story David Chappell, Managing Editor, and Spandana Bhattacharya, Editor-in-Chief

The number of courses featured in the Yale-NUS College Common Curriculum is to be reduced to 10 courses following its inaugural review, according to President Pericles Lewis.

In an interview on Thursday Jan. 21, Mr. Lewis revealed that the science requirements for both science and non-science majors are to be trimmed and consolidated. The Current Issues component is also to be removed, with those previously enrolled being given the option to retroactively change their grade to an S/U by Feb. 5.

Instead of being divided into two classes, all second-year students will now take one common science course. Mr. Lewis said that a committee was being set up to optimize and “explore the sequence of what is now Scientific Inquiry, Quantitative Reasoning and Foundations Of Science.” He added that this optimization may involve changing both the names and sequencing of these courses.

Another major change is the internal appointment of a Director of the Common Curriculum. Mr. Lewis said that this individual will report to the Dean of Faculty and work with course facilitators to ensure that the courses are well co-ordinated.

A committee is also to be established to explore history within the Common Curriculum. Mr. Lewis said the committee would not just look at Historical Immersion but also the role of history components in other Common Curriculum modules. The format of Historical Immersion remains unchanged for now.

Mr. Lewis said that this new sequence would be adopted next year, but added that some of the courses “probably won’t change much from this year to next year.”

The recent changes are broadly in-line with those recommended by both the Common Curriculum External Review Panel and the Common Curriculum Self-Study Committee in their reports on Nov. 10 and 13 respectively.

Mr. Lewis said that the various reports indicated that the Common Curriculum is doing very well, added that the changes didn’t reflect any change in the desirability of the Common Curriculum – “just…balancing the right amount.”

The next major Common Curriculum review will take place in 2020.

The Octant team is still working on this story. Please check back later for updates. Last updated on Thursday, Nov. 21 16:55 pm.

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