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Double Major Question

ktong777ktong777 123 replies54 threads Junior Member
Hey everyone! I'm a rising senior and I'm not sure what to put down for my major and alternate major since I plan on double majoring in Math and Computer Science.
I remember reading somewhere that UCLA doesn't really consider the alternate major, and that adding a second major that's impacted is impossible in most cases. Does that mean I have to apply for a Computer Science major in order to have any hopes of double majoring?
Also, does this apply for all other UCs as well?
edited July 13
9 replies
Post edited by CCAdmin_Vic on
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Replies to: Double Major Question

  • GumbymomGumbymom Forum Champion UC 30726 replies443 threads Forum Champion
    edited August 2019
    For the College of Letters and Science, the applicant's major is not considered during the review process. The Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science admits students by declared major, with more emphasis on science and math programs.

    If want to CS then you need to apply for CS as your first choice major. Switching into CS later could be unlikely. Alternate majors are not considered. You can declare Math later.
    edited August 2019
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  • ktong777ktong777 123 replies54 threads Junior Member
    @Gumbymom ok, thanks for letting me know!
    Do you happen to know if this is the same for all other UCs?
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  • GumbymomGumbymom Forum Champion UC 30726 replies443 threads Forum Champion
    Here are how the UC’s admit:
    UC admission by major:
    Division (L&S, CNR, CoC, CED, CoE) matters for admission selectivity.
    Within CoE (but not the other divisions), major matters for admission selectivity. Changing majors within the CoE after enrolling is not guaranteed, unless one is CoE undeclared.

    Note that L&S admits students as undeclared; admission to capped majors (e.g. CS, economics, psychology, ORMS, statistics, art practice, and a few others) is by college GPA in prerequisite courses (and portfolio for art practice) after attending for a few semesters.

    The business major is in a separate division and admits students in a competitive holistic process. Frosh intending business majors begin in another division (usually L&S), take the business major prerequisites, and apply (usually in their second years). They also need to take prerequisites for a backup major in case they are not admitted to the business major.

    All students who apply to UC Berkeley and select a major within the College of Natural Resources are evaluated based on their application, not on the particular major they select.

    Alternate majors not considered.

    Admission decisions are made based upon the qualifications of the applicant pool and the number of available spaces within each academic area:
    • College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences admits by college
    • College of Biological Sciences admits by college
    • College of Letters and Science admits by division within the college
    • (Humanities, Arts and Cultural Studies; Mathematics and Physical Sciences; Social Sciences)
    • College of Engineering admits by academic department
    Students applying as "undeclared" or "undeclared/exploratory" are considered within the college/division to which they applied.

    Applicants are encouraged to list an alternate major, but not in the
    same area as the primary major (e.g., Computer Science Engineering with alternate Computer Science in the College of L&S). Occasionally, we admit to the alternate major.

    * Freshman Selection:
    UCI admits into the University first and then into the major. In the case that UCI is unable to accommodate all qualified applicants in their first-choice major, those students who indicate a valid alternate major may be offered admission in that major or Undeclared.

    For the College of Letters and Science, the applicant's major is not considered during the review process.
    The Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science admits students by declared major, with more emphasis on science and math programs.
    The School of Nursing also places more emphasis on science and math programs and requires the submission of an additional supplemental application.
    The School of the Arts and Architecture; Herb Alpert School of Music; and the School of Theater, Film and Television admit students by declared major (within the school), and put more emphasis on special talents through a review of portfolios and/or auditions, which are the most significant admission factors for these schools.

    UCLA only guarantees review of an applicant’s first-choice major.
    We typically do not admit to the alternate major

    The campus does not admit students on the basis of academic major or choice of UC San Diego undergraduate college. Alternate majors are considered and capped majors are highly competitive. Also note: Capped majors require additional pre-req courses and specific GPA to be able to qualify if changing majors. Also if applying to a capped major, select an non-capped major as an alternate.

    College of Letters and Sciences: Choice of major is not considered in selection to the College of Letters and Science. The exceptions to this rule are dance and music performance majors. Both majors require applicants to complete an audition in late January or early February.

    College of Engineering: Students are selected by major for all engineering and computer science majors. Only applicants with a solid background in advanced high school mathematics will be considered for admission to engineering. This includes high grades in all math courses through grade 11 and enrollment in pre-calculus or higher in grade 12. A student not selected for their first choice major will be reviewed for admission to an alternate major outside of the College of Engineering if one was selected.

    College of Creative Studies:
    Applicants to the College of Creative Studies submit a supplementary application in addition to the general UC Application, which is reviewed by Creative Studies faculty. Students are selected within Creative Studies majors only. Applicants not selected for Creative Studies will automatically be considered for admission to the College of Letters and Science.

    Important Note for Prospective Engineering Students: Choice of major does not influence the selection of first-year students, except for those applicants interested in a major offered by the Jack Baskin School of Engineering (BSOE). Freshmen who are interested in a BSOE program should be sure to indicate a BSOE proposed major. Students who do not indicate a BSOE program or who apply as undeclared might not be able to pursue a BSOE program. 

    Admission by major but alternate/2nd choice major will be considered if applicant does not need their first choice admission standards.

    For Business: Freshmen students must apply to Pre-Business under the College of Humanities and Social Sciences (CHASS). The College breadth requirements and the prerequisites for a Business major are completed during the freshman and sophomore years. An application is submitted at the end of the sophomore year. Upon acceptance, students become Business majors and are then advised in the Business Department. Students from any academic major may also complete a Business minor.
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  • firmament2xfirmament2x 678 replies6 threads Member
    edited August 2019
    @ktong777 . . . UCLA also has a Specialization in Computing minor, which students will attach to their majors like Stats, Cog Science, Psych, Econ, or whatever. There's also a Computation of Mathematics major, although it doesn't appear to be as CS-heavy as the specialization. There are students who will get software positions without majoring in CS through the Engineering department by taking the specialization. Let me invoke our friend @10s4life who's a current EE major to look at what I wrote to check for accuracy.
    edited August 2019
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  • firmament2xfirmament2x 678 replies6 threads Member
    @ktong777 . . . let me add though, that the make-or-break attribute of your landing a coding job will be your internships and participating in hackathons, etc. I'm sure you'll need to demonstrably show that you can code whether you major in CS or by taking the side route.
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  • 10s4life10s4life Forum Champion UCLA 2509 replies53 threads Forum Champion
    OP, @firmament2x had good advice.
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  • firmament2xfirmament2x 678 replies6 threads Member
    Thanks @10s4life . . . Here's a link to the Math Majors at UCLA, though, I had the order mixed for Mathematics of Computation. It is more heavily CS-based than I thought. I also wanted to pull @ProfessorPlum168 into the conversation to see if the nascent Data Theory major in the link is comparable to what your son specialized in at Berkeley (as Data Science).
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  • ktong777ktong777 123 replies54 threads Junior Member
    @firmament2x @10s4life Awesome, thanks for the information! I'll definitely check Mathematics of Computation out.
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  • firmament2xfirmament2x 678 replies6 threads Member
    @ktong777 . . . be sure to compare and contrast majoring in straight Math (or Stats or Actuarial Math, etc.) and taking the Specialization in Computing program v. majoring in Mathematics of Computation. You might get more of what you want in the former; ask your counselor if you're accepted. Best of luck...
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