What are the Ways of Thinking/Ways of Doing Requirements?

About the Ways

The Ways of Thinking/Ways of Doing (Ways) is the core of your general education requirement and your path to creating your own custom toolkit of intellectual skills to use here at Stanford and take with you when you graduate. The Ways comprise a total of 11 courses in a wide-range of disciplines that will both complement the classes required for a major and may also count towards the major.


The Ways system requires that classes be taken from 8 broad categories: Creative Expression (CE - 2 units in 1 or 2 courses), Aesthetic and Interpretive Inquiry (AII - 2 courses), Social Inquiry (SI - 2 courses), Applied Quantitative Reasoning (AQR - 1 course), Scientific Method and Analysis (SMA - 2 courses), Formal Reasoning (FR - 1 course), Ethical Reasoning (ER - 1 course), and Engaging Diversity (ED - 1 course). Courses may be certified to fulfill more than one Way, but each course can only be counted towards fulfilling one Ways requirement for a particular student. See a fuller description at the Ways website.

One great aspect of this new system is that it provides a great deal of flexibility in the classes that you can take to fulfill each requirement. For instance, the AQR requirement could be fulfilled by taking a AQR Ways-certified Engineering course, but it could also be fulfilled by taking a AQR Ways-certified course in Political Science.

The front page of ExploreCourses links to lists of Ways-certified courses; just scroll down the page.

More information on the WAYS requirements