More

Articulation (No Transfer Agreement)

Transfer students without IGETC, Partial-IGETC or UC Reciprocity are considered Articulation.

Learn More