Pathways Requirements

All students at Queens College must complete CUNY Pathways (general education) requirements and a major area of study. Your general education courses give you the opportunity to study a broad range and variety of subjects, while your major courses explore a particular discipline in depth.

QC Bachelor's Degree Requirements

The Pathways framework has three parts: the Required Core, the Flexible Core, and the College Option. In addition, all students must complete two Writing Intensive courses, which may overlap with courses taken for Pathways or Major requirements. At Queens College, the Pathways curriculum is an education in the liberal arts and sciences. These courses form the foundation of your college studies, ensuring that whatever your field of expertise, you’ll always be able to draw on a well-rounded educational background.




4 courses:

  • College Writing 1: ENGL110 (EC1)
  • College Writing 2 (EC2)
  • Mathematical and Quantitative Reasoning (MQR)
  • Life and Physical Sciences (LPS)


6 courses:

  • World Cultures and Global Issues (WCGI)
  • U.S. Experience in its Diversity (USED)
  • Creative Expression (CE)
  • Individual and Society (IS)
  • Scientific World (SW)
  • An additional Flexible Core course

      *No more than two courses in any discipline.


4 courses:

  • Literature (LIT)
  • Language (LANG)
  • Science (SCI)
  • An additional course (choose from SYN, LPS, the Flexible Core, or the College Option)


2 courses:

  • Any course with a “W” in their course number (e.g., PHIL 101W). May overlap with Pathways or Major requirements.




For a complete list of courses approved for fulfilling Pathways requirements, see our COURSES page.

You may search for Pathways courses by term within the CUNY Global Search Tool using the field titled ‘Requirement Designation’.

To monitor your progress towards your degree, log into DegreeWorks. DegreeWorks will show you which requirements have been met, which are in progress, and which Pathways requirements you have yet to complete.



Effective Fall 2013, entering students follow a general education curriculum that fits the framework of the CUNY Pathways Initiative. This guarantees that general education requirements fulfilled at one CUNY college will carry over seamlessly if transferred to another.

The Pathways framework has three parts: the Required Core, the Flexible Core, and the College Option.

While the Required Core and Flexible Core are common to all CUNY colleges, the College Option is required only at the senior (4-year) colleges. College Option requirements are structured differently from senior college to senior college. It is possible to transfer college option credits previously completed at another CUNY senior college to QC, but once a student is enrolled at Queens, all remaining College Option credits must be completed in residence.

Pathways course proposals are reviewed by several committees to ensure that they achieve the required set of Pathways Learning Outcomes. These outcomes represent the broad skills and knowledge that students are expected to attain as a result of their educational experiences.

Some courses can be used to satisfy one of several different Pathways requirements, but a single course will never satisfy more than one Pathways requirement. The Academic Advising Center (Kiely 217) can help ensure that courses are assigned to the Pathways requirements in an optimal way.

Students must also complete two Writing Intensive courses (courses with a “W” in their course number), which may overlap with courses taken for Pathways or Major requirements.

Note: Pathways has designated Gateway Courses leading into CUNY’s most popular majors so that students who anticipate pursuing one of these majors can take these designated courses and be able to transfer them for major credit seamlessly between CUNY colleges. Consult an advisor at the Academic Advising Center (Kiely 217) about Gateway Courses at Queens College.

Students may register for courses via CUNYfirst, or speak to an advisor at the Academic Advising Center (Kiely 217).


To obtain a bachelor’s degree from Queens College, you must complete 120 course credits, typically about 40 courses. Within those 120 credits you must complete the general education requirements and the requirements for at least one major course of study (“a major”). It is quite likely that some of your general education courses will overlap with courses within your major. Credits not used to satisfy your general education and/or major requirements may be used to take courses in a second major, a minor, or may be used as free electives.

Of the 120 credits required for a degree, at least 45 credits must be completed in residency at Queens College and at least 30 of the last 64 credits must be taken at Queens College or at the CUNY Graduate Center.


Although it is possible to complete some or even all of your College Option credit requirements at another CUNY senior college before transferring to Queens, once you have enrolled here, all remaining College Option credits must be completed at QC. For transfer students, the number of credits required to complete the College Option varies based on several factors. See the tables below for details.

To verify your individual requirements, visit an advisor at the Academic Advising Center(Kiely 217).

Requirements by Cumulative Credits/Degree:

College Option Requirements by Cumulative Credits


Requirements by Level of Completion:

College Option Requirements by Courses Completed


Students who began at a 4-year baccalaureate program are required to complete 12 Queens College Option credits.
​Students who began at a 2-year associate program may have to complete 6, 9, or 12 QC College Option credits.

Only College Option courses taken in a CUNY baccalaureate program will count towards the QC College Option requirement at QC.


When you transfer to Queens College, all your prior courses will be evaluated for possible Pathways credit. If you feel that any courses were evaluated incorrectly, speak to an advisor at the Academic Advising Center (Kiely 217) about reevaluating your courses. If any course qualifies for reevaluation, the Director of Academic Advising will file an appeal on your behalf to the Director of General Education. If you still feel a course was evaluated incorrectly after following this procedure, Academic Advising can provide you with an appeal form to submit to the Queens College Transfer Appeals Officer. If you’ve completed this process at Queens College, and you still feel a course has been evaluated incorrectly, you may then file a Transfer Credit Appeal with the CUNY Office of Academic Affairs.


    • Transfer students who have completed a bachelor’s, AA or AS degree from SUNY have completed Pathways Required and Flexible Core requirements.
    • Transfer students who’ve completed the 30-credit SUNY GER requirement have completed Pathways Required and Flexible Core Core requirements.
    • In cases where a SUNY GER course has been deemed equivalent to a CUNY Pathways course, the Pathways requirement is deemed fulfilled.