Meeting the requirements for the CIS Major can be accomplished in a variety of ways, depending on your foundational major and interdiscimpenary interests. 

Progression through the Linked Major

First and Second Year 

All CIS majors should take CIS 221 and/or CIS 222 in their first or sophomore year. Typically, the summer research experience is fulfilled in the summer between sophomore and junior year.

Junior and Senior Year

We encourage students to build on their summer experience with research credit in both semesters of junior year and to complete an honors thesis in senior year. At least two research credits are required. 

All CIS majors must take the senior colloquium (CIS 321/322) in both semesters of their final year. Additionally, two journal clubs or seminars in two different disciplines are required. 

The linked major requires two additional interdisciplenary electives, most often hosted outside the foundational major. These upper level courses are typically taken in junior and/or senior year. 

Pathways to CIS 

Below are examples of pathways to completing the CIS major that include synergies across departments. These are merely guidelines; each student's course of study is unique. The specific electives and seminars used to fulfill the CIS major requirements should be determined in consultation with the student's CIS linked-major advisor.

Table of Pathways


 Courses in calculus, statistics, and programming


Courses in statistics and programming, biochemistry, or psychology


Courses in physics, applied data, programming, neuroscience, and cell biology

Earth and Environmental Sciences

Courses in calculus, statistics, and programming, and courses in biology, chemistry or physics 

Math and Computer Science

Any course in life or physical sciences

Molecular Biology and Biochemistry

Courses in physics, applied data, programming, neuroscience, and cell biology

Neuroscience and Behavior

Courses offered in biology, psychology, and chemistry that are not cross-listed as NS&B, and biochemistry


Courses in biology, particularly those that are cross-listed with NS&B.