So You’ve Declared a Major. Now What?

Once you’ve declared a major, your next step is to integrate yourself into the department. What does that mean? It means get to know the people, and learn the opportunities available to you as a declared major student. How do you do this?

How to Integrate into Your New Department

Visit your Major Advisor. Unlike with your Pre-Major Advisor or Stanford Newcomer Guide, there are no holds that require you to meet with your Major Advisor. But if you don’t check in with them twice a year or so, you are wasting a golden opportunity to build a relationship with a faculty member.


Academically, declaration can also be a good moment to make a quarter-by-quarter plan to complete your major. Check the prerequisites for the courses in your academic plan, and check which quarter classes are offered, so that you don’t run into any roadblocks.


Keep an eye on the department email list for research jobs or funding opportunities, and attend talks and presentations that you will help you connect with faculty and see what other students are doing. Many departments will organize talks by their alumni so that you can get a sense of where people go after Stanford.