Some students may wish to pursue a major program that does not fit either the pattern of a departmental major or an interdisciplinary major. The faculty has authorized a process by which a student may work with two faculty members to develop a major program that draws on the offerings of a minimum of two departments. Students must initiate the process of proposing a student-designed major in the sophomore year. Proposals should be submitted by December 1 of the student's Sophomore year.
Open to any student who can secure a primary and a secondary sponsor and whose proposal passes review by the Curriculum Implementation Committee. The written proposal and supporting letters must clearly demonstrate the feasibility and intellectual coherence of the student-designed major. Please be sure proposed courses will be offered at the appropriate times.
A. Proposals will state specifically the goals to be achieved through the implementation of the desired major program and explain why these goals cannot be met with standard major options.
B. The major proposal should include 8-12 courses with alternatives for any courses that are not guaranteed to be offered. It is expected that a range of introductory, intermediate, and advanced courses (at least two of each) will be included in the list. The courses should be listed two ways: by department and by semester.
C. The proposal will include an outline of a synthesizing project and will give a rationale for the length and substance of this project. The synthesizing project will be the student's independent integration of knowledge gained or gathered. Normally, two of the four allowable independent study courses will be devoted to it. Students are advised to take special care in presenting this portion of their proposal.
D. The proposal will represent an agreement in writing between the student, the primary sponsor, and any other sponsor(s).
Letters written by the sponsors in support of the student-designed major should include:
A. If the proposal is to be modified for any reason, such as a course not being offered, the change must be reviewed and approved again by the sponsors and the Curriculum Implementation Committee.
B. The primary sponsor shall fulfill a strong consultative role. His/Her responsibilities will include:
For more information, contact Julie Bedard, Associate Registrar.