Division of Natural Sciences & Mathematics
The Division of Natural Sciences & Mathematics includes a laboratory-based, core program in the natural sciences during the sophomore year that fulfills the natural science requirements for non-science majors for the bachelor’s degree in all University programs. The NS 201 Biology I course also fulfills the requirement for any student continuing on in the sciences and needing a first semester course in biology. Students needing to fulfill a mathematics requirement for their major may take one or more of the mathematics courses offered by the division during their freshman or sophomore year. The mathematics courses are in the areas of applied mathematics, statistics, and calculus. The Division also offers students the opportunity to complete the natural science core courses during the summer between their freshman and sophomore years by participating in the CGS Natural Science London Summer Program. The summer program is competitive and standard Study Abroad requirements apply.
The one-year core program in the natural sciences takes students beyond learning the “facts” of science, an approach that is common to most general education or even specialized courses. The two core courses engage students in both the process and practice of science and provide a framework allowing them to better understand the natural world. Science, as a human activity, is a search for explanations of natural phenomena using naturalistic philosophy. Our program encourages students to further their understanding of the process of science and to become active participants in investigating and developing scientific explanations for our world.
Our courses emphasize the unifying concepts that undergird the structure of science and the evidence on which scientific views are based. Studying and understanding the implications of these concepts provide the foundation necessary to make informed decisions about the complex problems in our globalized modern world. Studying and applying unifying concepts allows students to approach the study of science with a sophisticated knowledge of its nature and methods and the kinds of problems it can address.
Our approach involves integration among the scientific disciplines, since modern societal and scientific challenges require knowledge of the interrelationships among scientific disciplines. This approach is vital for students, regardless of whether they plan to continue to study specific scientific disciplines or major in non-scientific disciplines. Our world is a scientific world and it is critical that every educated citizen be able to think critically and accurately about scientific information.
The mathematics program in the Division offers students the opportunity to fulfill the mathematics requirements of their majors while at the College of General Studies. This allows students access to the same high-quality, effective, student-oriented teaching found in the CGS core program while fulfilling their University mathematics requirements. Due to the diversity of the mathematical backgrounds of students and varied major program requirements, the courses are taught alongside, but are not part of, the core curriculum at CGS. However, since the faculty members teaching the mathematics courses have taught in the core program, are members of the College faculty, and know the core curriculum, they are able to offer some integration with the CGS core courses. The courses are directly equivalent to mathematics courses offered in the mathematics department at CAS. The courses fulfill all or part of the mathematics requirements in many major programs in Arts & Sciences, Management, Communication, and Hospitality Administration.