Division II is all about deep inquiry into your own interests. Now that you know how studies can be connected, you have freedom to pursue what you’re passionate about. Choose two or three professors to serve as your advising committee. They’ll give you advice about classes to take, internships, studying abroad, and other opportunities to fuel your intellect and activate your inquiries. Though there’s still room to explore, you’re now set on answering the questions that drive you.
Students explore their chosen field(s) of emphasis (the concentration) through an individually designed program of courses, independent work, and internships or field studies. Students work closely with a faculty committee to design and carry out a personalized concentration of study.
The concentration is an area of learning that the student pursues in greater depth according to their individual interests and needs. In Div II, each student designs and carries out a concentration with the guidance and supervision of a committee of faculty selected by the student for this purpose.
A concentration may range from a plan of study similar to that of a traditional college major to a highly individualized program of study that encompasses several disciplines or areas of conceptual thought and understanding. It may include a number of kinds of learning activities: independent studies and projects, courses, reading programs, internships, and other forms of field study away from the campus.
In addition to carrying out the work defined by the Division II contract, every Hampshire student must complete two academic requirements prior to completing Division II work: Multiple Cultural Perspectives and Community Engagement and Learning (CEL-2).
Within the limits of the resources of the college, the Five Colleges, and the ability of the student and the student's committee to locate resources for the student, there is great latitude in the design of a concentration. It is essential, however, that a concentration proceed on the basis of a plan, that it be a coherent body of studies, and that it build from work at foundational levels to advanced work.
The concentration is not the whole of a student's work in Division II; additional studies outside the area of concentration are also an important part. Along with the concentration, the student is expected to pursue academic interests in areas unrelated to the concentration, much as a student at a traditional college would engage interests outside the major. Because these additional studies need not meet the criteria for a concentration (coherence and building), this feature gives the Division II student an added measure of flexibility and freedom in designing a course of study.
Print out this roadmap to the divisional process (pdf).