Study in Depth
Choosing a Major. Some students declare their major when they enter Susquehanna. Many others prefer to wait and investigate a number of fields before deciding. Susquehanna welcomes and encourages these undecided students. Students may pursue a "Liberal Arts - Open" option for their first two years. During this time, faculty advisors, department heads and the Center for Career Services can assist them to choose or design a major which satisfies their interests and goals.
To make sure they can complete degree requirements within the normal four-year period of study, students must declare a major by the end of the sophomore year. Those seeking to enter accounting, business, or bachelor of science in economics majors must have a grade average of B or better in course work at Susquehanna and secure the approval of the dean of the Sigmund Weis School of Business. Those seeking to enter programs leading to teacher certification must have a grade average of 3.0 or better and secure the approval of the department. Those seeking to major in music must audition successfully with the music faculty prior to admission.
Departmental Majors. Departmental majors typically consist of eight to twelve courses or 32 to 48 semester hours. Requirements may include courses from related disciplines. Music education, liberal studies, graphic design, computer science, information systems, mathematics, ecology, biology, accounting and business administration require more than 48 semester hours; students choosing these majors should do so early and plan carefully to complete them in four years. Students must complete at least half of their major course work at Susquehanna. Unless it is explicitly stated otherwise in the section for that individual department, a student must earn a grade of at least C- in a course to apply it to his or her major.
Dual Majors. Students pursue dual majors for a variety of reasons. Many have a strong interest in more than one field; others feel that a second major will better prepare them for their profession. Students seeking to declare a dual major must have the approval of both departments and plan their program with a faculty advisor from each. Because completing two majors is demanding, the university expects candidates to have a strong academic record. Most dual majors can be completed in four years, but additional time may be needed depending on the particular combination of majors proposed and the student's academic level when making this decision.
Students pursuing, within the same area, ("area" to be designated by the four-letter introductory code, such as ENGL, WRIT, MATH, CSCI) two emphases, two majors, two minors, or a major and a minor may not apply the same course to two of these programs. If a student is earning an interdisciplinary minor, at least 18 semester hours of that minor must not be counted toward the student's major. If a student is earning an interdisciplinary major, no more than eight semester hours of that major may be counted toward a second major or a minor.
Self-Designed Majors. A self-designed major must contain 48 to 60 semester hours from at least two different departments, with at least 28 to 32 semester hours from one core department. The students receives a primary advisor from this core department and a secondary advisor from one of the other departments from which a number of courses are taken for the major. Only grades of C- or higher may be used to satisfy the requirements for a self-designed major, and the student must have at least a 2.00 GPA in the major. Other degree requirements, such as the university Core, remain in effect for students pursuing self-designed majors and should be included in the plan of study. The plan must be approved by the sponsoring departments and the dean of the school, with the proposal being signed by the primary advisor, secondary advisor, and the department head of the sponsoring department.
Accelerated Degree Options. Most majors, with the exception of accounting, liberal studies and music, adapt to Susquehanna's accelerated degree option, which allows highly motivated students to complete degree requirements in three or three and one-half years of study. For further details, see page 228 in the Academic Regulations section or contact the Office of Admissions.