Declaring a Degree, Major and Minor
College policy requires all sophomores and all junior transfers to declare their degree programs and majors by December 2. If you haven't already received one, please obtain a Declaration of Major/Minor Card, available online or from the Registrar's Office. This card must be completed, signed by your departmental advisor(s), and returned to the Registrar's Office (1st Floor, Old Sem). More information can be found in the Cornell College Catalogue under Academic Information, Declaration of Degree Candidacy, Majors, and Minors. This section includes a list of the majors and minors currently offered at the college.
- If you are declaring a Bachelor of Arts [B.A.], Bachelor of Fine Arts [B.F.A], Bachelor of Music [B.Mus.] degree, or Bachelor of Science in Engineering [B.S.E.] circle "B.A.", "B.F.A", "B.Mus" or "B.S.E.", circle the word "Major", and print the name of the major(s) you are declaring. Obtain the signature of the faculty advisor in each program who will be advising you. If you are declaring more than one major, please ask the faculty member who will be your primary advisor to sign on the line provided at the bottom of the card. If you are declaring a minor, circle the word "Minor", obtain the signatures of the faculty advisor in that program who will be advising you. Return the completed and approved card to the Registrar's Office.
- If you are declaring a Bachelor of Special Studies [B.S.S.] degree, obtain a Declaration of B.S.S. Degree card and information packet from the Registrar's Office or access the online degree declaration form. Circle the word "Major", and print the name of the major(s) you are declaring. Obtain the signature of the primary faculty advisor who will be advising you. Please ask the faculty member who will be your primary advisor to sign on the line provided on the card. If you are declaring a minor, circle the word "Minor", obtain the signatures of the faculty advisor in that program who will be advising you. Return the completed and approved card to the Registrar's Office. You should be aware, however, that this declaration alone is not sufficient to establish candidacy for the B.S.S. degree. In order to become a B.S.S. candidate, you must file with the Registrar a B.S.S. Prospectus, approved by your principal B.S.S. advisor and two other faculty members, and must complete at least 12 course credits after filing the Prospectus (6 course credits if you entered as a senior transfer).
Please be aware of the following in filing your declaration:
- Requirements for each major are published in the Cornell College Catalogue. Students are expected to complete the requirements of their major as they were set forth in the Catalogue under which they entered, or those published in the Catalogue Supplement in their first year at Cornell.
- All B.A., B.FA., B.Mus. & B.S.E. candidates are required to complete at least one major. B.S.S. candidates may elect but are not required to have a major. If they choose to complete a major, they are subject to the same departmental or interdisciplinary major requirements as B.A. students.
- In all degree tracks, students are limited to some combination of majors and minors totaling no more than three. Only in the B.S.S. degree can this be a combination of three minors.
- If you wish to declare an Individualized major (i.e. one that you, in consultation with three faculty members, have constructed, as distinct from a departmental or interdisciplinary major listed in the Catalogue), you must also file an Individualized Major Contract and Rationale form, available online or from the Registrar's Office, with your Declaration Card. Please note that you must complete 9 course credits after initially filing this contract.
- Once you have declared a major, you are free to add and drop majors until just before graduation. There is no penalty for declaring a major and later electing to drop it.
- You may, if you wish, declare a minor or minors at this time. Requirements for minors are listed in the current Catalogue.
- Requirements for Combined Degrees Programs are listed in the Catalogue, and require approval by the Academic Standing Committee. A contract for Combined Degrees is available here.
- If you find yourself truly unable to decide upon a major by the December 2 deadline, consult with your faculty advisor about options that may be open to you.
Additional information about declaration of degree candidacy and majors is available in the Cornell College Catalogue under Academic Information, Declaration of Degree Candidacy, Majors, and Minors, and I encourage you to read that section and discuss with your advisor any questions you may have. If you have any questions about this process, or if we may be of assistance in any way, please feel free to call or stop by the Registrar's Office.