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What Makes a Good IMP Idea?

The Individualized Major Program (IMP) has been discontinued as of January 2018 and no additional students will be able to declare an IMP major.

In the 1969-1970 Course Bulletin for the College of Literature, Science and the Arts, the IMP (nèe ICP) was described as follows:

This is our constitutional language. Times have changed, “concentrations” are now “majors,” but what remains the same is the requirement of a “special academic interest.”

Do you have a special academic interest?

Do you have an academic curiosity or are you seeking a career?

An IMP cannot focus on career preparation; however, to optimize your education toward your career goals, explore these options:

Can you clearly articulate what you want to learn about?

  • Your IMP should have should have a broad but coherent academic focus. What are the three questions that best summarize your interests?
  • The goal of an IMP must be to learn about something, not how to do something. What is your learning goal?

  • The IMP is very much a LSA major. Only 6 non-LSA credits are permitted in the proposed curriculum of 34 upper-level credits.

Have you spoken with advisors and faculty about these ideas?

Crafting an IMP proposal is not a solo effort:

  • Meet with advisors in disciplines or departments relative to your exploration. Do they believe your academic interests should be explored in an individualized major? What faculty would they recommend?

  • Seek out LSA faculty who will support your IMP and write a strong recommendation.


To assist you in determining if your idea is alligned with the goals of the IMP program, please go through the IMP idea flowchart.