Welcome to Purdue's Undergraduate Outcomes-based Core Curriculum

The core curriculum is a set of common learning outcomes required of all undergraduate students. It acts as a mechanism by which all Purdue University students share a similar educational experience and, in doing so, achieve a set of common goals.

The core curriculum consists of two levels of learning outcomes: foundational and embedded.

All undergraduate students must meet the foundational learning outcomes, which are the same for all students, regardless of discipline or major. The courses students take to meet foundational learning outcomes provide a similar educational experience across programs and colleges and should be open to all undergraduate students.

Embedded learning outcomes are included in the core requirements of particular degrees or plans of study and are addressed within discipline-specific programs and majors.

Students must complete a minimum of 30 credit hours satisfying the specific foundational learning outcomes. There is no credit requirement for embedded learning outcomes, which will be assessed at the college/school level. Students may meet embedded outcomes by completing identified courses and/or target activities as determined by their program of study.

Why a Core Curriculum at Purdue University?

The central motivation behind the core curriculum is to better prepare all Purdue students for future employment success and responsible citizenship. Recent studies indicate employers are seeking employees with a broad set of skills beyond their discipline-specific abilities. A well-rounded, broad-based core curriculum will ensure this need is fulfilled.

Two additional factors support the implementation of a core curriculum: new accreditation requirements and recent legislative initiatives. The Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools recently updated accreditation mandates that require institutions maintain a minimum requirement for general education. Additionally, Indiana Senate Act 182 (2012) requires state educational institutions to create a statewide transfer general education core to be implemented by May 15, 2013. Purdue's core curriculum fulfills both of these requirements.

 Alignment of Indiana's Statewide Transfer General Education Core and Purdue's Core Curriculum

Student Benefits

Put simply, the core curriculum will better prepare all Purdue graduates for future employment success. Employers are looking for potential employees who possess a broader set of skills beyond their academic discipline. The core curriculum will better ensure this need is met.

Additionally, the core curriculum will give students more flexibility in changing academic paths.  Once a student fulfills a foundational learning outcome, the student receives credit for that outcome. If he or she CODOs to another program or college, all previously completed foundational outcomes will still be considered fulfilled.

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