What is a major?

The question you’ll hear the most while you’re a college student is probably “What’s your major?” Before you can answer that, you might be wondering, “What is a major?”

Your major determines your course of study as a student. For most majors in the College, that means you will spend around 30 credit hours taking courses in a specific subject. The College currently offers 57 majors, making it the most diverse school at KU. Even for those planning to major in something like business or engineering, you can add a second major in the College to diversify your experience. Students in the College can also double major—in fact, it’s encouraged! Our requirements are flexible to make it easier for you to combine areas of interest without adding on to your time to graduation.

Explore our majors.

Worried about the course load of double majoring? Try a minor instead!

A minor allows you to explore a subject area without committing to a full major. Most minors require somewhere between 18 and 20 credit hours, meaning you will get to learn a subject more in-depth, but with fewer requirements than the full major. You can select more than one minor. There are many strategic ways to pair a major and a minor to make the most of your time in the College. Check with your advisor about pairing a major and a minor to make the most of your time in the College.

Are there any other options for focused study?

In addition to minors, the College also offers certificates in specialized areas. Certificates typically require 12 credits hours and are sponsored by two or more departments. Adding a certificate will give you an opportunity to learn about a particular subject or issue from different perspectives. A certificate will not show up on your official transcript, but it is a great way to improve your knowledge on a particular subject. The College currently offers several certificates.

Certificates offered:

  • Astrophysics of Origins
  • Climate and Climate Change
  • Creative and Analytical Writing
  • Critical Thinking and Writing
  • Geographic Information Science
  • Learning and Communication in Children with Autism
  • Military Transition
  • Mind and Brain
  • Professional Communication (online)
  • Race and Ethnicity in the U.S.
  • South Asian Culture
  • World Business Culture
  • World Literature