Skip to main content

Hunter Core Requirement - Fall 2013 to Spring 2019

(Effective Fall 2013, if you are a current Hunter student who started before fall 2013, see here for information concerning whether to “opt in” to the Hunter Core or continue with Hunter’s General Education requirements Fall 2011-Spring 2013.

All students who matriculate at Hunter College must fulfill the Hunter Core Requirement (Hunter Core, HCR). This is a set of courses Hunter College considers essential to the intellectual development of its undergraduates. The Hunter Core requirements and expectations are meant to support the professional and personal development of Hunter students, prepare them for advanced study, and enable them to become active participants in the world of ideas.

The Hunter Core provides students with opportunities to sharpen their essential academic skills in writing, mathematics, scientific reasoning, and critical thinking. The Hunter Core also introduces students to a spectrum of distinctive perspectives with which various academic disciplines view our world, its past, and its future.

The Hunter Core is distinguished by its emphasis on foreign language study and its encouragement of concentrated student achievement in a subject outside the student’s first major. Hunter encourages all students to take an active role in planning their education, and to pursue and develop subjects of interest beyond what is required for their major.

Hunter Core

The Hunter Core includes:

  1. The CUNY Common Core, comprising 30 credits;

  2. The Hunter Focus comprising 12 credits

CUNY Common Core Requirement

consists of designated courses in:

A. English Composition consists of 2 courses English Composition 1 and 2 (6 credits)

B. Math and Quantitive Reasoning  MQR (3 credits) **

C. Life and Physical Sciences (3 credits) LPS **

D. Scientific World - SW (3 credits) **

E. Creative Expression (3 credits)

F. US Experience in Its Diversity  (3 credits)

G. World Cultures & Global Issues (3 credits)

H. Individual & Society consists of 6 credits, one course from each of the following categories: Individual and Society (Humanities), and Individual and Society (Social Sciences)  


  • Students may take no more than two courses from one department or program to fulfill categories A through H.

  • *Students who receive an “exemption” for ENGL 12000 or for a course in English Comp 2 are deemed to have fulfilled English Composition 1 or 2, respectively.

  • **There are some courses in these categories that carry more than 3 credits (the “STEM variant” courses). Students who elect to take these courses may apply only three credits towards fulfilling the CUNY Common Core Requirement. — These courses, labeled STEM, may be found in three areas of the Common Core: Math/Quantitative Reasoning , Life and Physical Sciences and Scientific World. A particular STEM variant course may appear in more than one area of the Common Core. When this occurs, students may choose which area of the Common Core they want the course to fulfill. STEM variant courses may be more than three credits. In such cases, three credits will apply to fulfilling the Common Core; all of the course’s credits will apply to the major.

The Hunter Focus  

Beyond the CUNY Common Core, Hunter requires students to complete 12 credits for the Hunter Focus. These credits are part of the CUNY College Option – an additional set of requirements in the baccalaureate programs that encourage students to delve more deeply in the specialties of the colleges. The Hunter focus emphasizes foreign language and concentrated study – two areas of study that highlight Hunter’s current and historic focus on the liberal arts. Hunter students are expected to attain fourth-semester proficiency in a foreign language, regardless of where the learning took place. After this goal has been met, students should begin concentrated study in an area outside of their first major. The composition of the Hunter Focus will vary depending on students’ language proficiency at the time of matriculation. Students who have to take a beginning language course must apply all their language credits to the Hunter Focus. Students in the Hunter College School of Nursing may fulfill their entire 12 credits of Hunter Focus by taking three “STEM variant” science courses in addition to the STEM courses used to fulfill the CUNY Common Core.

Hunter Focus in Language Proficiency. The goal of the language proficiency requirement is to help students attain cross-cultural knowledge and communicate in a language other than English. In studying foreign languages, as well as their literatures and cultures, students acquire new perspectives on how people think, view the world, express themselves, and communicate with one another. Language study sensitizes students to the differences between their own culture and that of others, an important factor in an interconnected and interdependent world. Students are required to complete up to 12 credits in a Foreign Language depending upon the student’s language knowledge at the time of matriculation and a student’s matriculation status. (See Considerations for Transfer Students below.) Students may apply only one course at each level (Elementary levels 1 and 2, Intermediate levels 3 and 4) toward the CUNY College Option. Intensive courses can be used to satisfy two levels. It is strongly recommended that students complete their foreign language study as early as possible so they can benefit from it in their college career. Foreign Language courses should be taken in consecutive semesters because gaps in language study are undesirable.

Hunter Focus: Concentrated Study. This requirement encourages students to begin concentrated study outside of their major. Students who have gained fourth semester language proficiency should make progress toward a minor, second major, or certificate (they will not complete such a program within Concentrated Study, but take first steps towards it). The number of credit hours that must be completed in the Concentrated Study requirement depends on a student’s entry status and achievements prior to entering Hunter and ranges from 0 to 12.  (See Considerations for Transfer Students below.) It is necessary for a student to indicate a minor, second major or certificate program. Credit for Concentrated Study is granted only for courses completed within that same declared course of study.

Concurrent Course Requirements

Hunter College requires students to take some courses that are writing intensive and some that deal with issues of Pluralism and Diversity. These courses can be part of the Hunter Core Requirement (HCR) or any major or minor requirements, or electives.

Courses for Pluralism and DiversityThis group of courses addresses topics that help students broaden their horizons and gain new perspectives. The Pluralism and Diversity courses are grouped into four categories (A, B, C and D) that focus on scholarship about major practical or theoretical issues that emerge from, are reflected in, or are principally derived from the historical conditions, perspectives, and/or intellectual traditions of:

A. Non-European societies, particularly those of Africa, Asia, Latin America, or those indigenous to the Americas

B. One or more of the following groups in the US: African Americans, Asian Americans, Latino Americans, and Native Americans,

C. Women and/or issues of gender or sexual orientation,

D. Europe, including ways in which pluralism and diversity have been addressed.

Considerations for Transfer Students

2nd Degree Students. Students who have earned a baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution are exempt from the Hunter Core Requirement and all concurrent requirements.

CUNY Common Core. All CUNY transfer students retain completion of the CUNY Common Core requirements when transferring to Hunter College. Transfer students who have earned an AA/AS degree from an accredited institution and who matriculate in fall 2013 and after will have fulfilled the CUNY Common Core requirements by obtaining the AA/AS degree.

Hunter Focus

All transfer students, including CUNY transfers, must complete the Hunter Focus. The number of credits required to complete the Hunter Focus varies with the number of credits transferred as indicated below:

  • 12 credits of Hunter Focus for fewer than 30 credits transferred

  • 9 credits of Hunter Focus for 30 or more credits transferred without an AA/AS degree*

  • 6 credits of Hunter Focus for students with an AA/AS degree

 *A transfer student who first matriculates in a baccalaureate program must complete 12 credits of Hunter Focus. The student can apply any “College Option” credits completed at a CUNY senior college toward the Hunter Focus.

Language Proficiency. Hunter encourages all students to reach fourth-semester proficiency in a foreign language. Transfer students who have not attained fourth-semester proficiency in a foreign language at the time of transfer must apply the foreign language requirement towards the Hunter Focus. Students must either continue a language they have studied previously or begin the study of a different language at Hunter for the number of credits required by their transfer status.

Concentrated Study. Hunter encourages all students to delve deeply into another area in addition to their major by completing a minor, a second major, or a certificate program. Transfer students who have fulfilled the foreign language requirement should apply Hunter Focus courses towards a minor, second major or certificate program.

Writing Intensive. All students must take at least one course with a “W” designation from Hunter College. The number of “W” designated courses required are:

  • 3 for students who transfer fewer than 31 credits

  • 2 for students who transfer between 31-59 credits

  • 1 for students who transfer 60 or more credits

Pluralism and Diversity. Transfer students must take courses in Pluralism and Diversity according to the schedule below:

  • 4 courses for students who transfer fewer than 31 credits – one from each Group (A, B, C, and D).

  • 2 courses for students who transfer 31 or more credits. These two courses must come from Groups A, B, or C and the two courses cannot come from the same Group.