USC Core and General Education

The USC Core

Please note: USC has revised its General Education requirements for students starting college in fall 2015 or after. Please check back later this summer for more details, as we will be updating this site and our publications. In the meantime, please refer to the Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences page for more information. If you have immediate questions or concerns, you can contact your Admission Counselor through our Find Your USC Admission Counselor page.

Students who enrolled in college full-time prior to fall 2015 (not including summer semesters) can use these tools to guide their course selection.

USC’s Core curriculum consists of courses in General Education, Writing, Foreign Language and Diversity. The curriculum is designed to enhance your ability to weigh competing theories, evaluate new evidence and articulate an informed point of view. Structured to encourage you to explore diverse areas of study, the Core allows you sufficient time to add a minor or second major to your degree program.

We strongly advise you to begin coursework in the Core courses before transferring to USC. Seventy-five (75) percent of your transferable courses should satisfy General Education or other Core courses, or subject prerequisites for your intended major. We do not, however, expect you to complete all General Education courses at your current institution, as we encourage transfer students to take advantage of our General Education program.

General Education

All USC undergraduate students must complete six categories of General Education courses to graduate, plus the Writing, Foreign Language and Diversity requirements. Four of the six General Education categories may be completed prior to transferring to USC. See the Transfer Planning Worksheet for detailed descriptions of these categories.