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Lower-Division Course Descriptions

 
  • Area A: Communication in the English Language and Critical Thinking (9 units)

  • Area B: Physical Universe and Its Life Forms (10 units)

  • Area C: Arts, Literature, Philosophy, and Foreign Languages (9 units)

  • Area D: Social, Political, and Economic Institutions and Behavior (9 units)

  • Area E: Lifelong Understanding and Self (3 units)
  •   Course Requirements

    Area A: Communication in the English Language and Critical Thinking

    SPC 100
    Public Speaking (3 units)

    This course explains the theory and practice of oral communication. The course emphasizes organization, presentation, and evaluation of various types of speeches. Students express their own ideas and experience the diverse perspectives of classmates through exercises, discussions, and formal speeches. In addition, students engage in critical listening, audience analysis, and audience-focused presentations. Students also explore the ethical responsibilities of a public speaker.



    ENG 100
    English Composition and Reading (3 units)

    This course emphasizes reading-based academic writing in a multicultural milieu. Students critically respond to a variety of writers on various topics and themes. In addition, English 100 covers the rhetorical modes and culminates in an argumentative research paper.

    Prerequisites: English Placement Test, ENG 45, ENG 42LW, or score 13 on reading and writing math skill inventories



    ENG 201
    Critical Thinking, Reading, and Writing Across the Curriculum (3 units)

    This course explores the skills of critical reasoning, reading, and writing across the academic disciplines. Students examine and analyze the structure of formal and informal arguments and ways people use language to persuade. The course includes formal logic, critical essays, and research strategies.

    Prerequisites: ENG 100



    PHL 200
    Introduction to Logic (3 units)

    This course begins the study of formal and informal logical argumentation, including fallacies, and inductive and deductive reasoning. Students use concepts and methods for understanding and analyzing arguments, and learn how to evaluate factual claims and hidden or unstated assumptions. Logical methods are used to understand issues in race, class, and gender.

    Prerequisites: ENG 100



    Area B: Physical Universe and Its Life Forms

    CHE 130
    Chemistry (3 units)

    This course introduces the fundamentals of elementary chemistry and includes nature and characterization of matter, chemical changes, formulas, gas laws, concept of the mole, solution and ionic equilibrium reactions, atomic structure, and chemical bonding.

    Prerequisite: MAT 100



    CHE 150A
    General Chemistry for Scientists & Engineers I (5 units: 4 lecture units and 1 lab unit)

    This course is the first in the chemistry sequence for majors in biology, chemistry, engineering, or other physical sciences. This course covers fundamental chemical principles with emphasis on: atomic structure, bonding, periodicity, nomenclature, reactions, stoichiometry, thermochemistry, physical states of matter, molecular equilibrium, acid-base concepts, and oxidation reductions. A laboratory program complements lecture.

    Prerequisites: Proficiency in high school chemistry or CHE 130; proficiency in high school physics or PHY 120; proficiency in high school algebra, geometry, and trigonometry or MAT 100



    GEO 200
    Physical Geography (3 units)

    This class provides an introductory framework for understanding the geography of our atmospheric, geological, and biological environments.



    GSC 150
    Introductory Study of Planet Earth (3 units)

    This interdisciplinary study of the Earth has particular emphasis on the evolution and interactions of our planet’s physical systems. This course examines current knowledge of geology, hydrology, meteorology, oceanography, and astronomy; the mechanisms, techniques, and tools used in these fields; and the development of scientific ideas.



    PHY 120
    Physics (3 units)

    This course emphasizes classical mechanics, electricity and magnetism, quantum mechanics, relativity, and nuclear physics. The course traces the historical development and philosophical significance of scientific knowledge, and contrasts the methods of science with those of other disciplines. It assesses the role science and technology can play in solving some of society’s problems. The goal of the course is to provide students with tools for becoming scientifically literate.

    Prerequisites: MAT 100 or MAT 108



    PHY 150A
    General Physics I (Mechanics) (4 units: 3 lecture units and 1 lab unit)

    This course is the first in the physics sequence for majors in physics, chemistry, engineering, or other physical sciences. The general principles of mechanics are introduced at a calculus-based level. Specific topics include kinematics, Newton’s laws of motion, work and energy momentum, rotation, and simple harmonic motion. A problem solving approach is used emphasizing both conceptual understanding and basic mathematical techniques. A laboratory program complements lecture.

    Prerequisites: Proficiency in High School Physics or PHY 120; MAT 120 (may be taken concurrently) or equivalents



    BIO 101
    General Biology (3 units)

    This is an introductory level biology course that when combined with BIO 101L or another science lab unit fulfills the General Education life science requirements. Students are introduced to fundamental principles, methods, and concepts in the following areas: (1) molecular biology, cell biology, and human genetics; (2) DNA, evolution, and diversity of life on earth; (3) structure and function of the human body, and genetic engineering; and (4) ecology and environmental science. The course objective is to foster the ability to think critically and independently, regarding biological phenomena.



    BIO 102
    General Biology (4 units)

    Bio 102 explores the biological intricacies of life through investigative inquire. Students in this course work toward gaining such skills as they survey fundamental biological principles. They engage in discussions, application-based assignments, and hands-on lab work that emphasize basic biology, cell biology, metabolism, genetics, evolution, ecology, and diversity. Students also gain an introduction to the scientific method. Through this course, students have the opportunity to increase their fundamental understanding of biology as it applies to everyday life.



    BIO 101L
    General Biology Lab (1 unit)

    This is an introductory level biology lab course that when combined with BIO 101 fulfills the General Education life science requirements. Students are introduced to fundamental principles, methods, and concepts in the following areas: (1) molecular biology, cell biology, and human genetics; (2) DNA, evolution, and diversity of life on earth; (3) structure and function of the human body, and genetic engineering; and (4) ecology and environmental science. The course objective is to foster the ability to think critically and independently, regarding biological phenomena.



    GSC 150A
    Introductory Study of Planet Earth Lab (1 unit)

    This interdisciplinary lab supplements a general lecture course with hands-on science experiments and applications in astronomy, geology, meteorology, and oceanography.



    MAT 100
    College Algebra (3 units)

    This course is designed to prepare the student for courses requiring a solid algebraic background. The course content includes the study of fundamental algebraic concepts and contains the following topics: equations and inequalities, functions and graphs, polynomial functions, rational functions, systems of equations and inequalities, and exponential and logarithmic functions. Conic sections and sequences and series may also be included.

    Prerequisites: Math Placement Test or MAT 45



    MAT 102
    Explorations of Mathematics (3 units)

    This course will use discovery learning approaches to foster students' inductive, deductive, and logical reasoning skills while emphasizing the relevancy, utility, and beauty of mathematics in everyday life. Students investigate the connections between math and culture, music, art, architecture and nature. They also employ real-world mathematical applications to areas of probability, combinatorics, data analysis, consumer math, scheduling, critical paths, and networking trees.

    Prerequisites: None



    MAT 103
    Qualitative Reasoning (3 units)

    This course focuses on the application of quantitative reasoning to real word experiences. Students analyze the impact of quantitative reasoning and mathematics on the society and one's personal life. They learn to identify quantitative data from given situations, distinguishing essential information to form reasonable conclusions. Students also learn to identify and describe mathematical information and covert between written, numeric, graphical and symbolic modes in considering relationships. Multiple-step problems are solved using different modes of reasoning.

    Prerequisites: MAT 55W, MAT60LW or score 13 on math skills inventory
    Note: Required Math course for Business Administration students.



    MAT 108
    Number Systems (3 units)

    This course is designed for students preparing for a career in elementary school teaching. The course content includes the study of the real number system, numeration systems, elementary number theory, statistics, and problem-solving techniques required for elementary mathematical applications.

    Prerequisites: MAT 45 or Math Placement Test into MAT 100



    MAT 115
    Trigonometry and Analytic Geometry (3 units)

    This course in numerical and analytical trigonometry is designed to prepare the student for the level of trigonometry and advanced algebraic concepts necessary for calculus. Topics studied include trigonometry functions, trigonometric graphing, trigonometric identities, trigonometric equations and laws, vectors and complex numbers, conic sections, sequences and series, mathematical induction, and the binomial theorem.

    Prerequisites: Satisfactory score on Math Assessment Test, 2 years of high school algebra, 1 year of high school geometry; or MAT 100



    MAT 120
    Calculus and Analytic Geometry I (3 units)

    This is the first course in calculus and analytic geometry for students majoring in mathematics, physical science, computer science, or engineering. It includes functions and graphs, topics in analytic geometry, the analysis of algebraic and trigonometric functions, limits, derivatives, integrals, and applications.

    Prerequisites: Satisfactory score on Math Assessment Test, 2 years of high school algebra, 1 year of high school geometry, 1 year of high school trigonometry; or MAT 115



    Area C: Arts, Literature, Philosophy, and Foreign Languages

    ART 100
    Art Appreciation (3 units)

    This course is designed to provide an introduction to an understanding of the visual arts, including works of various media such as painting, sculpture, and decorative arts (ceramics, metal, textiles, furniture, etc.). Artwork will be viewed with attention to style, meaning, materials, and techniques used by individual artists within the milieu of history and society. Students will learn to recognize aesthetic qualities and to respond to them analytically.



    ART 101
    Introduction to Fine Arts (3 units)

    This course introduces students to various art forms and art criticism. Topics include the elements that comprise a work of art and the commonalities that exist across the arts disciplines. Throughout the course, students analyze works of art, artistic techniques, and reactions to art; explore relationships between art and the context in which it was created; and develop skills in critiquing art. Students attend a local art exhibition, performance, or presentation as part of a course project.



    EDU 120
    Dance and Music for Children (3 units)

    This course explores the role of dance music in society with an emphasis on classroom and workshop application and demonstration. The arts of dance and music will be experienced with attention to style, meaning, dance and music exercises, and techniques used in these forms of creative expression. Students can learn to recognize aesthetic qualities of dance and music and respond to them analytically. A special focus is dedicated to understanding children’s physical, emotional, and mental development and learning processes through dance and music.



    ENG 250
    Contemporary Multicultural Literature (3 units)

    This course focuses on the literatures of all peoples in American society since the beginning of the 20th Century. It emphasizes literature from African American, Asian American, Latino American, and Native American writers, covering the broad themes and deep concerns of those communities represented.

    Prerequisite: ENG 100



    PHL 100
    Introduction to Philosophy (3 units)

    This course provides students with an analytic study of the history of philosophy and some of its core areas, including metaphysics, epistemology, ethics, logic, and social/political philosophy. Through course readings and activities, students examine the diversity of cultures and genders that have shaped philosophical ideas throughout history. Students explore some of the major philosophical topics, such as the nature of reality, the existence of God, the soul, free will, the nature of knowledge, determinants of how we should live, and the nature of human beings.

    Prerequisite: ENG 100



    PHL 150
    Ethics (3 units)

    This course is an integrated and multicultural study of Moral philosophy that explores some of the major ethical theories and problems from past and present. Students focus on moral reflection, moral reasoning, and moral decision-making, with special emphasis on applying ethical theory to everyday situations.



    SPAN 100
    Elementary Spanish I (5 units)

    This course teaches the fundamentals of Spanish, including listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Emphasis is placed on classroom vocabulary and development of communication skills in cultural contexts.



    SPAN 101
    Elementary Spanish II (5 units)

    This course is a continuation of Spanish 101. Emphasis is placed on classroom vocabulary, grammar, and development of communication skills in cultural contexts.

    Prerequisites: SPAN 100 or permission of instructor



    SPAN 200
    Intermediate Spanish I (5 units)

    This intermediate Spanish course includes listening, speaking, reading, writing, and grammar. Emphasis is placed on cultural material, short stories, essays, and plays. The study of vocabulary and development of communication skills in cultural context are continued.

    Prerequisites: SPAN 101, permission of instructor, or passing score on Spanish placement test



    SPAN 201
    Intermediate Spanish II (5 units)

    This intermediate grammar and composition course emphasizes advanced elements of grammar, writing, and speaking skills.

    Prerequisites: SPAN 200, permission of instructor, or passing score on Spanish placement test



    SPAN 205
    Spanish for Native Speakers (5 units)

    This course is designed for native-speaker students who are fluent in spoken informal Spanish, but need grammatical and syntactical knowledge to improve written and oral communication. The goal is to improve students’ appreciation of the Hispanic cultures and knowledge of language acquisition. This course is not open to students of Spanish 201.

    Prerequisites: Placement test or permission of the instructor



    Area D: Social, Political, and Economic Institutions and Behavior

    ANT 100
    Introduction to Anthropology

    (3 units)

    Students will be provided with an overview of the discipline, which includes the study of the theory of evolution, the origins of mankind, early human cultures, and cultural systems in cross-cultural comparison. Students will gain an appreciation of what it has meant to be human in different places during different historical eras. Students will explore how humans adapt to, interpret, and affect the world in which they live.



    BUS 120
    Microeconomics

    (3 units)

    This course introduces the role of market systems as a means of solving the problems involved in the production and distribution of goods and services in a society. An analysis of the effectiveness of the price system in providing the society with an equitable distribution of goods, services, and income is featured. It explores microeconomics problems such as consumer and producer decisions through price adjustments under alternative market structures.



    BUS 121
    Macroeconomics

    (3 units)

    This course deals with the organization of the economics order with concentration on macroeconomics. It is a brief summary of the development of the study of economics with a description of the private enterprise system. A study of forces affecting the national economy, money and credit, income, employment, prices, and monetary and fiscal theories and policies are explored.



    CRJS 101
    Contemporary Criminal Justice Systems

    (3 units)

    This course surveys contemporary criminal justice systems in the United States with emphasis on the roles of law enforcement, courts, and corrections. Students analyze the components of and major players in the criminal justice system and apply what they learn to current events and dilemmas. Students will address the duplication of police services in the United States from the local, county, state, and the numerous federal law enforcement agencies and make recommendations to make the system more cost effective, efficient, and streamlined. The course applies learning to current events and problems in the criminal justice system and society.



    ETH 134
    Chicano/Latino Culture

    (3 units)

    This course is an historical overview of the Chicano/Latino community in the United States, focusing on race, class, and gender relations. Students analyze the educational, economic, socio-cultural, and political issues facing the US Chicano/Latino community.



    ETH 265
    Minorities in the United States

    (3 units)

    This course examines the historical traditions and cultural differences that exist among the major ethnic groups in the United States. Students learn important concepts and theories that are vital to the study of race and ethnicity. The course focuses on Native Americans, Latinos, African Americans, Asian Americans, and European Americans in the context of their acculturation, assimilation, and cultural amalgam in the United States, and critically analyzes inter-racial relations.



    GEO 200
    Physical Geography

    (3 units)

    This class provides an introductory framework for understanding the geography of our atmospheric, geological, and biological environments.



    HIS 100
    U.S. History I

    (3 units)

    This course is a survey of the political and social development of the United States through the Civil War. Multicultural and gender perspectives and issues are incorporated throughout.



    HIS 201
    U.S. History II

    (3 units)

    This course presents students with a survey of political and social development of the United States from Reconstruction to the present. Multicultural and gender perspectives and issues are incorporated throughout.




    PSY 205
    Social Psychology

    (3 units)

    This course focuses on the basic concepts and applications of social psychology, and includes such topics as attitudes, beliefs, and behavior; stereotyping, prejudice, and discrimination; interpersonal relationships; group behavior; and the effect of environmental stressors on behavior. Students apply principles learned to case studies and to situations in daily life.



    POL 101
    Introduction to American Government

    (3 units)

    In this course, students examine the structure, development, and dynamics of American political institutions and processes. Students explore major topics such as the US Constitution, federalism, the presidency, Congress, and the judiciary. The course includes a study of California state and local government, including the California Constitution.



    PSY 100
    Introduction to Psychology

    (3 units)

    Students examine a broad overview of the different fields of psychology, including biological psychology, sensation and perception, learning and memory, language, thought and intelligence, motivation and emotion, human development, personality, abnormal psychology and therapy, human sexuality, and social and applied psychology.



    SOC 101
    Introduction to Sociology

    (3 units)

    This course is an introduction to the field of sociology. Students learn fundamental concepts and the major approaches in the analysis of social behavior. The course addresses major topics such as race and ethnic relations, social class and mobility, role and status, and social institutions.



    SOC 102
    Multicultural Dimensions of Society

    (3 units)

    As globalism increasingly affects all facets of society, including school, work, and situations in everyday life, our country is growing increasingly diverse. This course provides students with a framework to understand, respect, and value diversity through real-life experiences and reflections. Students explore concepts of prejudice, cultural bias, discrimination, civil rights, diversity, pluralism, and conflict resolution among people with diverse life experiences. Through this course, students gain the knowledge and sensibilities to develop appropriate, flexible approaches for identifying and managing diversity issues.



    Area E: Lifelong Understanding and Self

    ANT 125
    Human Understanding and Development

    (3 units)

    This course examines the human cycle in its sociocultural, psychological, and biological contexts. It offers a cross-cultural perspective on the life cycle, and more generally, on what it means to be human.



    CD 100
    Child Growth and Development

    (3 units)

    This course focuses on the study of psychological growth and development from the prenatal stages to adolescence. It emphasizes the process through which children move forward physical, mental, social, and emotional maturity, and the roles that their culture and natural learning environments play in their continuing development. The impact of cultural/ethnic variations on the lives of children, families, and society are explored. Individual differences in learning are discussed from within a culturally sensitive framework.



    ECE 103
    Child Growth and Development

    (3 units)

    This course focuses on the study of growth and development from the prenatal stages to adolescence, addressing physical, cognitive, social, and emotional domains. The course emphasizes both the impact of cultural diversity on the lives of children and individual differences in the study of human development. This course requires some fieldwork.



    ECE 107
    Child Health, Safety, and Nutrition

    (3 units)

    Designed for students working with children both in the classroom and in the home setting, this course provides an overview of the philosophy, principles, cultural differences, and evaluation of health, safety, and nutrition in child-care settings. Students have the opportunity develop age-appropriate teaching strategies, with an emphasis on the importance of health, fitness, safety, and nutrition to the individual’s overall school performance as well as social, emotional, and physical well being.



    UNI 100
    First-Year Seminar

    (3 units)

    This course promotes student success by helping students develop the skills, behaviors, and attitudes conducive to the achievement of their educational, personal, and career goals. New students will engage intellectually, socially, emotionally, and physically in the college experience.