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Admission to the ISF Major is not automatic.  In order to be considered, the student must first contact the Student Academic Advisor who will direct the student to an ISF faculty adviser. The ISF Application, also found below, allows the student to develop in 750 words her/his Research Program. Applications to the major must be submitted to an ISF faculty adviser in person or via email. The applications are then reviewed by the ISF faculty. Students should expect a two week turnaround time on application processing. 


Applications to the major may be submitted via email to ISF faculty advisors AFTER the student research project has been reviewed approved by an ISF faculty advisor (Bhandari, Kelkar, Quamruzzaman, or Xu). Drop-in advising hours for ISF faculty advisers are posted online at

The deadline to submit an application to declare the major is the final day of classes, after the student has had their research program approved by an ISF faculty advisor (Bhandari, Kelkar, Quamruzzaman or Xu). Please do not wait till the last day of classes to submit your application, as the faculty advisors need ample time to review the application.

Be advised that students are required to be declared in a major by the beginning of their junior year. The College places registration holds on students who are undeclared at 90 units, including units in progress as well as transfer units, but excluding deductible exam units such as AP/IB units. As such, early application to the major is highly encouraged to avoid eventual registration blocks.

Students who have senior standing (more than 90 units, excluding AP credit) will not be allowed to apply to the major unless they are changing their major or pursuing a double major. Final acceptance into the major will be contingent on being able to finish the ISF major within L&S change of major and double major guidelines. Note that the 90-unit maximum does not take into account in-progress units at the time of application.

As part of the application process, students must prepare a statement describing their proposed Research Program (described in the Student Handbook) and a tentative list of courses for the Course of Study. With the counsel of the Student Academic Adviser and faculty adviser, ISF majors fill out a worksheet to plan their Research Program. The worksheet sets up an effective program for completion of the major and other college/campus requirements while allowing room for participation in such enrichment opportunities as education abroad, research, field work, or completion of a minor. Students, including those transferring from other institutions, are encouraged to fulfill prerequisites and to apply to the ISF major by the end of the first semester of their junior year.