Amherst offers the Bachelor of Arts degree in 38 majors in the arts, sciences, social sciences and humanities. Students can carry more than one major, create their own interdisciplinary major or engage in independent scholarship. Many students delve more deeply into their major field by undertaking honors theses as seniors. Often the equivalent of graduate-level work, theses have taken the form of a major paper, scientific investigation or creative work. Departmental and program majors are offered in the following areas:
Academic Department Majors
- American Studies
- Anthropology and Sociology* †
- Art and the History of Art
- Asian Languages and Civilizations
- Black Studies
- Computer Science
- Law, Jurisprudence, and Social Thought
- Mathematics and Statistics*
- Physics and Astronomy*
- Political Science
- Sexuality, Women’s and Gender Studies
- Theater and Dance
*Separate majors within a single department.
**The Classics department offers three majors: Greek, Latin and Classics.
†A student may petition to become an Anthropology-Sociology major.
- Architectural Studies
- Biochemistry and Biophysics
- Environmental Studies
- European Studies
- Film and Media Studies
Five College Department Majors
After submitting a formal proposal and obtaining faculty approval, a student may construct an interdisciplinary major.
With faculty approval, a limited number of students may participate in the Independent Scholar Program, usually in the junior or senior year, in lieu of a traditional major program. Independent Scholars plan a personal program of study under the direction of a tutor. Students must be nominated for the program by a member of the faculty.
Other Courses and Programs
Amherst does not offer a major in creative writing, but the Creative Writing Center, in conjunction with various departments, provides courses in the writing of fiction, poetry, plays, non-fictional prose and translation.
Amherst participates in a variety of Five College programs, including 11 certificate programs, supervised independent and mentored language programs, and two shared departments.