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Core Competencies

Core competencies are a required, noncredit, general education component of each degree program. It is a graduation requirement for all students enrolling in a BCC degree program whohave not earned 15 degree credits as of September 1, 2004.

(All Items must be graded "C" or better.)

Students must complete assignments that are certified by faculty as demonstrating core competencies that faculty have identified as central to learning

Students will be completing assignments in general education, elective courses, and courses in all programs of study that will give them practice with these competencies in the context of different subjects.

Learning to use competencies across the curriculum will help students:

(1) Apply similar skills and abilities to learn different course contents; and

(2) Integrate their education rather than thinking of it as a collection of      separate, unrelated courses.

To satisfy this requirement, a student must demonstrate the competency in the following areas:

*Click on link for a description of each competency.* 

Group 1 - Pan-Disciplinary

(All four of the following are required):

*This competency, entailing the use of sources, must be satisfied by a sample work from other than composition courses.

Group 2

(One of the following is required):

Group 3

(One of the following is required):

  1. Arts Literacy (CC-AA)

    The student's faculty member will identify the competencies that can best be demonstrated by the work the student will do in the course. In addition, the student may wish to talk to the faculty member about the possibility of fulfilling a different competency in an assignment.

The faculty member will notify the Registrar's Office of his or her acceptance of a student's work as demonstrating a competency. This office will keep track of the competencies completed as part of the student's academic record.

No sample of work submitted for a competency may be used to satisfy more than one competency, and no more than two competencies can be satisfied through work in one course. Meeting competency requirements must be done and certified during the semester the student is enrolled in the course.

Some courses have embedded core competencies. In these courses the opportunity to demonstrate a particular competency is built-in to the curriculum. A student completing the course with a grade of "C" or better is certified as having demonstrated the competency.

The course description section of the catalog identifies courses that have embedded core competencies. Students not needing an embedded competency may inquire of the instructor whether a different competency could be achieved in the course.

Core competencies are a graduation requirement for A.A. and A.S. students beginning with the 2004 catalog year. Students who have earned a degree from an accredited higher education institution, who have completed 15 or more degree credits prior to 2004 or who have transferred in 15 or more credits are exempt from the requirement.

The portfolio is a graduation requirement for AA and AS students beginning with the 2004 catalog year. Students who have earned 15 or more degree credits at BCC prior to Fall 2004 are exempt from the requirement, as are students who transfer in 15 or more credits.

Certificate and non-degree students are not required to complete the core competency requirement. They are, however, encouraged to do so since they may later wish to apply their coursework toward a degree.

Students required to complete a portfolio for graduation may, in extraordinary circumstances, request a substitution or waiver for part of the requirement. Such requests should be addressed to the Program Advisor for Liberal Arts who will make recommendations to the Vice President of Academic Affairs.

Students should contact their academic advisor if they have questions concerning core competencies.


Core Competencies Portfolio Items
(All Items Must be Graded C or Better)



Description of Portfolio Item


Critical Thinking

  • To consider information to form purposeful judgments by using cognitive skills in conscious, organized processes; and 
  • To demonstrate the ability to analyze information
    for accuracy, balance, bias and agenda; to identify inconsistencies in data and argument.


Oral and Written Communication

  • To respond to complex questions in creative and thoughtful ways, considering multiple points of
    view; and
  • To critically evaluate and cogently present researched information in an organized, effective manner as verbal presentation; to develop physical control of delivery; to listen actively; and
  • To write essays focusing on one main idea logically developed with detailed paragraphs; to responsibly and accurately incorporate information from secondary sources.



  • To use current technologies as a tool to extend abilities and to acquire flexibility to be able to use developing technologies; and
  • To be able to gather, analyze, evaluate, and integrate information electronically.


Scientific Knowledge and Reasoning 

  • To understand patterns and processes related to life and the physical universe; to understand causes of observed phenomena and to apply this understanding to prediction of future events; and
  • To understand the implications of the scientific method, including the ability to recognize and state the problem, collect information and data, formulate testable hypotheses, design and conduct experiments, and formulate a conclusion.


Quantitative Reasoning
 and Logical Thinking

  • To demonstrate the application of mathematical understanding either through elementary functions or algebraic equations or by appropriate graphing or modeling requiring analysis of a given problem. To show flexibility within the basis of analysis; and
  • To appraise problem solving options using sequential or systemic logic.


Historical Knowledge
and Reasoning

  • To demonstrate knowledge of historical events, which may include understanding the casual relationship between historical events, and the ability to develop a thesis based on historical evidence; and
  • To interpret historical evidence from primary and/or secondary sources; and
  • To apply historical knowledge and interpretation toward the analysis of current events, and to understand connections between history and other disciplines.


Arts Literacy 

  • To demonstrate knowledge of the creative process or of aesthetic form or demonstrate an ability to act artistically utilizing that knowledge. 


Community and Global Awareness

  • To understand that different cultures and societies, both domestic and international, provide varying contexts for human experience; to analyze ways in which cultural norms and values affect personal experience and perception.
  • To view historical and contemporary events from social, political, economic, environmental, and/or cultural perspectives; to recognize that national and global inequalities have affected social and political relations worldwide.


Human Understanding and Interaction

  • To understand the language and concepts used to analyze human experience, such as the development of cognitive, emotional, and behavioral processes; and
  • To recognize group, institutional, and societal dynamics; to understand human similarities and differences.