Timeline for Choosing and Declaring a Major

The major declaration process begins in the second semester of the sophomore year. A small number of students (fall second-semester sophomores) must declare in the fall. For those students declaring in the spring, the following timeline may be helpful:

In the first year, explore the Wesleyan curriculum. One way to do this is through the General Education Expectations. As you register for courses, think about practicing "directed exploration": Taking a gateway or intro course is a good way to explore a department or program, and the course will also count for the major should you choose that major in your sophomore year. For more information, consult the individual course page, ask your faculty advisor or departmental advising expert, or talk with your class dean.

In the fall of your sophomore year, talk to faculty about their fields and their programs or departments. Talk with your advisor about ideas for settling on a major. Visit department and program chairs and advising experts with specific questions. Read the Guide to Choosing a Major. Use your courses to continue to explore the curriculum. Make an appointment with the sophomore class dean if you are worried about your major.

Course registration happens in November. Remember that you will have half of the spring semester before you declare, which means there is still time to explore areas of interest. If you are considering more than one major, try to register for one class in each of those areas. 

Read the descriptions of major requirements for different departments on their department home pages. If there is a required gateway course for a major you are considering, register for that. If you are unable to register for a gateway, talk to the department or program chair or advising expert to see if there are other paths by which one may enter the major.  Often there are more options than may be readily apparent.

Visit department and program open houses in late-October/early-November. Faculty will answer questions about the major and explain the declaration process. Students are encouraged to visit multiple open houses if they are undecided. 

In February you will receive information from the sophomore class dean urging you to declare your major(s) on your WesPortal.

You should declare your major prior to pre-registration in your fourth term of enrollment. This deadline is in place to ensure major preference in April course registration. Students who are worried about not meeting this deadline should meet with the sophomore class dean.