Jul 01, 2022  
2020-2021 Undergraduate Catalog 
2020-2021 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Exploratory Curriculum: Arts & Humanities Pathway

Exploratory Curriculum

Total Hours: 36

The Exploratory Curriculum (ECM) allows USF students to register for up to 36 credit hours before they must officially declare a major. During this time they will focus on satisfying the State and USF General Education requirements, which are needed for any major at USF. These courses are a great way to learn about career fields and academic disciplines that students may not be familiar with yet.

The cornerstone of the Exploratory Curriculum (ECM) is the customized student success course entitled U-Decide, a first-year experience course with a significant major/career exploration component (offered as IDS 2378 - Critical Thinking: Foundations of Interdisciplinary Knowledge and Inquiry  or SLS 2901 - Academic Foundations Seminar ). The goal of the course and the Exploratory Curriculum experience is to equip students with the ability to make decisions regarding their future. The economic and career landscape is always changing, and this new generation of students needs to be able to adapt at a much higher rate than previous generations.

Disclaimer: The Exploratory program is not a major from which you can graduate. During the program, a student will focus on satisfying the Enhanced General Education (Gen Ed.) requirements, which are needed for any major at USF. These courses are a great way to learn about career fields and academic disciplines that you may not be familiar with yet while staying on path for a timely graduation.

State Mandated Common Course Prerequisites

There are no specified common prerequisites for this major. All Florida College System students are encouraged to complete the Associate of Arts degree. Students should consult with an academic advisor in their major degree area at the intended transfer institution. 

The following is language approved by those colleges with BAS degree programs: Admission to Bachelor of Applied Science (B.A.S.) degree programs usually requires an Associate in Science (A.S.) or Associate in Applied Science (A.A.S.) degree in a related area. If a student has earned an Associate in Arts (A.A.) degree, or an A.S. degree, an A.A.S. degree, or its equivalent in an unrelated area, the student may be admitted on a case-by-case basis with approval of the appropriate academic administrator. Some majors may have licensure or other types of requirements prior to admittance. Due to the variance in specialized B.A.S. degree programs and concentrations, students are strongly encouraged to consult with an academic advisor at the B.A.S degree-granting institution.

Program Admission Information

To be admitted to the Exploratory Curriculum (ECM), a student should be at or below 36 college credits at the time of orientation. If a student is in AP, IB, Dual Enrollment, AICE or any other college credit accruing program in high school, please reach out to the Exploratory advisor for further options. You can reach the ECM advisor at ECMadvise@usf.edu.

Exploratory Curriculum Pathways

  • Math, Engineering & Technology
  • Business
  • Arts & Humanities
  • Health & Natural Sciences
  • Global & Social Sciences

Required Course for the Pathway programs: 3 Hours

The only program requirement for the Exploratory Curriculum (ECM) is the registration and completion of the mandatory U-Decide course during a student’s first Fall or Spring semester (offered as IDS 2378 - Critical Thinking: Foundations of Interdisciplinary Knowledge and Inquiry  or SLS 2901 - Academic Foundations Seminar ). The course is not offered during any Summer semesters.

Arts & Humanities Pathway

This Pathway is designed for students interested in learning more about Communication-based careers such as Advertising, PR, Journalism, and Social Media. Students interested in learning how to use an English major to achieve high paying jobs will benefit from this Pathway, as well as, those interested in a global career such as World Languages and Cultures, Art History, or Studio Art. Students wanting to learn more about the Accelerated Master program in Architecture can use this Pathway as a foundation for the Accelerated Master. Finally, this Pathway is recommended for those awaiting entry into an Art major based on an audition in Music or Dance.

Students from this Pathway often go into any of the following majors:

Architecture Classics Humanities Philosophy
Art Studio Communication History Religious Studies
Art History Dance Mass Communications Theatre
American Studies English Music World Languages

Exploratory Curriculum - Additional Information

Research Opportunities

Undergraduate students in any degree program are able to participate in undergraduate research. Several options exist to show mentored undergraduate research activity on a student’s official transcript. Those who wish to enroll in an undergraduate research course should consult with their academic advisor to understand how the credit will apply towards the degree requirements. If no credit is needed, students may be eligible to enroll in the 0-credit IDS 4914  course. This course will not impact degree credits or GPA but will show on an official transcript and document the experience. The Office of Undergraduate Research is able to assist with further inquiries.

Accreditation Information

The University of South Florida (USF) is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools’ Commission on Colleges. 

Advising Information

Contact Shane Combs at 813-974-2645 or ECMadvise@usf.edu.
Exploratory Pathways website: http://usf.edu/ECM

1 Year Plan of Study - Exploratory Curriculum: Arts & Humanities


Year 1

Semester 1 (Fall)

Total Credit Hours: 15

Semester 2 (Spring)

Total Credit Hours: 15

Semester 3 (Summer)

Total Credit Hours: 6