Academic Operational Policies

Subject: Non-core/Breadth Curriculum Number:  AOP 241
Issued by: Vice-President Academic Date Issued:  August 2020
Supersedes: N/A Page:  1 of 1

Post-Secondary Registration and Graduation – AOP 225

Evaluation of Student Performance – AOP 224

PLAR, Transfer Credit, Advanced Standing, Articulation Agreements and Exemptions – AOP 221


Non-core/Breadth Curriculum

1. Introduction and Purpose 

Curriculum at Loyalist College is central to the function of meeting community, employer, government and student needs. The design, development, and delivery of non-core (degree breadth) courses at the College considers its strategic plan, workforce needs, program content, currency and sustainability, and Ministerial, regulatory and accrediting body requirements. 

The purpose of this policy to provide students enrolled in degree programs with information about their program requirements.

2. Application

This policy includes all Loyalist College students enrolled in degree programs and applies to degree breadth requirements. This policy does not apply to professional option courses.

3. Definitions

Non-core (degree breadth) course – A degree-level course designed to enhance essential skills, including critical thinking, quantitative and qualitative reasoning, and communication, and provides knowledge of society and culture, and skills relevant to civic engagement. Non-core courses expand and deepen knowledge and understanding of areas in Humanities, Sciences, Social Sciences, Global Cultures (including Indigenous Cultures) and/or Mathematics.

Non-core elective course – A non-core course that is freely chosen by students enrolled in degree programs and is available to students from a variety of programs.

Non-core prescribed course – A non-core course that all students in a degree program must complete.

Lower-level non-core course – A non-core course that introduces students in degree programs to key concepts and theories in Humanities, Sciences, Social Sciences, Global Cultures (including Indigenous Cultures) and/or Mathematics, establishing foundational survey knowledge and analysis.

Professional option course – An elective course of interest that is directly linked to a student’s program. These are not non-core courses and they do not satisfy the non-core requirements for a degree program.

Upper-level non-core course – A non-core course that requires the application of foundational knowledge to evaluate critically the complexities of specific discipline areas and theoretical frameworks to a greater degree.

4. Policy Statement

Non-core courses are degree breadth courses and complement professional courses in degree programs. Non-core requirements contribute to students’ knowledge of society and culture, skills relevant to civic engagement, and strengthen critical thinking, quantitative reasoning, and written and oral communication skills. This policy aligns with the Postsecondary Education Quality Assessment Board’s Manual for Ontario Colleges.

4.1 Classification

Every non-core course at Loyalist College is classified as either lower- or upper-level and falls into one of the following five (5) categories:

  • Humanities
  • Sciences
  • Social Sciences
  • Global Cultures (including Indigenous Cultures)
  • Mathematics

4.2 Requirements

Students in degree programs must meet the following non-core requirements:

  • Successful completion of non-core courses in at least two (2) of the five (5) categories (Humanities, Sciences, Social Sciences, Global Cultures and/or Mathematics).
  • Successful completion of at least two (2) upper-level non-core courses.
    • Successful completion of at least one (1) lower-level, or English or critical thinking course is required before enrolling in an upper-level non-core course.

Note: Professional option courses are not equivalent to non-core courses.

5. References

Postsecondary Education Quality Assessment Board Manual for Ontario Colleges