Aug 222012
 

Due to Dartmouth’s aspiration for a liberal arts education, the college requires all students to complete a set of distributive requirements before graduation. These requirements do not hinder students from taking the courses they want or force students to take a specific class they may not be interested in, but instead, the “distribs” (as students call them) allow students to branch out and encourage them to reach out of their comfort zone. The list of requirements that Dartmouth currently has is as follows: one Art; one Literature; one Systems of Thought, Meaning and Value; one International or comparative study; two Social analysis; one Quantitative or deductive science; two Natural or Physical sciences; and one Technology or applies science. In addition, students must take one laboratory class. The other side of the requirements is in terms of World Culture and requires one course in each of the following: Western culture, Non-western culture, and Culture and Identity. While this may seem like so many classes, many classes can fulfill both a subject and a culture distribution and many requirements can be fulfilled in surprising ways. For example, a music class can fulfill your technology requirement and nobody has to know how to draw or paint to get credit for the art distribution. Some of my favorite classes so far at Dartmouth have been classes I have selected to use to fulfill a distribution or just based on interest. Examples include Astronomy, Religion, Statistics, Multiracial Youth Development, Perception, Argentine Literature and more! As a Psychology major, the majority of my classes will end up in that department, but thanks to the distributive requirements I have been fortunate to get a taste of many other areas of study and learn bits and pieces of a variety of subjects.

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