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Self-Designed Major


Learn more about major/minor requirements and courses in the College Catalog


At Millsaps you can design your own major to best fit your personality, your career goals, and your specific educational needs.

The Self-Designed Major (SDM) is a customized major designed by a student working closely with appropriate faculty. The curricular, instructional, and administrative framework for the pursuit of an SDM is not, by contrast with that of standard majors, already in place. It must be constructed by a special effort. Although members of the faculty and administration of the College stand ready to help the student at many points along the way, the initiative for this special effort lies with the student. Consequently, a higher degree of self-motivation may be demanded of a person desiring an SDM than those traveling the more established routes to graduation.

If you have any difficulty with the forms, contact Dr. David Davis, coordinator of self-designed majors, or Kathie Adams, assistant registrar.


Basic Requirements

The following requirements apply to all SDMs:

  • Theme: The proposed SDM must focus on a coherent theme or issue and demonstrate an integration of the contributing disciplines
  • GPA: The applicant must have at least a 3.0 GPA
  • Coursework: The proposed SDM will normally include at least 12 courses from two or three departments (including a Senior Seminar) and must include at least 5 courses in one department, including at least one class at the 3000 level or above



The following timeline is suggested for all SDM applicants (dates refer to the spring semester of the applicant's sophomore year):

  • February 1 - initial conception of SDM major
  • February 15 - make appointment with the Chair of the Curriculum Committee for the purpose of discussing the conception and obtaining application forms
  • March 1 - select an advisor for your proposed major, consult with advisor about the courses and faculty committee members appropriate for your program, select other members of your SDM faculty committee complete first draft of the Application in consultation with your advisor and committee members
  • March 15 - submit first draft of the Application to Chair of the Curriculum Committee for initial assessment, revise proposal as needed in consultation with Chair of Curriculum Committee and advisor of the major committee
  • April 1 - finalize Application, and submit completed Application to Chair of the Curriculum Committee for full, formal Curriculum Committee assessment
  • April 15 - receive approval, request for revision, or disapproval of the Application


Examples of Previous SDMs

  • Philosophy of Science and Medicine
  • International Health and Economics
  • Health Science and Human Services
  • Engineering Studies
  • Global Language Studies
  • Social Justice and the Americas
  • American Studies
  • International Social Development and Education
  • Environmental Studies