University of California, Los Angeles officials are proposing that most undergraduate students be required to take a class in racial cultural, gender or religious diversity in order to graduate.

The Los Angeles Times reports that this is the fourth effort to bring such a requirement to UCLA's College of Letters and Science, which enrolls about 85 percent of undergraduates.

 

Such a requirement has existed at the Arts and Architecture school for the last six years and is at most UC campuses and many other universities. But the curriculum change has been repeatedly rejected in votes by the college's faculty group.

 

Previous proposals have been met with questions about whether students were already overburdened with requirements, whether the university could afford extra classes, or if the classes improve ethnic relations or skew left politically. But UCLA Chancellor Gene Block said it's important for students to have an explicit class that deals with multiple cultures in the United States living together.

 

Faculty leaders are now preparing for another attempt to bring such a requirement to the college for students entering in fall 2015, said Jan Reiff, a UCLA history and statistics professor who is chair of the campus-wide faculty Academic Senate. But this time it may be revised to include more community internships and more science courses, she said.

 

But UCLA anthropology professor Joseph Manson, who opposed a previous effort in 2012, questioned whether it's appropriate to change the curriculum for non-academic, or political, goals.

Read more from the Associated Press at the Santa Maria Times