Change of Major

Theatre Arts

Step 1 – Requesting a Change of Major

  • Meet with your current department advisor to review major options and talk about career paths. Consider, also, consulting with Career Services, other advisors, and faculty and/or department heads/chairs in both your current major and theatre.
  • Meet with the theatre program chair/associate chair to determine the likelihood of success in the theatre major; what is your commitment to the discipline as well as your career aspirations? How do you see yourself being a successful member of the theatre program?
  • Review the curriculum requirements for the theatre major.
  • Enlist a faculty "sponsor" who will help guide students in the change of major process.
  • Write a two-page essay describing why you wish to change into theatre arts at Cal Poly and your projected professional goals as related to a theatre education. Student essays will be submitted to faculty sponsor and then presented to the faculty. The essay itself will be evaluated by the quality of written expression — including clarity, organization, precision of thought, grammar, punctuation, spelling and syntax as well as evidence of your commitment to the discipline and your potential for success in both major and post-graduation activities.
  • After consideration from the full faculty, if the theatre major is not a good fit for the student, the student will be advised to look at other options.
  • If the student receives a positive assessment, then an Individualized Change of Major Agreement (ICMA) (see below) will be developed.

Step 2 –  Individualized Change of Major Agreement (ICMA) Criteria

  • Minimum time - Students must complete at least one quarter at Cal Poly before requesting a change of major.
  • Theatre classes - Students must take/have taken TH210 and two additional Cal Poly Theatre Program academic or production courses.
  • Minimum theatre grades - Students must earn/have earned an average grade of B or higher in TH210 and the additional theatre program academic or production courses.
  • Good academic standing - Students must have a cumulative Cal Poly GPA of at least 2.2 and be in good academic standing.
  • Graduate on-time - Students must be able to demonstrate, in writing, the ability to complete degree requirements within the minimum progress standards (204 units or four years plus one academic quarter).

Step 3 – Complete Individualized Change of Major Agreement (ICMA)

  • The change of major will be complete once a student has successfully met all of the criteria (see above) of the Individualized Change of Major Agreement (ICMA)

General Guidelines/Information

  • One chance to be accepted - Students who enter into an Individualized Change of Major Agreement (ICMA) and do not complete the ICMA requirements will not be eligible to request the theatre major again later in their career at Cal Poly. In this event, students are advised to consider pursuing a theatre minor.
  • Completion of Change of Major - The change of major will be approved once the student has successfully met all of the requirements of the ICMA.
  • Timeframe - The ICMA must be completed in no more than two quarters.
  • Void - the ICMA will be terminated if a student is academically disqualified prior to the completion of the agreement.

The above policy also applies to students wishing to add the theatre arts major as a second major.

Department Contact: Josh Machamer, Department Chair, 805-756-1465

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