Program types: Major, Honours, Liberal

McGill's Faculty of Science is very flexible: you can choose between a program that has more breadth or a program that has more depth.

What is a Major?

Your major is your versatile, comprehensive primary area of study. For example, you could pursue a Bachelor of Science degree with a major in Physics, Chemistry or Psychology, to name just three possibilities. The specific requirements vary from program to program, but majors frequently take up approximately two-thirds of your credits, up to 90 credits in some programs. (In Arts, a major is known as a "major concentration.")

What is Honours?

Honours programs typically involve an even higher degree of specialization than majors, include supervised research, and require students to maintain a high academic standard. An honours program provides solid preparation for graduate school.

What is a Minor?

A minor is an area of secondary concentration. You can pursue your minor within the Faculty of Science, or many other faculties, including Arts. (In Arts, a minor is known as a "minor concentration.") A minor allows you to explore a second area of interest, without requiring as many courses as a major program. Many minors are interdisciplinary, such as Geochemistry, Cognitive Science, or Natural History.

What are Joint Majors and Joint Honours programs?

These are programs that bring together related sciences. They are for students interested in working at the intersection of two major areas, rather than students with an interest in both areas (where a major and minor combination might be more appropriate).

What is the B.Sc. Liberal Program?

This is a flexible and modular program. You combine a core science component (CSC; less specialized than a Major) in one discipline with a breadth component which may consist of a minor in Science or in Arts, a major concentration from the Faculty of Arts, or a second CSC. Consider the Liberal program if you do not want to overly specialize - plus, you will still have room left over for elective courses.

Where can I find my choices for majors, honours, and liberal program?

Please see our programs of study page.

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