A meta-major is a framework used in postsecondary institutions in the United States for organizing related college degrees and certificates into a broad area of study with common introductory courses. Meta-majors are designed to help students quickly begin earning credits toward a degree or certificate and explore an area of interest—such as business, social and behavioral sciences, or health sciences—before committing to a specific program of study, such as accounting, sociology, or nursing. Meta-majors are a programmatic response to research that has found that too many academic options and a lack of structure inhibit student progress toward completing a degree or certificate.

The rationale behind meta-majors is that students will choose an area of interest early in their academic career, helping them to make informed ...

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