Academic Programs

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Who is this for?

Students currently enrolled in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences (Harvard College, GSAS, SEAS)

Harvard College Academic Programs

Harvard College offers several options for you to pursue your academic goals. 

Concentrations

You can choose from 50 undergraduate fields of study (concentrations). You will be asked to declare a concentration during the first semester of your sophomore year.

To declare a concentration:

  1. Consult the Fields of Concentration, which provides information for each concentration, along with required courses, tutorials, and thesis information. 
  2. Meet with a representative from your intended concentration. Your representative will review your Declaration of Concentration and your Plan of Study.
  3. Formally declare your concentration in my.harvard. If you have any questions about this process, contact your sophomore adviser, Resident Dean, or Academic Coordinator

Joint Concentrations

A joint concentration integrates two undergraduate concentrations into a coherent field of study. You will typically be required to write an interdisciplinary thesis while only enrolled in one concentration's thesis tutorial. 

  • Not all concentrations participate in joint concentration programs. Please consult the Fields of Concentration for specific joint concentration information and requirements for your desired field of study. If you have questions, ask your Head Tutor or Director of Undergraduate Study for more information.
  • When declaring a joint concentration, you will designate one of the concentrations as your primary concentration and one as the allied concentration. Both participating concentrations must be satisfied with the coherence and merit of your plan and be prepared to supervise your program in detail.  
  • If you don’t want to integrate the work of two separate fields into one coherent program, but still wish to pursue a second disciplinary area, you may want to consider a secondary field

Double Concentrations

The double concentration facilitates in-depth, structured coursework in two separate concentrations. The coursework in these two fields may not substantially overlap with each other. To declare a double concentration, please complete the Declaration of Double Concentration form

  • A limit of 8 credits (generally 2 courses) may be double counted between the two concentrations.
  • You may apply to write theses in both concentrations.
  • You may receive honors in only one concentration which must be designated as the honors field on the declaration form.  
  • You do not need approval from both concentrations to declare a double concentration. Each concentration will review and approve declaration separately. 
  • By the end of your third term, you must declare at least one concentration, and you may declare a double concentration. You can declare your honors field by the end of the following term (before the deadline for fall pre-registration), leaving time to benefit from advising in both concentrations. 
  Joint Concentration Double Concentration
Approval Requires joint approval of both concentrations.  Each concentration is approved separately. 
Credit Limits Please consult the Fields of Concentration for credit requirements and policies.  A limit of 8 credits may be double counted between the two concentrations. 
Thesis? Required. Must be relevant in both fields but will only enroll in a thesis course in one concentration.  May choose to apply to write a thesis in both or either concentration. Only eligible for honors in one concentration. 
Participating Concentrations Please consult the Fields of Concentration for eligible programs.  All concentrations may be part of a double concentration. 

Other Academic Opportunities

Secondary Fields

Secondary fields can provide the opportunity for focused study (four to six courses) outside of your primary area of concentration, but they are entirely optional and are not required for graduation. A secondary field may complement your primary area of study, or it may be entirely separate. 

  • No integrative work between your secondary field and your primary concentration is required. 
  • Your secondary field will be noted on your transcript.
  • You cannot receive credit for more than one secondary field.
  • Only one course (4 credits) may count simultaneously toward a secondary field and your concentration.
  • You cannot sign up for a secondary field before declaring a concentration.
  • You are responsible for notifying secondary fields of your interest in the program, for tracking your requirements, and for submitting a completed Secondary Field request via my.harvard no later than the deadline.

Foreign Language Citations

  • Many of the language, literature, and civilization departments offer citations to non-concentrators in a modern or ancient language. Foreign language citations will be noted on the your transcript at the time degrees are voted.
  • Each language citation program consists of four courses (4 credits per course or equivalent) of language instruction beyond the first-year level and/or courses taught primarily in the foreign language.  
  • At least two of these courses must be at the third-year level or beyond.  
  • Appropriate courses taken in approved programs of study out of residence for which your receive degree credit may be counted toward a citation.  
  • Courses that satisfy the requirements for a citation may also be counted toward the distribution requirement, Secondary Field, and/or concentration requirements, as appropriate.
  • A certificate will be printed and included with your diploma.
  • For a complete list of language citations offered and the specific requirements for each, please consult Fields of Concentration.

Concurrent Master's

Harvard College students can apply to the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences for a master's degree pursued concurrently with the bachelor's degree. If you are admitted to the concurrent degree program, you will be allowed to double-count up to sixteen credits towards your Bachelor of Arts and either the Master of Arts or the Master of Science. You must submit the Course Allocation Form to the FAS Registrar's Office at enrollment@fas.harvad.edu by the fifth Monday of your 8th term.

For more information visit the OUE Concurrent Master's webpage and Harvard College Student Handbook. If you have any specific questions regarding the Concurrent Master's program, please contact the Office of Undergraduate Education at academicpolicy@fas.harvard.edu

You can track your degree requirements using the Academic Advisement Report. We recommend that you discuss your program requirements with the department.

 

Advanced Standing/Fourth Year Master's

Advanced Standing students admitted to a fourth-year master's degree must submit the Bracketing Form to the FAS Registrar's Office at enrollment@fas.harvad.edu by the fifth Monday of the term.

For more information visit the OUE Advanced Standing webpage and Harvard College Student Handbook. If you have any specific questions regarding the Advanced Standing program, please contact the Office of Undergraduate Education at academicpolicy@fas.harvard.edu.

You can track your degree requirements using the Academic Advisement Report. We recommend that you discuss your program requirements with the department.

GSAS Academic Programs

GSAS offers a number of opportunities for study. Please review the GSAS Polices for more information on:

Secondary Fields

Secondary fields allow PhD students to broaden their course of study and enhance the competitiveness and professional reach of their degree programs (the secondary field appears on the student transcript but not on the diploma). 

Related Forms

Need Assistance?

Academic Programs Support

Email: your sophomore adviser, Resident Dean, or Academic Coordinator

  • for questions about declaring a concentration

Email: your Head Tutor or Director of Undergraduate Study

  • for questions about joint concentration requirements

Email: academicpolicy@fas.harvard.edu

  • for questions regarding the Concurrent Master's program
  • for questions regarding the Advanced Standing/Fourth Year Master's program

Emailmyharvard_support@harvard.edu

  • for technical issues with my.harvard