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UH Mānoa’s General Education program is, along with your chosen fields of study, the heart of the university’s undergraduate academic experience. Through your Gen Ed coursework, you get to take classes in fields you may have never heard of, or that cover topics you are excited to explore. You will take multiple classes in which you will progressively develop skills that will help you in all of your coursework, careers, and life after graduation.

You can discover different cultures, points-of-view, and disciplinary approaches to complex issues facing the world today. Through coursework in, for example, sustainability science or colonial history, students learn to ask compelling questions, think creatively and critically, and use the tools of research to propose solutions to complex problems. In the process of gaining a deeper understanding of our ʻĀina and its indigenous peoples, you become an engaged citizen of your community, our island home, and our world.

Much more than a set of requirements to be checked off on your path to graduation, your Gen Ed coursework provides opportunities for transformative intellectual and personal growth, and lays the foundation for lifetime learning. Alongside your major (or majors), these habits of minds are at the heart of what it means to be a Mānoa graduate. Read more about the mission, vision, and values of the Gen Ed curriculum on the home page.

So what are you waiting for? Make the most of your Gen Ed experience by contacting your advisor!

 Core Requirements



  • Arts, Humanities, and Literatures (6 credits from 2 categories)
    – Arts (DA*)
    – Humanities (DH*)
    – Literatures (DL*)
  • Social Sciences (DS*; a total of 6 credits from 2 different departments)
  • Natural Sciences
    –Biological Science (DB*; 3 credits)
    –Physical Science (DP*; 3 credits)
    –Laboratory (science) (DY*; 1 credit )

 Special Graduation Requirements



HSL*; competence at the 202 level

  • Some colleges/schools have waived or modified this requirement. Consult your college/school advisor.

* These abbreviations appear after course descriptions to identify courses that meet specific requirements. See the Catalog to view course descriptions.

** The STAR Degree Check indicates Focus classes by  “E,” “H,” “O,” and “W.” Class Availability  indicates Focus sections with “ETH,” “HAP,” “OC,” and “WI.”

Make Gen Ed work for you!

Articulation and Transfer

Courses taken satisfactorily at other institutions may count toward your Gen Ed requirements


Past work/experiences may qualify you to satisfy or be exempt from some Gen Ed requirements


Advisors are available to ensure you meet your requirements in the most fulfilling ways

Transfer Students

Transfer students should contact an advisor as soon as possible. An advisor can often help a transfer student make choices that will help the student make steady progress toward graduation. Students with a major should contact an advisor from the college/school in which the major is located; students who have not yet chosen a major should contact the Mānoa Advising Center. Students needing assistance in the transfer process should contact the UH Mānoa Transfer Coordination Center. See for contact information for all advising offices.
Many requirements, including General Education Foundations, Diversification, and Hawaiian or Second Language requirements, may be met by transferring articulated courses from other campuses. Students can check the UH Transfer Credit Database at

Gen Ed helps you meet our Institutional Learning Objectives

Student FAQs

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