Designing an Area of Emphasis
Unlike other colleges, Evergreen doesn't offer majors or minors. Thus, there is no need to declare a major or fulfill major requirements.
However, students will often want to focus their studies in a particular area, and to be able to state that area of focus as the equivalent of a major (on resumes, graduate school applications, and so on).
At Evergreen, you have the option of designing your own area of emphasis, by taking a significant number of credits in a particular subject area.
How many credits are needed in a specific field in order to call it an emphasis?
There is no hard and fast cutoff. However, earning 45 or more credits in an academic discipline would be enough to justify calling it a Major Area of Emphasis. 32 credits in an academic discipline could be considered a Minor Area of Emphasis. These numbers were chosen because they reflect the average number of quarter credits you'd need for a typical major and minor at a more traditional college or university. To be appropriately prepared for some careers or graduate programs (e.g., health sciences) you might need more than 45 credits in preparatory coursework. Career Development can help you figure out what you'll need for your chosen path.
Am I allowed to choose the title of the emphasis?
Yes! At Evergreen, you can choose a traditional "major" title for your emphasis (for example, Psychology, Art, Environmental Studies) – or you can create a title that best reflects the specific content of your studies (for example, Media and Culture, Social Justice, Somatic and Consciousness Studies).
Does the area of emphasis appear on my degree or transcript?
No; your diploma will only say "Bachelor of Arts" or "Bachelor of Science," and your emphasis is not shown in your transcript. However, you can enter the title of your area of emphasis on resumes, graduate school applications, or any other documents that ask for your college major.
How do I get help with figuring out how my credits fit into a possible area of emphasis?
The Career Development Center can help you with this. Call them at 360-867-6193, or stop by their office at 2153 Library, to set up an intake appointment.
Keep in mind that even if you've taken 45 or more credits in a particular area, there may be specific course requirements to enter a career or pursue graduate studies in that field. For example, you could do a BA with an emphasis in Public Administration by taking 45+ credits in government, law, planning, public affairs, land use, etc. – but if you wanted to apply for a Masters degree in Public Affairs, or get a job with a government agency, the graduate program or employer will likely also require you to have taken economics, statistics, finance, and other specialized subjects. Be sure to talk with Career Development to make sure you're taking the right kinds of courses for your intended life/school path, as well as earning enough credits for your emphasis!