Declaring an IR major

Why IR? There are several ways to study international relations at W&M.  IR may be the right major for you if you wish to think globally, you find that an interdisciplinary approach best reflects your diverse international interests, you are policy focused, and you thrive on the multiple demands and skills required.

When?  You may declare your major once you have earned 39 credits, and must do so by the time you have 54 credits.  In general, this is likely to happen during your sophomore year.  Don’t wait until you declare, though, to think about meeting major requirements.  Meet with your advisor (or seek advice) early and often.

How?  You are responsible for approaching a professor about becoming your major advisor.  It could be that your freshman advisor is part of the IR faculty and that you would like to continue with him/her.  You may ask a full time professor who is part of the IR faculty (consult the faculty directory for info) and with whom you have had a class.  You may approach a full time professor who shares your particular substantive interests even if you haven’t had a class with him/her.  Or you may contact the IR advising director, Prof Smith at [[dasmi2]], to get your forms filled out.   In all cases, you should set up an appointment, print out the Declaration of Major form, fill out the first page (requirements and GERs), and think about what else you would like to take.  Bring the Declaration of Major form to your appointment; it will save time and facilitate conversation.

For one reason or another you may find that you need to change your advisor.  This is easily accomplished by filing the Change of Advisor form.  You will need to get the approval, and signature, of your new advisor.  This form is not necessary to change from your freshman advisor to your major advisor.  That process is automatic.