General Elective Courses in and out of POSTECH
General Elective Courses in and out of POSTECH
  • Reporter Kim Su-min
  • 승인 2019.06.13 13:18
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▲The Mueunjae Memorial Hall, where almost every General Education courses are lectured
▲The Mueunjae Memorial Hall, where almost every General Education courses are lectured

Postechians who entered before 2017 should earn 15 credits in General Elective courses and Postechians who entered after 2018 should earn 18 credits. In other words, all Postechians should take five or six General Elective courses to graduate. Every regular semester, more than 30 General Elective courses are available for them, which are available for about 2000 students in total. The total number of students who can take General Elective courses seems to be enough. However, when compared with the number of General Elective courses listed on the course catalog, which is more than 100, the number of courses seems not to be enough. Some courses have not been available for several years: foreign language courses disappear from 2018, gender studies course was only available in 2018, and many advanced courses. This situation can decrease the right of choice of students. Moreover, according to anonymous reports, some students have complaints about the quality of General Education courses. Some of them said it was the reason they went the domestic credits exchange.
To widen the perspectives and experiences of students, POSTECH allows the domestic credits exchange. It is allowed for regular semesters (spring or fall) and seasonal semesters (summer or winter). Students who enrolled at POSTECH could take courses in other universities: Seoul National University (SNU), KAIST, DGIST, Ewha Woman’s University, Sungkyunkwan University, Yonsei University, Sookmyoung Women’s University, and Korea National University of Arts for this summer semester. They can take both Major and General Education courses. However, because POSTECH does not provide General Education courses during seasonal semesters, students usually take General Education courses in other universities during vacation. Kim Sung-nam (LIFE 17), who had gone to SNU, said that he wanted to take General Education courses unavailable at POSTECH and interact with various people with various dreams, not engineering students.
From 2016 to 2018, about 100 students went to other universities every seasonal semester. The number of students who took General Education courses in the seasonal sessions of other universities has tripled from 55 in 2016 to 169 in 2017 and 176 in 2018. They earned five credits on average, which is about one-third of their required number of General Elective credits for graduation. It is obvious that a lot of students have started to take General Education courses out of POSTECH recently and the number is in the trend of increasing. For the same period, the number of students who took General Elective courses in POSTECH is decreasing. When asked about the difference between General Education courses in POSTECH and SNU, Kim said, “I think the quality of General Education is determined by the professors. Because there are even more professors for those courses in SNU, I could select a professor who would provide more helpful contents to me.”
Recently, the number of General Elective courses listed on the course catalog increased to more than 140, since the Division of Humanities and Social Sciences has opened the HSS minoring courses and WI (Writing Intensive) subjects. It should not stop as just opening new courses. It would be required to provide an actually helpful environment for General Education of Postechians.


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