Academic News

Pathways Update: Message from Executive Vice Chancellor and University Provost Alexandra W. Logue

June 5, 2013

I am pleased to provide this update on the implementation of the University-wide Pathways initiative, which has established a new framework for general education at CUNY, enhanced credit-transfer policies, including for many majors, and is offering a rich array of core courses developed and approved by faculty. We are completely on track for full implementation of Pathways this fall, as required by the June 2011 Board of Trustees resolution.

All CUNY college campuses have had all Pathways general education courses needed for the fall — approximately 2,000 courses in total — approved by the Board of Trustees, and undergraduates completing those courses will be able to receive credit for them at any CUNY college. Courses approved for the Pathways Common Core, most of them already existing but some of them newly designed, cover the full spectrum of college subjects from “Fundamentals of Organic Chemistry” at Borough of Manhattan Community College and “Analytic Geometry and Calculus” at York College, to “American Pluralism to 1877” at Brooklyn College, “Medieval and Renaissance Literature” at Hostos Community College and “Beginning Mandarin Chinese” at College of Staten Island. All Pathways courses have been developed by CUNY faculty and approved by faculty teams as meeting clear academic standards and learning outcomes, a key principle of the Pathways reform. The approved course list is posted at

University-wide, 95 percent of undergraduate degree programs have been aligned with Pathways requirements, and the remainder will be completed by the summer. University committees, meanwhile, have identified the CUNY-wide gateway courses leading into 10 majors. These 10 majors represent about two-thirds of students who transfer with a major.

All entering first-time freshmen and all new undergraduate transfer students, from within or outside of CUNY, must meet the new general education requirements, and existing CUNY undergraduates are clearly availing themselves of their option to take Pathways courses.

The total number of enrollments in Pathways courses for fall 2013 is now close to 200,000. As of early June, well over 3,000 undergraduates who will enter CUNY colleges in fall 2013 have already registered for Pathways courses, with many more expected to do so in the coming months. (Approximately 58,000 total new students are projected to enroll in Pathways courses this year, based on 2012 University enrollment figures for first-time freshmen and transfer students.)

Extensive Pathways training of advisors is ongoing, and CUNY’s software systems have been, and are being, changed to help students pick Pathways courses and to indicate when students have successfully completed these courses. In addition, a Student Rights and Responsibilities document has been created and widely distributed, to help students identify situations in which Pathways policies are not being fulfilled, and to guide students on what actions to take in such situations. The document may be viewed at

We want again to thank all of the faculty and staff who have arduously worked to develop and implement this program that will assure substantially greater student access to a wider choice of courses, including more advanced courses. Thank you for your dedication to academic excellence in the service of student success.

Alexandra W. Logue
Executive Vice Chancellor and University Provost
The City University of New York