Individual Major Overview
The Individual Major permits highly qualified and motivated students in the College of Letters & Science to design
their own major. This option is available to those outstanding students
who have well-defined, interdisciplinary interests for which no suitable
major is offered in the traditional academic disciplines.
Individual Major Requirements
- Any student requesting an individual major should
have completed at least three quarters of work in the University of California,
with a minimum of 45 UCLA units and with a grade point average of 3.4.
The major must be submitted and approved no later than the first week of classes
of the third quarter before the student's intended graduation.
- All requests for individual majors should be accompanied
by a proposal from the student defining the purposes of the major and
its relation to the student's goals, and explaining the reasons why the
program cannot be accommodated within some existing major.
There must be
an accompanying letter of support from two faculty advisors indicating that there
has been serious faculty consultation devising the program. The two faculty
advisors (one primary advisor and a secondary) should be regular members
of the faculty of the College of Letters and Science with a professorial
title in a department that offers a major in the College.
- Each request for an individual major should list
the course numbers and titles in the preparation for the major and in the
major itself, including an indication of the relevance of each course or
group of courses to the program. The major should consist of at least twelve
and not more than fifteen upper division courses, a majority of which are
in departments offering a major in Letters and Science. Some flexibility
is often desirable, in the form of alternative courses within specific
groups in the major, to allow for scheduling problems and other unforeseen
- A senior thesis is required of each student with
an individual major. The thesis should synthesize and integrate a principal
theme or themes common to the courses comprising the major.
Credit in some 199 courses may be given for
preparation of the thesis during the final quarter, provided that appropriate
departmental approval is obtained.
The faculty advisors will be responsible for reviewing the quality of the senior thesis which will also include letters of support. An abstract must be submitted,
in addition to the thesis. A copy of the thesis and any additional materials must be filed in the Honors office no
later than Friday of finals week of the student's last quarter.
- The major may not include any courses taken on a
P/NP basis, although one of two 199 courses may be included in the major
and may be graded this way.
- Programs should not be designed merely as short-cuts
to graduation, or in order to evade requirements in a departmental major.
When a program is close to some departmental major that has a language
requirement, the individual major must itself include a language requirement
comparable to that of the related department, as preparation for the major.
This requirement need not be fulfilled before starting on the major, but
should be completed no later than the junior year.
- Each individual major should have a brief title that
reflects the central theme of the major.
For additional information on Individual Majors,
make an appointment with Honors Counselor, Toi Turner