Office of Student Affairs
Your major is your primary area of study. Undergraduate students in CHS must be admitted to one of the majors on the page linked above to earn a baccalaureate degree. Please note: Admission to major is separate from admission to UWM. Students typically apply for formal admission to a major after completion of one or more semester(s) of coursework.
A minor is like a “mini-major,” a grouping of classes around a specific subject matter, typically between 18-30 credits. A minor must be combined with a major/degree program. A minor is noted on your official UWM transcript and adds another layer of professional knowledge to your degree, enhancing your résumé and prospects in today's competitive job market.
A certificate is like a “mini-minor,” a concentrated set of classes grouped around a particular subject matter, typically between 15-21 credits. It can be combined with a major/degree program, and some are available as a stand-alone option for individuals, including working professionals, wishing to expand their knowledge in a particular subject area. A certificate is noted on your official UWM transcript and adds an additional dimension of knowledge to your academic record and professional résumé.
Many CHS students want to work in a career field in healthcare, but they are unsure as to what specifically they would like to pursue. Being undecided about your major when you come to UWM is perfectly okay and quite common among first year students. As a student in CHS, you will have a dedicated academic advisor as you explore careers that will provide resources to keep you on the right path. We want you to match the skills you have and are developing with a career in your field of interest.
CHS has several distinct majors, and our goal is to help you identity a major within the first 24 credit hours you earn at UWM (typically the first year). Many of our majors are very prescriptive, meaning they have unique individual and class requirements. Students should consult with their advisor about enrolling in classes every semester to make sure as many credits as possible are working towards one or more CHS major(s).
Consult with your advisor each semester about any changes you plan to make and how your major exploration is going. In addition, keep these thoughts in mind as a CHS undecided student:
- You are responsible for gaining knowledge of the majors that interest you. Take time to talk with students and faculty within those majors about what is expected of you, or shadow a professional within your field of interest. Understand the academic and grade requirements of each major.
- Visit the Career Development Center. The CDC will talk with you about your personal traits and strengths and try to match those with appropriate careers. They also provide courses and workshops that will not only help you prepare for a major but also help prepare for a career. Counselors routinely help students understand majors and how to gain work experience within your major.
- If you decide on a major within CHS, contact our reception office to schedule an appointment with the advisor of that program.
We understand that some students will choose a major that is outside the College of Health Sciences. If you decide on a major elsewhere at UWM, you should contact the academic advisor affiliated with the major, school, or college of your choice. They will assist you in a major change and provide further guidance.
Students who wish to complete a CHS major as they pursue admission to graduate/professional school for further study in any of the following areas may receive advising for their undergraduate major and graduate/professional school preparation solely from their CHS advisor:
- communication sciences and disorders
- health care informatics
- occupational therapy
- physical therapy
Please note: "Pre-Physical Therapy" and similar graduate/professional school preparation designations are not majors. Students must declare one of the CHS majors listed on the page linked above to pair with their "pre" designation.
Students who wish to complete a CHS major while pursuing admission to a professional school for any of the following subjects receive joint advising from the College of Health Sciences (for their undergraduate major) and the College of Letters & Science (for professional school preparation):
- veterinary medicine
- physician assistant
CLICK HERE to learn more about these pre-health paths at UWM.
Please note: "Pre-Med" and similar professional school preparation designations are not majors. Students must declare one of the CHS majors listed on the page linked above to pair with their "pre" designation.