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Student Initiated Interdepartmental Major

Contact Person:
Consult the Associate Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences in Dunn 103, (315) 267-2230.

30-42 credit hours required.

SIIM proposals must be developed by the student in consultation with the Chair of the SIIM Committee and with faculty members chosen by the student to be their advisors. The faculty advisors are responsible
for developing the plan of study with the student and supervising the student’s progress and successful completion of a SIIM.

It is highly recommended that SIIM proposals be submitted no sooner than the second semester of a student’s freshman year. Before submission, the student should have at least two faculty advisors, each of whom represent the different departments or disciplines from which the proposed academic courses will be taken, and with whom the SIIM proposal has been thoroughly discussed and planned prior to its submission.

A SIIM program of study may be approved and started by students of junior or senior academic standing (>60 credits) with the explicit understanding that a SIIM degree consists of 30-42 credits of coursework, with no more than eight (8) credits of previous coursework allowed to be included in the SIIM program of study.

SIIM proposals will be accepted for review during fall semester until November 15 and during spring semester until April 15. Admission to the SIIM requires approval of the proposed program of study by the Committee, based upon the program’s quality and the student’s ability to carry it out.

The complete SIIM proposal will include:

  1. SIIM application form
  2. The proposed program of study (a discussion of the anticipated interdisciplinary area of study and a list of courses that the student intends to complete, including prerequisites and cognate requirements)
  3. A written statement justifying the program of study
  4. Current college transcript
  5. Any additional documentation the student wishes to submit in support of the proposal
  6. Evidence that the student has consulted with faculty from all departments involved, and
  7. Letters of support from each of the student’s advisors.

Academic Requirements

  • Each SIIM program of study must include 30 to 42 credit hours, at least 75% of which must carry liberal arts credit. Required cognate courses are not included in the 30-42 required credit hours.
  • All courses listed and approved in the SIIM must be completed with a grade of 2.0 or better, or for those courses taken with the S/U grade option (two courses maximum; additional S/U courses need SIIM committee and academic advisor approval) an “S” must be earned;
  • A minimum of 15 credit hours of upper-division (300 and 400 level) courses must be included from at least two academic departments or disciplines;
  • Each SIIM must include a seminar or specially directed tutorial study which reflects the student’s interdepartmental interests, and will be included in the required 30-42 credit hours of the SIIM;
  • All cognate courses for the SIIM must be specified in the program of study and cannot exceed 16 credit hours. All cognate courses must be completed with a grade of 2.0 or better;
  • If a class substitution is desired in an already approved SIIM program of study, the student should submit a written explanation and justification of the substitution, approved by the students’ SIIM adviser, to the SIIM committee for approval.