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Minors, options, and more

If you're interested in more than one subject at Waterloo, many programs allow you to combine areas of interest. Most minors and other specializations start in second year. 

Interested in math and music? Biology and geography? Chemistry and Spanish? There are many ways to combine interests and to make your Waterloo degree uniquely you.

If you meet the requirements for an option or minor, it becomes part of your degree. For example, you can earn a Bachelor of Arts in Honours Anthropology with a minor in Political Science. You can view each minor's requirements below.

What is a minor or option?

A minor is a group of 8-10 courses in a specific subject or topic which you would complete as part of the 40 or so courses for your degree. A minor can provide an additional focus to your degree. Minors are normally available to all students.

Options typically require fewer courses than a minor. Options are available only to students within their home faculty, e.g., options in the Faculty of Engineering are available only to students in Engineering. 

Minors and options available to all Waterloo students

Arts, humanities, social sciences


Cultures and languages


Fine and performing arts


Math and computer science

  • Mathematics (for students not in the Faculty of Mathematics)

Science and health


Other ways to customize your degree

These certificates and diplomas are open to all Waterloo students. Courses you take for your degree can often count toward a certificate, diploma, or option. In some programs, e.g., Engineering, you may need to take additional courses.


Language certificates


Double major or joint honours

In many programs, you can choose a double major or joint honours degree. This allows you to focus your studies on 2 main areas of interest. Of the 40 or so courses needed to earn your degree, most would be in your 2 majors.

A double major is 2 areas of interest within the same academic faculty while a joint honours involves subjects in different faculties, e.g., majoring in Anthropology (Faculty of Arts) and Biology (Faculty of Science).

These are generally not available in highly-structured programs such as Engineering, Architecture, Accounting and Financial Management, Computer Science, etc.

Learn more