Highly motivated and creative students may propose individualized
programs of study that combine insights, information, and methods from
several traditional disciplines.
Customized majors may focus on historical periods, key ideas,
enduring questions, and/or new problems. For instance, a student might
study Modernism in history, literature, art, and music; or they might
explore the ideas of freedom and responsibility in philosophy,
sociology, and political science; or they might combine insights from
environmental studies, communications, and education to investigate the
challenge of teaching ecological literacy.
Potential concentrations include such fields as Aging Studies, Arts
Finance, Disability Studies, Environmental Entrepreneurship, Healthcare
Marketing, Medical Ethics, Music Therapy, New Media Studies, Postmodern
Studies, Spanish Teaching, Sustainable development, Urban Education,
Water Studies, and more.
A Customized Major must consist of at least fifty credit hours of
courses from two or more academic departments or programs. This
curriculum must be unified by a solid conceptual framework that reflects
both breadth and depth of inquiry. There must be a demonstrable
relation to the student's career or educational objectives. The program
must culminate in an integrative capstone project or thesis.
Applying to the Program
Since designing a Customized major can take several months, students interested in the program should contact the Director as early as possible in their academic careers. The Director will schedule an interview to discuss the applicant's academic history and interests, explain the process of designing and proposing a Customized Major, and refer the student to faculty members who can provide curricular advice. The applicant will design an individualized plan of study with the help of an Advisory Committee that consists of two or more faculty members in relevant disciplines. The completed application should be submitted to the Director for approval at least three semesters before the applicant's planned graduation date.