Changes to Requirements of the Major

Occasionally a department will seek to change the requirements for its major or to undertake a more extensive revision of its program than the mere substitution of one course for a similar course or the addition of particular courses to a list of options that may fulfill a specific requirement. The Course of Study Committee must review any significant changes to the requirements of a major program, including the substitution of a course at one level for a course at a different level, changes to the number of courses or course credits required for the major, or a shift in the types of courses required.

Major requirements are recorded in a department’s program description in Yale College Programs of Study (YCPS); this description is in a sense contractual. If the Course of Study Committee should approve changes to the requirements of a major, it is ordinarily expected that students will be held to the requirements in effect no later than the year in which they elected their major. A department cannot make new major requirements mandatory for students who will be juniors or seniors in the academic year during which the changes go into effect; however, such majors may elect to complete the new requirements with department approval. Because many students plan ahead carefully, a department that changes its major requirements should consider making the changes effective only for the freshman class and subsequent classes.

The DUS is responsible for presenting a proposal for changes to the major to the Course of Study Committee after consultation with the departmental student advisory committee and approval by the departmental faculty. In addition to submitting a written version of revised YCPS copy incorporating the proposed changes and the reasons for them, you might be invited to attend the meeting of the committee at which they are discussed. Proposals should be sent to Emily Shandley, Secretary to the CSC Chair, for inclusion on the committee’s agenda.