Complement your major by pursuing a minor or certificate in an additional area or field. Minors and certificates provide you with an outstanding opportunity to pursue structured studies in interdisciplinary fields of interest. Students in the Classes of 2025 and beyond can pursue up to two (2) minors/certificates. If you want to pursue more than two, you must petition to your assistant dean for studies or dean and demonstrate the importance of the minor to your course of study. Is Getting a Minor or Certificate Right for You? Pursue a certificate or minor if you feel it will enrich your academic experience and teach you valuable skills, not because you feel that you must. Recent data suggests that about 60% of students choose to get one or more certificates, but that leaves 40% who didn't pursue one. Advantages There are many compelling reasons to pursue a certificate or minor: Complement your major: Build bridges with other disciplines/geographical areas or cultivating additional skills and knowledge. Engage more deeply: The requirements will structure a deep and comprehensive engagement with the subject. Find support: You will have the support of a program’s resources and a community of faculty mentors and peers to help you explore your interest. Considerations Time: Do you have enough time (between other classes and extracurricular commitments) to meet the requirements for the minor/certificate? Workload: Are you able to commit to independent work in your major as well as any additional independent work your minor/certificate might require? An alternative approach: Might you want to explore a subject through additional coursework rather than taking on the additional requirements of the minor/coursework? Weigh Your Options Work with your advisers All faculty advisers are experienced sounding boards who know about a range of disciplines and departments. As they get to know you, they can help you figure out whether getting a certificate or minor is the right choice. Departmental directors of undergraduate studies are experts on their department’s major curriculum and requirements, and can guide you through their programs. Your residential college dean and assistant dean for studies are available to talk to you about whether choosing a certificate or minor is right for you. Attend the Academic Expo and Open Houses Certificate and minor programs are represented at the Academic Expo for new students during Orientation; some programs hold additional open houses during the academic year. Admission and Requirements Unlike majors—which are mandatory in both B.S.E. and A.B. degrees and selected at standard times—minors and certificates are optional. Each program sets its own deadlines for admission, which can happen as early as spring of sophomore year and may include prerequisites or an application process. Some programs, such as Finance or Global Health and Health Policy, require you to apply at the end of sophomore year. Others offer more flexible deadlines. Many require independent work in senior year as well as coursework, so it is almost always necessary to apply before the beginning of senior year. Requirements vary widely, so consult the Undergraduate Announcement, program website, and program directors for specifics. Minors vs. Certificates: What’s the difference? Minors are new to Princeton and will be offered starting in academic year 2023-24. Functionally, there will be no difference between minors and certificates. We anticipate that current certificates will be converted to minors in the next few years, and that some departments will now elect to create a minor under the auspices of this new program Previously, academic departments (those fields in which students can major) could not propose a certificate, because certificates were generally limited to interdisciplinary programs that exist between and beyond the structures of academic departments. Under these revisions, however, academic departments can now elect to propose a minor in their respective fields. Additional Resources Majors & Minors Explore majors and minors offered across 36 departments in the humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, and engineering.