By Rachel Lawson
The Master’s College is going to be rolling out a fresh set of General Education requirements; the college faculty voted to approve the new plan late last month.
Dr. John Stead, the school’s V.P. of Academic Affairs, and TMC’s board of advisors worked on the plan throughout the spring semester. The new requirements will apply to incoming freshmen beginning in fall of 2015.
“The school has not re-done the General-Ed requirements holistically or drastically in the last 15-20 years,” Stead said.
Stead said there are two main reasons for the change in the curriculum, one being that the current Gen-Ed requirements made it difficult for some majors to graduate in four years.
“As we’ve added professional programs, many of these majors have extensive amounts of units that put some of our students at a point where they have to take an extra semester to graduate,” Stead said.
As of now there are 71 General-Ed units required to graduate, along with the specific major requirements, which brings a minimum of 122 units to graduate. However, some majors exceed the 122 units requirement, and their students often find it difficult to meet.
“The General-Ed requirement will drop from 71 to 61 units, which will allow student’s in the professional majors, like Business, to complete their work easier in four years, and will give students in other majors the opportunity to take more electives,” Stead said.
The second reason for the change is that there is a need for the General-Ed to be more consistent across the board. Stead emphasized that the process involved getting the school’s professors to agree with what’s being taught, with each department deciding on the core objectives their students need to know.
“The General-Ed will be like a three-legged stool now, with our Bible set of classes, skills, and worldview or critical foundation,” he said.
The freshman Biblical Fundamentals class that is offered in the fall will be replaced with a class taught by Dr. Abner Chou, Dr. Tom Halstead and Dr. Greg Behle. The class will deal with canonicity, hermeneutics, and Bible inerrancy.
“What (college President) Dr. John MacArthur and the board see in the next 10 years is that the issue of inerrancy is going to become exceedingly important,” Stead said. “This new class will be crucial to build a foundation and knowledge in our students over this issue.”
Behle is also looking toward the future and is excited about the possibilities of this class, especially the crucial knowledge and application it will give students, not just the Bible majors enrolled in Bibliology.
“Dr. Chou, Dr. Halstead and I plan to sit down some time this summer and start to hash out what this class will look like,” Behle said.
Other specific changes that will happen are in the history department. U.S. History will be taught in one semester. World History will include more emphasis on world religions.