May 27, 2024  
2020-2021 Cal State East Bay Catalog 
2020-2021 Cal State East Bay Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Other Breadth Requirements

Beyond the CSU requirements for GE, Cal State East Bay requires baccalaureate students to take a Second Composition course, courses in three Overlay areas, and courses to satisfy the American Institutions (“Code”) requirement.  These requirements are described below.

Second Composition     

Students must complete the Second Composition requirement by the time they reach “junior” standing.  Before taking the Second Composition course, students must pass a course satisfying GE Subarea A2 with a grade of “C-” or above or “CR.”  Second Composition courses may also be GE certified.  Transfer students who did not satisfy this requirement at their previous college must take Second Composition during their first semester at Cal State East Bay.  Some California community colleges refer to this as the “A4” requirement.  The student learning outcomes for all Second Composition courses are described below.

Upon the successful completion of the Second Composition course, students will be able to:

  1. complete a variety reading and writing tasks that incorporate subject-matter knowledge;
  2. adjust their writing for different audiences, showing awareness of expectations for academic writing in general and adhering to discipline-specific conventions when appropriate;
  3. demonstrate critical thinking and logical reasoning, including strategies common in a discipline, in the development and organization of ideas in written texts;
  4. take into account multiple perspectives and key disciplinary concepts when presenting their ideas in writing;  and
  5. revise their writing in response to feedback in order to improve development, clarity, coherence, and correctness.

Courses approved for Second Composition are listed here: Second Composition Courses  

Overlay Requirements

An “Overlay” is a graduation requirement that is fulfilled by completing an approved course.  This requirement “lays over” the GE and major programs, because an Overlay course may be lower division or upper division and may also satisfy a GE or major requirement.  Thus, the student should not need to take additional courses to meet the Overlay requirements.  Please consult with your academic advisor to plan your coursework for your Overlay requirements. 

A minimum of 9 semester units of coursework is required in courses that are linked to three of the University’s Institutional Learning Outcomes (see the Cal State East Bay at a Glance  chapter):  Diversity Overlay, Social Justice Overlay, and Sustainability Overlay. The student learning outcomes for the three Overlay requirements are below.

Diversity Overlay     

After completion of a course designated as fulfilling the Diversity Overlay requirement, students will be able to:

  1. describe the histories and/or experiences of one or more U. S. cultural groups and the resilience and agency of group members;
  2. identify structures of oppression and the diverse efforts and strategies used by groups to combat the effects of oppressive structures;
  3. analyze the intersection of the categories of race and gender as they affect cultural group members’ lived realities and/or as they are embodied in personal and collective identities;
  4. recognize the way that multiple differences (including, for example, gender, class, sexuality, religion, disability, immigration status, gender expression, color/phenotype, racial mixture, linguistic expression, and/or age) within cultural groups complicate individual and group identities.

“Cultural group(s)” refers to historically oppressed groups in the United States, such as African Americans, Asian Americans, Pacific Islanders, Latinx, American Indians, Arab Americans, women, and GLBTQ (gays, lesbians, bisexuals, transgender, and queer identified people).

Students who satisfied the “Cultural Groups and Women’s Requirement” prior to Fall Semester, 2018 are considered to have satisfied this requirement.

Courses approved for the Diversity Overlay are listed here: Diversity Overlay Courses  

Social Justice Overlay     

After completion of a course designated as fulfilling the Social Justice Overlay requirement, students will be able to:

  1. use a disciplinary perspective to analyze issues of social justice and equity;
  2. describe the challenges to achieving social justice; and
  3. identify ways in which individuals and/or groups can contribute to social justice within local communities, nations, or the world.

Courses approved for Social Justice Overlay are listed here: Social Justice Overlay  

Sustainability Overlay     

After completion of a course designated as fulfilling the Sustainability Overlay requirement, students will be able to:

  1. identify the environmental, social, and economic dimensions of sustainability, either in general or in relation to a specific problem;
  2. analyze interactions between human activities and natural systems;
  3. describe key threats to environmental sustainability; and
  4. explain how individual and societal choices affect prospects for sustainability at the local, regional, and/or global levels.

Courses approved for Sustainability Overlay are listed here: Sustainability Overlay Courses  

American Institutions Requirement (U.S. Code)    

CSU graduates are expected to have knowledge of: significant events in U.S. history; the role of major ethnic and social groups in these events; the political, economic, social, and geographic context of these events; the U.S. Constitution, U.S. political institutions and processes; the rights and obligations of U.S. citizens; the California Constitution; federal-state relations; and California state and local government, and political processes.  

Competence in these areas may be demonstrated through coursework or exams by:

(a) passing the CLEP exam in American Government or American History I: Early Colonization to 1877 and the California State and Local Government Exam administered by the Testing Office, or

(b) passing two courses (6 semester units) which cover all three US Code (US-1 American History, US-2 U.S. Constitution, and US-3 California State and Local Government) areas.  

Students receiving credit for any US Code courses through a national test such as Advanced Placement, CLEP, or at an out-of-state institution will not receive credit for US-3 California State and Local Government.  The Department of History or Political Science should be contacted for further information.  Students who have completed part of the Code requirement at a California Community College should also consult the corresponding departments to avoid duplicating coursework.  

        Courses approved for U.S. Code areas are listed here: U.S. Code    


Additional details of these and other graduation requirements are provided in the Requirements, Exams & Testing  chapter of the catalog.