General Education Requirements

UH Hilo General Education Comprehensive Goals and Learning Outcomes

The General Education Requirements are designed to meet the following four common criteria as well as six goals and their respective learning objectives:


All courses that are certified as GE courses must:

  1. List course learning outcomes for students on the course syllabus.
  2. Meet all criteria (e.g., for Humanities, Language Arts, Natural Sciences) to which the course applies.
  3. Meet one or more learning outcomes from the Critical Thinking category of the UH Hilo GE Comprehensive Goals and Learning Outcomes.
  4. Include rigorous written (or quantitative, where appropriate) assignments that assess the student learning outcomes. The assignments should total at minimum the equivalent of five (5) double-spaced, typed pages, or 1,250 words.


1. Critical Thinking

A UH Hilo graduate should be able to:

  • Critique and interpret evidence (primary sources)
  • Identify relevant arguments
  • Analyze alternative assumptions
  • Identify ethical problems and dilemmas
  • Evaluate the validity of ethical arguments
  • Critically reflect on value assumptions

Critical Thinking is a core competency that is embedded in rubrics that are used to measure other skills. Please refer to the rubrics for Information Literacy, Written Communication, Oral Communication, and Quantitative and Scientific Reasoning below.

2. Information Literacy

A UH Hilo graduate should be able to:

  • Identify appropriate information required to address particular problems or issues
  • Access relevant information using appropriate resources
  • Evaluate different forms of data and sources
  • Analyze the economic, legal, and socio-political and other issues surrounding the use of information
  • Use computer technology to conduct research and find information

Information Literacy Assessment Rubric (PDF)

3. Communication

A UH Hilo graduate should be able to:

  • Articulate and pursue a line of reasoning using oral and written forms
  • Present ideas or results in a manner appropriate for college-level discourse (i.e. structure, tone, syntax, and grammar) in written form
  • Present ideas or results using collegiate-level conventions (i.e. documentation, genres, and forms of presentation)
  • Identify his/her audience and adapt accordingly

Written Communication Assessment Rubric (PDF)

Oral Communication Assessment Rubric (PDF)

4. Scientific and Quantitative Reasoning

A UH Hilo graduate should be able to:

  • Use systematic, empirical approaches to address questions as part of the scientific process
  • Differentiate scientific and non-scientific methods of inquiry
  • Conduct planned investigations including recording and analyzing data and reaching reasoned conclusions
  • Solve problems using mathematical methods and relevant technology
  • Represent theoretical models and data using graphs and tables

Quantitative and Scientific Reasoning Assessment Rubric (PDF)

5. Human Interaction and Cultural Diversity

A UH Hilo graduate should be able to:

  • Analyze multiple perspectives and articulate how perspectives based on world views differ from his/her own
  • Differentiate key values, assumptions, and beliefs among cultures
  • Explain how and why different racial, ethnic, religious, regional and gendered backgrounds shape experience
  • Explain or predict individual and collective human behavior

Cultural Diversity Assessment Rubric (PDF)

6. Collaborative Skills and Civic Participation

A UH Hilo graduate should be able to:

  • Formulate a rational project that contributes to the environmental, economic, social, or intellectual betterment of the local community or global forum
  • Articulate how his/her activity contributes to increased awareness of local or global issues on campus
  • Define what aspects of his/her group projects with peers contribute to the intellectual development of all involved.

Civic Responsibility Assessment (PDF) Assessment for Collaborative Skills and Civic Participation is incorporated into the Cultural Diversity Assessment Rubric.