How do I create an individualized major?
All students considering an individualized major must:
1. Meet with a program advisor (Michael Cunningham or Monica van Beusekom) as early as possible. This advising meeting will allow you to learn more about the program and assess whether your interests are best met through an individualized major.
2. Enroll in our one-credit gateway course, UNIV 2600 Individualized Study Across Academic Disciplines. This course will guide you through the application process and introduce you to how knowledge is organized in the university and to the opportunities and challenges of taking an interdisciplinary approach to learning. Students who are unable to enroll in UNIV 2600 (e.g. second-semester juniors) must seek consent from IISP staff to prepare an application without taking UNIV 2600.
3. Complete an online application. The application will be reviewed by the Individualized Major Advisory and Admissions Committee. It includes three main components:
When should I begin the application process?
You should meet with a program advisor as early as possible. You may enroll in the gateway course as a first-year, sophomore, or first-semester junior. Students in the second semester of their junior year or beyond must consult with program staff.
You may submit an application to the IMJR program once you have completed 30 credits or have achieved third semester status. The latest you may submit an application is prior to registration for your final 30 credits of study. This typically means that you will apply in your sophomore or junior year (but no later than February of your junior year).
See the deadlines page for specific dates and times.
What are the criteria for admission?
The Individualized Major Advisory and Admissions Committee, which is comprised of faculty from CLAS and CAHNR, with representatives from ACES, the School of Business, and the School of Education, makes the admissions decisions. In evaluating an application, the committee will consider two broad criteria:
- Academic standing. You must be in “good standing” and have a GPA of at least 2.0 (for a major in CLAS) or 2.5 (for a major in CAHNR) in order to apply to the Individualized Major Program. To graduate with an individualized major (in both CLAS and CAHNR), you must achieve a major GPA of at least 2.5. Therefore the Committee will consider whether you are likely to meet the GPA requirement for graduation.
- Coherence, rigor, and feasibility of the proposed major. The committee will evaluate whether the major theme (as presented in your statement of purpose) and plan of study form a cohesive and conceptually-sound degree. It will also evaluate the academic rigor of the major, to make sure that it is on par with other majors at the university, and evaluate whether it can be completed as planned.