All City Tech students, regardless of major, are required to enroll in General Education (Gen Ed) courses. These requirements are established by CUNY, and apply to all students at any CUNY campus.

Students sometimes question Gen Ed requirements, wondering why they have to take classes in areas that seem unrelated to their majors. There are two answers to this question. The first is that while your City Tech degree will prepare you for success in your career, college has always been considered more than job training. Gen Ed classes, grounded in the rich tradition of the liberal arts and sciences, can give you a deeper and broader understanding of the world around you, and help prepare you to participate in society, contribute to your community, and live life more fully.

The second answer is deeply practical: The skills that Gen Ed classes aim to develop are fundamental to the learning that will take place in classes in your major, and are essential to success in the workplace. According to research compiled by the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE), the top skills that employers say they are looking for in new employees are exactly the skills that your Gen Ed classes help you develop. These skills include leadership and ability to work in a team (like those group projects that many of your classes require, and your participation in study groups), written and verbal communication, problem solving, critical thinking, and mathematical reasoning. These are the skills that will allow you to adapt and learn as technologies and workplaces change.

We urge you to think of your Gen Ed requirements as an opportunity to acquire valuable skills and knowledge that will benefit you in college and beyond.

City Tech General Education Requirements

City Tech’s General Education Common Core enables students to meet CUNY’s Pathways requirements while also fulfilling the degree requirements of their programs. Gen Ed requirements include specific classes, categories of classes, and overall requirements. For more detailed information about any of these requirements, especially if you are a transfer student, consult General Education at City Tech.

Overall Requirements

  • Total credits for a degree: At least 60 for an Associate degree and at least 120 for a Bachelor’s degree, although a program may require more if there are licensing or accreditation requirements.
  • Liberal arts (LA) credits: The liberal arts and sciences include the disciplines of the humanities, natural sciences and mathematics, and social sciences. The number of required liberal arts credits for your specific degree is listed on the Degree Requirements page and viewable at the top of your degree audit in DegreeWorks.
  • Advanced liberal arts (ALA) requirement: In meeting general education requirements overall, students must take at least one advanced liberal arts course or two sequential courses in a foreign language. An advanced liberal arts course is at the 2000 level or higher and has a prerequisite in the same or a closely related discipline. Examples of advanced liberal arts courses include ECON 2505 (Prerequisite: ECON 1101 or ECON 1401), SOC 3301 (prerequisite: ECON 1101), and SOC 2403 (prerequisite: PSY 1101).
  • Writing Intensive (WI): Students must complete two courses designated Writing Intensive (WI) for an Associate degree, one from general education and one from the major; and two additional WI courses for a Bachelor’s degree, one from general education and one from the major. You can see at the top of your degree audit in DegreeWorks how many you have taken and how many you have to go. WI is specific to the section, and all qualifying sections are listed by semester here.

Required Common Core

These are specific courses (3-4 courses) that are required for all CUNY students in Associate and Bachelor’s degree programs:

Flexible Common Core

These are categories of courses that you are required to choose from. Bachelor’s degrees and AA and AS degrees require six Flexible Core courses–at least one course in each of the five Flexible Core areas and an additional sixth course in one of them. AAS degrees may require fewer Flexible Core courses. Some degree programs specify what courses must be taken in each category. See your Program Requirements in the catalog for more information on how these categories apply to your degree.

College Option Requirements

All Bachelor’s degree students starting at City Tech or transferring in with 30 or fewer credits must also complete the following 4 courses:

  • One course in speech/oral communication (COM 1330 or higher)
  • One interdisciplinary (ID) course or seminar
  • Two additional liberal arts courses from outside the major.


Pathways, a CUNY-wide initiative, was established to provide uniform General Education requirements throughout the CUNY campuses. This makes it easier to transfer to another college within the CUNY system, because once you have fulfilled a Common Core requirement at one CUNY college, that requirement will be fulfilled at any other CUNY college. The same applies to College Option credits. Pathways has also aligned Gateway Courses for a number of popular majors.




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The Companion for the First Year at City Tech Copyright © by Office of First Year Programs is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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