Old Dominion University
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General Education Implementation

Implementation Info


9. The Nature of Science (Way of Knowing) (8 hours) 

The justification for Ways of Knowing is the need for our students to become more broadly educated because our students will enter a world in which they will hold several different jobs, and perhaps even embark on a succession of careers during their lives. Equally important is the consideration that this education will make their lives richer and their outlook broader even in the unlikely event that demands on their expertise do not change. All of the Ways of Knowing are required to consider the ways in which gender, age, poverty, ethnicity and globalization fashion and influence our lives.

These will be lecture courses with a laboratory component that concentrate on understanding science both as a process and as a body of knowledge. Unless mandated by the major, there will no longer be a sequencing requirement. Students can meet this requirement by completing introductory science courses in more than one discipline.


  • Students will demonstrate their comprehension of a body of scientific knowledge.
  • Students will develop the ability to apply concepts to new situations, solve problems and interpret evidence that is presented in various formats, such as verbally, numerically and graphically as appropriate to the content of the course.
  • Students will be able to describe the domain and methods of scientific thinking, and be able to distinguish between questions that can and cannot be answered scientifically.
  • Students will describe the role of experiment and observation in the development of scientific theory and knowledge.