University of Montana Catalog 2023-2024

General Studies Certificate

In accordance with the mission of the University of Montana-Missoula, the objectives of general education coursework are to develop competent and humane individuals who are informed, ethical, literate, and engaged citizens of local and global communities. Students should become acquainted with issues facing contemporary society, participate in the creative arts, develop an understanding of science and technology, cultivate an appreciation of the humanities, and examine the history of different American and global cultures. Upon completion of the general education requirements students should be able to articulate ideas orally and in writing, understand and critically evaluate tangible and abstract concepts, and employ mathematical and other related skills appropriate to a technologically focused society.   These foundational skills are important for students continuing on in both liberal arts and professional programs of study.

The Certificate of General Studies requires completion of University of Montana’s lower-division general education requirements that reflect the Montana University System’s General Education Core.  Students may use the certificate to demonstrate completion of lower-division general education requirements when transferring within the MUS or as a milestone to earning an Associate of Arts or Associate of Science degree a Missoula College, University of Montana. 

To receive the Certificate of General Studies, students must:

  • Complete UM’s lower-division General Education Requirements (GERs) that also fulfill the general education requirements outlined by the Montana University System (the MUS Core), excluding the Group III requirements.
  • Earn a minimum of 30 credits, and
  • Have a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0.
  • At least 16 of the total 30 degree credits must be earned from Missoula College or UM-Missoula.

Certificate of Applied Science - General Studies


Writing Skills6
Introductory Writing Course
Intermediate Writing Course
Expressive Arts
Historical & Cultural Studies
Literary & Artistic Studies
Social Sciences
Ethical & Human Values
Democracy and Citizenship
Cultural and International Diversity
Natural Sciences
Total Hours30-37


Degree Specific Credits: 30-37

Required Cumulative GPA: 2.0


  • Missoula College students are limited to enrolling in lower-division coursework (course level 100 or 200). 
  • All courses taken to satisfy General Education Requirements must be taken for a traditional letter grade and must be passed with a grade of C- or better.
  • Students graduating with an Associate of Arts Degree or an Associate of Science Degree have been granted an exception to the Group III requirements. Missoula College students who continue to Mountain Campus without graduating with either of these degrees will need to complete the Group III requirement unless their declared four-year major has been granted an exception.

Writing Skills

Rule: Complete the following subcategories. 6 total credits required. 

Note: NOTE: Students who place into and successfully complete WRIT 201 are considered to have satisfied both the WRIT 101 and the Lower-Division Approved Writing Course General Education Requirements.

Introductory Writing Course

Note: Appropriate placement into WRIT 101/WRIT 201 required. Prerequisites may apply.

Complete one of the following courses:
WRIT 101College Writing I3
or WRIT 201 College Writing II

Minimum Required Grade: C-

Intermediate Writing Course

Complete any course designated as an Intermediate Writing Course during semester it's taken.3

Minimum Required Grade: C-


Note: Appropriate placement into mathematics courses required. 

Complete any Mathematics course level 104 or higher (excluding M 111).3-4

Minimum Required Grade: C-


Rule: A minimum of 3 credits towards each perspective category is required. 21-27 total credits required.

Note: Some courses satisfy multiple Perspectives or GER Categories; visit with your advisor for more information. Students who take the maximum number of Perspective "double-dippers" possible will be able to complete the Perspectives with a total of 21 credits.

Expressive Arts (A)

Complete a minimum 3 credits in any course with the Expressive Arts (A) designation. 3

Minimum Required Grade: C-

Literary & Artistic Studies (L)

Complete a minimum 3 credits in any course with the Literary & Artistic Studies (L) designation. 3

Minimum Required Grade: C-

Historical & Cultural Studies (H)

Complete a minimum 3 credits in any course with the Historical & Cultural Studies (H) designation. 3

Minimum Required Grade: C-

Social Sciences (S)

Complete a minimum 3 credits in any course with the Social Sciences (S) designation. 3

Minimum Required Grade: C-

Ethical & Human Values (E)

Complete a minimum 3 credits in any course with the Ethical & Human Values (E) designation. 3

Minimum Required Grade: C-

Democracy and Citizenship (Y)

Complete a minimum 3 credits in any course with the Democracy and Citizenship (Y) designation. 3

Minimum Required Grade: C-

Cultural and International Diversity (X)

Complete a minimum 3 credits in any course with the Cultural and International Diversity (X) designation. 3

Minimum Required Grade: C-

Natural Sciences (N)

Complete a minimum 6 credits in any course with the Natural Sciences (N) designation. At least one course must have a laboratory component.6

Minimum Required Grade: C-