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FAQ for Students Who Began Before Fall 2021

How is Bridges different from the University Core?

The former general education curriculum, the University Core, was organized around required courses in specific subjects and four Theme Areas. Bridges includes some common courses but is largely organized around competencies-particular skills and forms of reasoning. Bridges is designed to provide students in most programs with greater flexibility when choosing courses to meet their general education requirements.

Why is Bridges better than the University Core?

  • Expands student choice
  • Streamlined
  • Transfer friendly
  • Friendly to secondary majors and minors, which is good for students and for programs
  • Aligned with in-demand skills employers want
  • Includes multiple opportunities for experiential learning

I've taken courses for the University Core. Will those count for Bridges?

Yes. Prior coursework counts toward Bridges requirements. You can consult the Traditional Map for Current Students, search for approved courses in the Course Catalog, and run a RAPP (Review Academic Program Progress) in Self Service Banner to see what Bridges credit you have.  

I began at Duquesne before Fall 2021. Do I have to do everything that is listed in the Bridges Curricular Overview?

No. Students who began before Fall 2021 do not have to take the Essential Questions course or BRDG 105. Students who entered Duquesne in Fall 2020 will complete the Experiential Learning and Capstone elements. Students who entered prior to Fall 2020 are not required to do those, though students in most programs will have these features integrated into their majors anyway.

When I came to Duquesne I had credits that couldn't be used toward my major or the University Core. Can they be used for Bridges?

Most likely.  Bridges is friendlier to transfer credits. Please ask your Student Success Coach to review transfer credits if you think you might benefit from Bridges in this way, and remember that your school's current curriculum requirements will factor into the application of transfer credits.

How can I be sure I know what Bridges requirements I need to meet before graduation?

  We mapped Bridges into all of our undergraduate baccalaureate programs. Please consult your Student Success Coach.

Can courses count for more than one Bridges competency?

Yes! There are six competencies. You need to take a total of seven competency courses and touch each of the 6 competencies at least once. Take courses which count for more than one competency means you can invest however many of your 7 courses are left to try to pursue a minor, certificate, or explore competency courses that look interesting to you. In some programs the degree requirements are so numerous and so carefully sequenced that you may have less flexibility than students in other programs, but students in many programs have flexibility in Bridges.

How do I know which courses are approved for which Bridges competencies?

You can search the Course Catalog by Bridges attributes.  It is best to consult with your Student Success Coach about which courses are recommended for your major if you are an Honors College student, studying abroad, or are contemplating transferring to another major.