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Declaring a Major

Students may declare a major after the completion of the second semester, but no later than the fourth semester of residence. (Typically, this deadline is the Friday prior to Spring Break of the sophomore year.) Students declaring a major in one of the recognized fields apply to the appropriate department or program for assignment to an adviser. Students who wish to develop a self-designed interdisciplinary major must follow the guidelines below.

The selection of a major is quite important and is a requirement for completion of the degree. To assist in the selection process, the College of Arts and Science sponsors a majors fair every fall semester where students can familiarize themselves with the requirements for individual majors.

Students officially declare their majors by submitting paperwork to the Office of Academic Services for the College of Arts and Science.

How to Declare a Major

Major declarations forms will not be processed for a five-week period around registration each semester. Declarations and changes received after the last day to withdraw from classes for the semester will be processed after the end of the open enrollment period of registration.

Sophomores and juniors who wish to declare a major or make changes to their major may download a Declaration of Major form. Students will need to print enough forms to leave one each with the major department(s) and the Office of Academic Services for the College of Arts and Science.

  1. Take the form(s) to the department office of the subject area(s) in which you wish to major, where you will be assigned an adviser.
  2. An adviser will discuss the major requirements with you and sign both major declaration forms.
  3. Leave one form with the major department.
  4. Return one form to the Office of Academic Services for the College of Arts and Science (350 Buttrick Hall). For students with multiple majors, the form to be returned to the OAS must have the signature of all major advisers.

Seniors who wish to make changes to their majors may do so only before the fifth class day of their senior year.

Students who wish to declare three majors first must petition the Administrative Committee. Petition forms are available in the Associate Dean’s office (350 Buttrick Hall).

» List of approved majors
» Declaration of Major form

Double and Triple Majors

Students may choose to concentrate in two or three major fields. Each Arts and Science non-interdisciplinary major must include at least 24 credit hours that are being counted solely toward the major.


Individually-Created Interdisciplinary Major

The individually-designed interdisciplinary major permits students to contract for an individually-designed program of concentration consisting of at least 48 hours of approved work. The program is constructed around a coherent academic purpose and may draw together the academic resources of a number of departments and schools. A student who wishes to develop such a program must first submit a written proposal to the Committee on Individual Programs. See detailed guidelines here. In addition to a written rationale and course plan for the major, a student seeking an individually-designed interdisciplinary major must complete a Declaration of Major form.

Students who wish to propose an individually-designed interdisciplinary major must deliver the completed course plan (with the faculty adviser's signature), the written rationale, and the declaration of major form (also with the adviser’s signature) to 350 Buttrick Hall. Please contact her to find out the deadline for submitting the paperwork.

Please note that the planned courses will be entered into the student's record exactly as written on the course plan. Students should make every effort for clarity and accuracy. The student's course plan for an interdisciplinary major is deemed to be a statement of required courses for the major. The student must achieve at least a 2.000 average in all work taken toward fulfillment of the course plan.

A student who wishes to make changes to an interdisciplinary major must complete the Request for Change in Contract for Interdisciplinary Major, secure the adviser’s signature, and submit the changes for approval by an associate dean in 350 Buttrick Hall.

» Interdisciplinary Major Course Plan
» Request for Change in Interdisciplinary Major Course Plan

Students may choose to combine an interdisciplinary major (including majors offered through the Interdisciplinary Programs) with a more traditional major. Upon approval of the Committee on Individual Programs and the student's adviser, (a) as many as 6 hours may be counted as part of both the interdisciplinary major and the second major, or (b) normally, no more than three introductory-level courses will be counted toward the interdisciplinary major.