The University Academic Advising Discovery Program offers specialized advising for students who are still deciding about their programs of study, who are in transition between two majors or who have not yet declared a major. Discovery Program advisers help undeclared students consider educational options and make appropriate choices based on personal interests, skills and abilities, values, and professional goals.

Meta majors

Students enrolled in the undeclared major at VCU will select a “meta major” concentration until successful admission into a degree program. The meta major structure is designed to support students as they explore related major areas and provide a plan of study for the first academic year. The undeclared major is not a degree-granting program, so students cannot complete a degree in any of the “meta-major” concentrations. As students successfully complete courses and other admissions requirements, students and advisers will determine a time frame to apply for admission into a degree-granting program at VCU.

Undeclared – Arts

Students in the arts meta major are interested in pursuing a program offered through the VCU School of the Arts. These programs include: art education, art history, cinema, communication arts, craft and material studies, dance and choreography, fashion design, fashion merchandising, graphic design, interior design, kinetic imaging, music, painting and printmaking, photography and film, sculpture and extended media, and theatre.

Students in the arts meta major complete recommended courses in the first two semesters required for the School of the Arts, alongside the VCU Core Curriculum and general education program. The recommended courses serve as a guide to students for the best path toward graduation, in as timely a fashion as possible. If a student is still undecided after their first year, they should work closely with their academic adviser to create a customized plan of study for the second year. Students might choose to take additional courses over the summer to catch up or get ahead if the courses they need are offered.

All arts meta major applicants to the VCU School of the Arts must submit a change of major application online. This online application asks for personal and contact information, current and preferred curriculum, a personal statement, extracurricular activities, one to three recommenders’ emails and required supplemental materials (audition, essays, portfolio). Students can view the additional application requirements for their major of interest on the School of Arts website.

Undeclared – Humanities

Students in the humanities meta major are interested in pursuing a humanities-related program offered through VCU’s College of Humanities and Sciences. These programs include: English, foreign language, gender, sexuality and women’s studies, history, international studies, philosophy, and religious studies.

Students in the humanities meta major complete recommended courses in the first two semesters required for the VCU Core Curriculum alongside the general education program for the College of Humanities and Sciences. The recommended courses serve as a guide to students for the best path toward graduation, in as timely a fashion as possible. If a student is still undecided after their first year, they should work closely with their academic adviser to create a customized plan of study for the second year. Students might choose to take additional courses over the summer to catch up or get ahead if the courses they need are offered.

Undeclared – Social sciences

Students in the social sciences meta major are interested in pursuing a social science-related program offered at VCU. These programs include: African American studies, anthropology, criminal justice, economics*, education*, homeland security and emergency preparedness, mass communications*, political science, psychology, sociology, social work, and urban and regional studies.

Students in the social sciences meta major complete recommended courses in the first two semesters that include a foundation in social science as well as courses required for the VCU Core Curriculum and general education program. The recommended courses serve as a guide to students for the best path toward graduation, in as timely a fashion as possible. If a student is still undecided after their first year, they should work closely with their academic adviser to create a customized plan of study for the second year. Students might choose to take additional courses over the summer to catch up or get ahead if the courses they need are offered.

*Please consult with your adviser as these programs have unique requirements compared to others within the same meta major.

Undeclared – STEM

Students in the STEM meta major are interested in pursuing a science-, technology-, engineering- or math-related program offered at VCU. These programs include:biology, bioinformatics, biomedical engineering*, chemical and life science engineering*, chemistry, computer engineering*, computer science*, electrical engineering*, environmental studies, forensic science, health, physical education and exercise science, mathematical sciences, mechanical engineering*, physics, interdisciplinary science, secondary education and teaching with a concentration in engineering, and statistics.

Students in the STEM meta major complete recommended courses in the first two semesters that include math and science foundations as well as courses required for the VCU Core Curriculum and general education program. The recommended courses serve as a guide to students for the best path toward graduation, in as timely a fashion as possible. If a student is still undecided after their first year, they should work closely with their academic adviser to create a customized plan of study for the second year. Students might choose to take additional courses over the summer to catch up or get ahead if the courses they need are offered.

*Please consult with your adviser as these programs have unique requirements compared to others within the same meta major.

Undeclared – Discovery

Students in the discovery meta major are interested in a multitude of programs at VCU and should work closely with their academic adviser to decide on their path of study.

Students in the discovery meta major complete recommended courses in the first two semesters that include courses required for the VCU Core Curriculum and general education program. The recommended courses serve as a guide to students for the best path toward graduation, in as timely a fashion as possible. If a student is still undecided after their first year, they should work closely with their academic adviser to create a customized plan of study for the second year. Students might choose to take additional courses over the summer to catch up or get ahead if the courses they need are offered.

Specialized programs

The programs below are highly specialized and include additional major and entrance requirements and thus are not included in the meta major options.

Pre-health majors

Pre-health major in clinical laboratory science
Pre-health major in dental hygiene
Pre-health major in nursing
Pre-health major in clinical radiation sciences

Business foundation (departments)

Accounting
Economics
Finance, Insurance and Real Estate (including financial technology program)
Information Systems
Management and Entrepreneurship
Marketing
Supply Chain Management

Academic advising

Discovery Program advisers offer a blend of individual and group counseling sessions and workshops to assist students who have not yet declared a major or who are being transitioned out of competitive standing programs. Advisers assist all undeclared students with monitoring their academic progress, course scheduling, interpreting university regulations and procedures and maximizing their academic success. In addition, each semester the Discovery Program offers UNIV 103, a class that concentrates on careers, educational opportunities and the development of student potential. Advisers also provide alternative advising options for students who do not qualify for, or are not admissible to, their preferred programs of study. By considering alternatives, students will uncover options that they can find personally, educationally and professionally fulfilling.

Students must declare majors within one of the university’s schools or colleges no later than the semester in which they complete 60 credits.

Changing to undeclared from another major

Students planning to transition to an undeclared major should complete the online Change of Major Form.

For more information on advising programs, visit the UAA website or call (804) 827-8648.