Hey there! Sign in to join this conversationNew here? Join for free
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    Hi,

    I'm just wondering what the impact of Double Major US vs Degree UK is?
    In comparison to the Major-Minor US which is the traditional path, does a double major make your degree worth 'slightly' more or in other words more weighting?
    Could someone clear up what effect/impact this has in comparison to Major-Minor (standard path) as I don't think it's equal to a degree in the UK (undergrad) as otherwise a Major-Minor would then be considered weaker.

    I realise that there's more to it as it's a more rounded education and other factors play a role, but concentrating on the effect of Double Majors in comparison to a UK degree.

    As an example (taking majors from MIT here):
    Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (1 Major) and Physics (1 Major)
    versus (Electrical) Engineering at a UK Degree

    Also, what effect does a pure major have compared to a mixed degree?
    (Like Mathematics or Mathematics and Computer Science, do you learn less maths in the second one because some of the time is used for CS, or is it additional learning, which means more weighting in comparison to just pure maths?)

    I know it sounds confusing, but bear with me here as it's the best way I could explain.
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    When you double major, you have to fulfill the full requirements for both majors. The difference between taking a single major and double-majoring is that with the latter, you'll have less opportunity to take electives (besides from the electives required for your majors).
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by SaintSaens)
    When you double major, you have to fulfill the full requirements for both majors. The difference between taking a single major and double-majoring is that with the latter, you'll have less opportunity to take electives (besides from the electives required for your majors).
    This. :yep:
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    Doing a double major doesn't necessarily give your degree more credibility. It's worth noting that majors have a minimum requirement for the number of classes you need to take in the department (or related departments), but you're free to take more if you wish. If you want to attend graduate school (a PhD program) in a subject after your undergraduate years, it's often a good idea to go beyond the minimum requirements of your major. This is what will make your degree more credible to graduate school admissions people.

    I don't even think a double major is a great advantage if you want a job straight after you graduate. In this case, extra-curricular activities play a significant role in addition to academic achievements.

    I wouldn't necessarily call the major-minor path "standard". At my university (Harvard), I don't know too many people who are doing minors (or secondary fields as we call them). From my experience people take classes that they're interested in and sometimes people happen to have taken enough classes for a minor in a particular department.

    If you do a joint major - like Mathematics and Computer Science, as you mentioned - you'll have to take some required classes in each department. In the above example, you won't have to take as many mathematics classes as a mathematics major and you won't have to take as many computer science classes as a computer science major. Of course, you are free to use electives to take more classes in either department if you wish.

    One thing that you might want to consider when thinking about joint or double majors is how easy it will be to write a thesis. Most American universities require students to write a thesis to graduate with honours. Students completing joint or double majors often have to write a thesis that combines the two subjects. This takes some planning and can prove challenging.

    Hope that helps! You might also be interested in a short article I wrote about academics at American universities.
 
 
 
  • See more of what you like on The Student Room

    You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

  • Poll
    Did TEF Bronze Award affect your UCAS choices?
  • See more of what you like on The Student Room

    You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

  • The Student Room, Get Revising and Marked by Teachers are trading names of The Student Room Group Ltd.

    Register Number: 04666380 (England and Wales), VAT No. 806 8067 22 Registered Office: International House, Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XE

    Quick reply
    Reputation gems: You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.