Students with the talent and energy for working independently and with the strong support of faculty advisors may undertake a Contract Major: a coherent study of an interdisciplinary subject not covered by a regularly offered major. The purpose of a Contract Major is to allow highly motivated students to follow a course of study outside the boundaries of established majors. Students have an opportunity to draw from the wealth of offered courses and develop a major that corresponds to their particular interests and goals.
A Contract Major must be in an area suitable to the talents of the faculty in residence and cannot consist of modifications to an existing major. A Contract Major also must conform to the structure and coherence of a departmental or program major—it must embody a disciplined study that moves from an elementary to an advanced level and culminate in a synthesis similar to a senior major course.
Developing a Contract Major proposal is both interesting and demanding. Due to these demands, students should carefully consider the advantage of working within existing majors or programs, taking note of the considerable intellectual pleasures involved in sharing similar educational experiences with other students working within the same area of study.
Students who wish to explore or propose a Contract Major should consult with the Contract Major Advisor and potential faculty advisors as early as possible first semester of sophomore year. More information can be found on the Contract Major site.