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What is General Education?

Carnegie Mellon University follows a distinct approach to undergraduate education that combines professional training with a firm grounding in the liberal arts and sciences. Students who have a strong foundation in the liberal arts and sciences learn how to draw connections between disciplines and work effectively outside their focused area of study.

CMU-Q encourages students to explore different disciplines. general education courses cover a wide range of academic areas, including Arabic, chemistry, design, English, history, math and physics.

Research that falls under the purview of general education covers a variety of topics, including language pedagogy and education, graphic design, psychological effects of health conditions and mathematical modeling.

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Academic Areas

CMU-Q offers a wide range of general education courses for students to explore their interests and career options.

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Arabic studies

Although enhancing Arabic language skills is a main outcome of all Arabic studies courses, practicing analytical and critical thinking is another important element. The professional Arabic course prepares students for their future workplaces. Readings in historical texts provides students with knowledge about their history and how it extends to the present time. Literature courses enable students to learn about the past and present.

Chemistry

Chemistry introduces the relationships between the structure of molecules and their chemical properties and behavior. The subject matter includes principles of atomic structure, chemical bonding, intermolecular interactions and molecular structures of organic and inorganic compounds. Lab courses emphasize the techniques of quantitative chemical analysis.

English, writing and rhetoric

Courses in English, writing and rhetoric help develop verbal reasoning and precision in the use of English. Courses cover a wide range of topics to help students develop their skills in close reading, critical thinking, argumentation and written communication.

History

History teaches students to better understand our collective human autobiography, to draw connections between past events and current human concerns, and to think critically about how knowledge is created, interpreted and controlled. The focus areas of the study of history at CMU-Q include world history, Islamic identity, nationalism, and environmental history.

Information literacy and research skills

Students who study information literacy and research skills learn to find and select their own reading materials and resources, and to critically evaluate all sorts of information sources for bias. They learn to effectively navigate and manipulate information systems like library catalogs, social media, Google, and research databases, and to take control of these resources rather than being controlled by them.

Mathematics

Mathematics lays the foundation for computational and computer science and provides much of the language and quantitative underpinnings of the natural and social sciences, as well as the development of the most commonly used tools in business management. Mathematics courses at Carnegie Mellon Qatar include calculus, integration and approximation, matrices and linear transformations, multivariate analysis, basic logic, algebraic structures, combinatorics, models and methods for optimization, and graph theory.

Philosophy

At Carnegie Mellon, our vision of philosophy is interdisciplinary, rigorous, applied and relevant. Philosophy courses at the Qatar campus focus primarily on the study of ethics, both as a theoretical field and in its application to areas such as leadership, conflict resolution, human rights, business, and biomedical research.

Physics

Courses include physics for biological sciences students, general physics for all disciplines and an introduction to astronomy.

Psychology

Courses include Introduction to Psychology, Social, Cognitive, Health and Sleep Psychology, as well as Face Perception, Research Methods (Social or Cognitive concentration), and Cognitive Neuropsychology. 

Spanish

Spanish courses emphasize the development of communicative language proficiency and cultural competence through the four language skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing. Students also learn appropriate grammar structures, vocabulary, and discourse strategies that are necessary for communication.

As an elective, learning Spanish broadens the students’ undergraduate academic experience. It allows students to experience language and culture learning in a dynamic environment which deepens their creative and critical thinking.

Statistics

In statistics courses students learn how to collect, analyze, and interpret data, as well as how to present their results. Students learn sampling techniques, various descriptive statistics, exploring probability and probability distributions. 

 

Meet the Faculty

Faculty members in general education are dedicated to teaching undergraduates the liberal arts and sciences

Ravichandra Bachu

Ravichandra Bachu

Assistant Teaching Professor of Chemistry

Crista Crittenden

Crista Crittenden

Assistant Teaching Professor, Psychology

Hasan Demirkoparan

Hasan Demirkoparan

Associate Teaching Professor, Mathematics

David Gray

David Gray

Assistant Teaching Professor, Philosophy

Susan Hagan

Susan Hagan

Associate Teaching Professor, English

Erik Helin

Erik Helin

Special Lecturer, Spanish

Amal Helu

Amal Helu

Visiting Associate Professor, Statistics

Adam Hodges

Adam Hodges

Visiting Assistant Professor, English

Ludmila Hyman

Ludmila Hyman

Assistant Teaching Professor, English

Zeinab Ibrahim

Zeinab Ibrahim

Teaching Professor, Arabic Studies

Lansiné Kaba

Lansiné Kaba

Thomas M. Kerr Distinguished Career Professor

Nikolaos Kalogeropoulos

Nikolaos Kalogeropoulos

Visiting Associate Professor, Physics

Niraj Khare

Niraj Khare

Assistant Teaching Professor, Mathematics

Ramesh Krishnamurti

Ramesh Krishnamurti

Professor, Architecture

Teresa MacGregor

Teresa MacGregor

Director, Library

Thomas Mitchell

Thomas Mitchell

Assistant Teaching Professor, English

Joyce Oates

Joyce Oates

Assistant Teaching Professor, Psychology

Marion Oliver

Marion Oliver

Teaching Professor, Mathematics

Silvia Pessoa

Silvia Pessoa

Associate Teaching Professor, English

Benjamin Reilly

Benjamin Reilly

Associate Teaching Professor, History

Dudley Reynolds

Dudley Reynolds

Teaching Professor, English

Alicia Salaz

Alicia Salaz

Reference and Instruction Librarian

Zelealem Yilma

Zelealem Yilma

Assistant Teaching Professor, Mathematics