B4 Lower Division Quantitative Reasoning

Course Expectations for Lower Division Mathematics/Quantitative Reasoning (B4) (3units)

To be certified by the Baccalaureate Requirements Committee as meeting the lower-division mathematics (Area B4)


  1. The course must be lower division and open to all students. Courses that are numbered between 100 and 199 may not have prerequisites (except the two-semester “stretch” courses where the first semester course is a prerequisite to the second semester course) other than passage of an assessment test (which might include departmental tests) to determine placement in the subject. Courses that are numbered between 200 and 299 may have a single prerequisite together with a departmental test to gauge the student’s immediate readiness, but departments and programs must provide an adequate justification for that prerequisite. Typically, students should be eligible to enroll in lower division general education courses in their first year. Prerequisite assessments and scores must be available within 7 calendars days from the start of the semester.

  2. The course syllabus must list the university-approved student learning outcomes for Mathematics/Quantitative Reasoning (B4) and link them to activities and/or assignments that students complete to demonstrate they have met the outcomes.

  3. The course must stress the importance of presenting information accurately, applying mathematical models or methods appropriately, respecting the rights and welfare of others when collecting or disseminating quantitative information, and/or presenting information in a manner suitable for those receiving that information.


Student Learning Outcomes for Lower Division Mathematics/Quantitative Reasoning (B4) (3 units)

After completion of a lower division general education course in mathematics/quantitative reasoning, students will be able to:


  1. interpret mathematical models such as formulae, graphs, tables, and schematics, and draw inferences from them; represent mathematical information symbolically, visually, numerically, and verbally;

  2. interpret and draw conclusions from quantitative materials and use those materials to construct mathematical models;

  3. use arithmetical, algebraic, geometric and and/or statistical methods to solve problems; explain and apply mathematical concepts; use computational skills and appropriate technology to carry out mathematical operations;

  4. estimate and check answers to mathematical problems in order to determine reasonableness, identify alternatives, and select optimal results;

  5. identify ways in which use of quantitative methods impacts our society or environment.




Links between Educational Goals and Outcomes for Lower Division Mathematics/Quantitative Reasoning

The student learning outcomes were developed in relationship to the “Educational Goals for the Baccalaureate at San Francisco State University.” The chart below illustrates that relationship for lower division mathematics/quantitative reasoning. The numbers correspond to the way the educational goals and student learning outcomes are numbered above.


Links Between Educational Goals and Learning Outcomes

Educational Goals

Student Learning Outcomes for Lower Division Mathematics/Quantitative Reasoning

1. Competencies for Lifelong Intellectual Endeavor

1, 2, 3, 4

2. Intellectual Attainments

1, 2, 3

3. Ethical Engagement


4. Integration and Application of Knowledge