Why do we need to take courses that are outside of our fields?

The New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC), which accredits colleges to grant undergraduate degrees, requires that "one-third of all of your course work must be in general education." This is true for any college granting bachelors' level degrees. In the development of the PLAN, faculty sought to design such requirements to allow you to integrate general education into your chosen majors, minors, and fields of study. Credit structures and relationships to courses of study are detailed below.

What about credit-heavy programs, for example: pre-health, 3+1 programs, Nursing?

The PLAN was designed to work with all courses of study. Faculty from across the departments and schools were integral to the development of PLAN requirements. The PLAN facilitates students fulfilling general education requirements in intensive, credit-heavy courses of study.

Will I be able to complete my major(s), minor(s), course of study?

Yes. The PLAN was designed to facilitate students’ pursuit of the fields of study, including more than one major. After the first year courses, PLAN courses may be counted within majors, minors, and courses of study. See “The PLAN Requirements” table for details.

Can PLAN courses transfer to other colleges?

Yes. As with all Simmons University courses, PLAN credits are transferable based on the policies of the receiving college as part of Simmons's national accreditation through New England Association of Schools and Colleges. The Registrar’s Staff has coded PLAN courses for easy legibility for other colleges. The guidelines and standards followed by accredited institution allow for straightforward acceptance of courses for transfer credit.

How was the PLAN designed?

Beginning in 2014, the Simmons University faculty undertook the process of revising our general education curriculum. According to the Faculty Policy Manual (the contract outlining the roles and responsibilities of faculty at Simmons), the faculty is responsible for any and all components of the curriculum, including general education. The faculty had been working in earnest to revise the general education program at Simmons since 2011 – in 2014; we received administrative support to do so.