The Summit Program

Students have the option of joining the Summit Program as an alternative way to fulfill either 6 of their 9 units of Upper-Division General Education requirements (Area F General Education requirements). Students select a cluster of 2 courses in one of the following combinations:
  1. One Math/Science course (F1) and one Humanities course (F2); or
  2. One Math/Science course (F1) and one Social Science course (F3); or
  3. One Humanities course (F2) and one Social Science course (F3)

Some clusters also fulfill the multicultural requirement (Area G General Education requirements).

For the curricular area not covered by the 2-course cluster, students will select an Upper-Division General Education course from the traditional menu (area F1, F2, or F3).

Features of the Summit Program

  • Each cluster includes 2 courses that have been linked to an engaging topic. Faculty members will integrate the courses so that what students learn in one course will become the foundation for learning in the next course.
  • Students will take the courses in the cluster with the same classmates, enabling them to get to know each other and interact in class discussions and group projects.
  • The faculty members in the cluster may be interacting with students during both cluster courses, enabling students to develop a personal relationship with their instructors.
  • During the first class meeting of the cluster, students will complete a learning contract that summarizes information about the program.
  • Enrolling in the Summit Program can begin in the term in which a student attains upper-division status (completion of 60 semester units).
  • Any student may enroll in any cluster, regardless of his/her major, and have the cluster fulfill the Upper-Division General Education requirement in the areas indicated.
  • Summit courses used to meet the Upper-Division General Education requirement cannot be electives for a major or concentration; they may, however, be used as electives in a minor.

Enrollment and Credit towards the General Education Requirement

  • Each semester students enroll via web registration for the appropriate cluster course.
  • Students must successfully complete all courses in the cluster to have these courses fulfill 6 of the 9 units of the Upper-Division General Education requirements.


2008-09 Summit Clusters:

Cluster 1

War & Peace (fulfills Areas F1, F2, and G)


These classes will examine issues of global conflict in the post-WWII era, focusing on the Cold War, the Vietnam War, and the Gulf War through film, literature, and technology.

Fall 2008:

PHYS 3550, Physics for War, Physics for Peace, 3 units

Winter 2009:

ENGL 3550, Years of War, Days of Peace: Post-1945 Literature and Film,* 3 units

Cluster 2

Waking Up to Nature: Ethics, Ecology, and Restoration Practices (fulfills Areas F2,F3 and G)


Do you think we can live in a world without the spotted owl? Consider environmental issues around the world and close to home. Make a real contribution to our understanding of the Central Valley environment.

Fall 2008:
PHIL 4050, Environmental Ethics, 3 units
Spring 2009:
GEOG 4050, Restorative Human Ecology,* 3 units
Cluster 3
The Real World (fulfills Areas F2 and F3)


These classes will examine issues of business decision-making and ethical considerations in decision-making. What strategies should we use to make financial decisions? What justifies giving priority to ethical decision-making in practical contexts like business?

Winter 2009:
ACCT 3170, Real World Accounting, 3 units
Spring 2009 :
PHIL 3170 Real World Business Ethics, 3 units
Cluster 4
Humans in the Information Age (fulfills Areas F2, F3 and G)
Why do we value the kinds of information we seek? What is the mearning of the information? In this cluster we will examine questions like these about information and meaning, such as what information we value and how we act on our choices.
Winter 2009:
COGS 4350, The Information of Meaning,* 3 units
Spring 2009:
PHIL 4350, Human Interests and the Power of Information, 3 units
Cluster 5
Origins of Latin American Identities (fulfills Areas F2, F3 and G)


These classes explore the conceptual aspects and concrete experiences shaping the configuration of identities in Latin American contexts, from the late 15th century to the present. Emphasis is placed on the configuration of identities out of multicultural and multilingual contexts, in contrast to European centered culture. These themes are engaged particularly in texts, painting, and film.

Fall 2008:
ANTH 4850 Crafting Maya Identities: Household Archaeology in Mesoamerica, 3 units*
Spring 2009:
HUM 4850 Latin American Identities: Between Written Word and Image, 3 units
*Courses designated with an asterisk fulfill the Multicultural Requirement, Area G.