Associate Degree Requirements - General Education

The Philosophy Statement

The faculty of Portland Community College affirms that a prime mission of the College is to aid in the development of educated members of society. Ideally, such individuals possess:

  • understanding of their culture and how it relates to other cultures
  • appreciation of history both from a global perspective and from a personal perspective, including an awareness of the role played by gender and by various cultures
  • understanding of themselves and their natural and technological environments
  • ability to reason qualitatively and quantitatively
  • ability to conceptually organize experience and discern its meaning
  • aesthetic and artistic values
  • understanding of the ethical and social requirements of responsible participation in society

Such endeavors are a lifelong undertaking. The General Education component of the associate's degree programs represents a major part of the College’s commitment to that process.

Approval of General Education Requirements

General Education requirements for degrees are recommended to the administration for approval by the EAC Degrees and Certificates Committee and the EAC. Candidates for any PCC associate's degree must satisfactorily complete the specific General Education requirements for that degree. Check specific degree requirements for details.

The General Education credits must come from the approved PCC General Education/Discipline Studies List.

In order to ensure a breadth of learning, which is the cornerstone of the General Education requirements, the following limitations apply:

  1. Courses taken to satisfy the basic college competencies in composition and mathematics will not be accepted.
  2. For AAS Degrees, no more than two courses may come from courses required by specific programs.*
  3. When an existing course meeting a General Education requirement is expanded into a multi-course sequence with the same course number with varying suffixes (e.g., 101 becomes 101a, 101b, 101c), any course in the sequence may be used to meet the General Education requirement. However, an individual student may use only one course in the sequence toward fulfillment of the requirement, even if the student takes multiple courses in the sequence.

*Note: Because of these restrictions, it is possible that a course is acceptable as General Education for some students while it is not acceptable for others. Degree candidates who are unsure of how the General Education Policy applies to their individual cases are responsible for seeking help from an advisor or counselor.

The complete and official list of courses approved as General Education/Discipline Studies is maintained by the Curriculum/General Education Committee of the Educational Advisory Council.

Criteria for General Education/Discipline Studies Course Approval are developed by the Curriculum Committee of the EAC based on the General Education Philosophy statement and the statewide outcomes and criteria for Discipline Studies for the AAOT. Courses seeking inclusion on the list follow the process for approval outlined on the Curriculum Office website. []

Policy/Standard Name: Associate Degree Requirements-General Education
Policy/Standard Identifier: A107
Units responsible for review and update: 
Degrees & Certificates Committee, Curriculum Committee
Approval: College President
Responsibility: Vice President for Academic Affairs
Date of Final Approval: April 2019
Effective Term: Fall 2019
Prior Versions: Yes