Sep 23, 2019  
2010-2011 Denver Campus Catalog 
2010-2011 Denver Campus Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Individually Structured Major

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Contact: CLAS Advising Office, North Classroom, 4002
Telephone: 303-556-2555
Web site:


The individually structured major (ISM) is an interdisciplinary major based on an individual contract rather than a preset list of courses. The flexibility of designing your own major affords liberal arts students an opportunity to pursue academic interests that cross traditional department or college boundaries. The ISM is attractive to students who have specific educational and career goals not satisfied with a traditional major or to students interested in a K–12 teaching career where breadth more than depth is valued to meet licensure requirements.

Students interested in the individually structured major work with faculty advisors in each discipline to create a program plan or contract to define the individually structured major. The ISM program plan must have an academic or career theme that ties course work together. Students are encouraged to complete the program plan before the end of the sophomore year.

Upon completion of graduation requirements, students in the individually structured major program will receive a diploma that will read “Bachelor of Arts, Individually Structured.” The University of Colorado transcript will read “Bachelor of Arts, Major: Individually Structured, Area:” (ISM title selected by student and approved as part of the ISM program plan).



Liberal arts students interested in graduating with Latin honors in the individually structured major program should meet with the assistant dean in the CLAS Advising Office to verify they meet eligibility requirements and to modify the program plan for the honors project. Students who successfully complete the ISM honors program will have the appropriate Latin honor designation placed on the University of Colorado diploma and transcript.

To participate in the ISM honors program, CLAS students must meet each of the following eligibility requirements:

  • have a declared ISM major with an approved ISM contract
  • possess a minimum 3.2 cumulative University of Colorado GPA
  • possess a minimum 3.5 GPA on all completed University of Colorado course work in the ISM contract

Eligible ISM students must complete an undergraduate research project and present the results to a faculty honors committee. The level of Latin honors awarded is determined by the faculty honors committee. ISM students are to complete 3 to 6 semester hours of undergraduate independent study over a period of two semesters in one of the disciplines that constitute the ISM contract. The faculty sponsor from the project discipline will serve as the honors committee chair. The independent study research project is to produce a thesis-quality report to be presented orally to a three-member interdisciplinary faculty honors committee representing the disciplines in the ISM contract. Upon completion of the research report and oral presentation to the honors committee, the level of Latin honors will be determined by the following criteria:

cum laude—awarded upon completion of written report and oral presentation

magna cum laude—awarded by honors committee based on successful written report and oral presentation

summa cum laude—awarded by honors committee based on excellence in written report and oral presentation


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