Understanding majors and minors

So many choices … so many opportunities to be unique!        

Kyrie wearing an orange beyond ideas University of Waterloo buttonWhen I began looking into university programs, I realized that I was unfamiliar with what a major or minor was, or even the process of declaring a major. A major is not a single class you devote most of your time and attention to each term and a minor is not a single class that is a less intense version of a major. After further research, a major is a group of courses within one subject area that is the main focus of your university program. If I were to major in Theatre and Performance in Honours Arts and Business or Honours Arts, almost half of my undergraduate program will require me to take courses in this subject. A minor is typically a group of eight courses within a subject area that is the secondary focus of your university program, for example, I could take technical writing as my minor. If I were to enroll in the University of Waterloo's Honours Arts and Business program, I would pursue a major in English, specializing in literature and rhetoric, and minor in Theatre and Performance. I do not need to declare my major till the end of my first year of study, but that is not true for every program. As for a minor, I do not have to declare it at all unless you want it noted in your diploma. If I were to enroll in Accounting and Financial Management (AFM) my majors are already predetermined as I would be working towards my bachelor's degree in Accounting and Financial Management (BAFM). However, if I were to go into AFM, I would not add a minor because the AFM program is like a double major in both accounting and finance, so I wouldn’t have time to focus on another subject. Check out the university's website to learn more about majors and minors available for the different programs a university offers.


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