Change of major, minor or specialisation
Most degrees at MQ require at least one major. This is known as your qualifying major and is necessary to successfully complete your degree. Any additional major/s you nominate are referred to as a further major.
A double degree may require two qualifying majors. Please note that not all degrees require completion of a major/minor and you will not be able to include a major/minor if your degree does not permit this. To check whether you need to complete a major/minor/stream/specialisation for your degree, please refer to the handbook for the year you commenced your degree or seek Program Advice.
What is a qualifying major?
A qualifying major is a structured sequence of units that focuses on an area of study that you want to achieve within your Bachelor degree. Your qualifying major will provide you with specialised knowledge in a particular subject area.
For degrees that allow the completion of a major, you will usually need to complete a minimum of 24 credit points (or 8 units). Some majors will require further units to be completed.
If your degree requires completion of a qualifying major, this should be chosen from the available list of qualifying majors listed in the handbook for the year you commenced your degree. For example, if you commenced your degree in 2016, please refer to the 2016 online handbook.
Note: Only one qualifying major is permitted (with the exception of double degrees). If you wish to complete an additional major/s, please request this as a further major via the Change of Major form.
What is a further major?
A further major (or secondary major) is not essential for your degree however may be beneficial if you have additional interests outside your admitted degree. If you wish to change a further major you can do this at any time by submitting a Change of Major form.
Please note that your further major will be added from the year that you request to add the major. For example: If you request to add English as a further major in 2019, then the 2019 version of the English major will be added.
Note: A further major can be any major currently offered at Macquarie University and listed in the Schedule of Majors for the current year. If the major you wish to add is not available in the Schedule of Majors, it cannot be added to your degree.
What is a minor?
A minor is similar to a major except that it contains half the requirements of a major. A minor can be completed in addition to your major/s and should represent a secondary interest.
Your completed minor will be recorded on your academic transcript but not on your testamur when you graduate.
- A candidate may not qualify for a major and a minor with the same name, or for two majors with the same name.
- Minors will not be displayed as its own separate structure in eStudent. Instead, you will need to enrol into the units that contribute to the minor by using your elective space. If you are unsure on what units to complete for the minor, please seek Program Advice from the relevant Faculty.
What is a stream?
A stream is a specific way to specialise in fields of engineering under the Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) single and double degrees. This is an accreditation requirement from Engineers Australia for course admission from 2016 onward.
Note: There are no accreditation changes applicable to course commencements in the Bachelor of Engineering and associated double degrees from 2015 and prior. You may continue to follow the qualifying majors outlined in the handbook from your year of admission.
What is a specialisation?
A specialisation is an area of study for Postgraduate students wishing to study under their postgraduate program in order to gain expertise in a particular area. The specialisation chosen should represent your main interest.
Choosing a major, minor or stream
Students who commenced their degree from 2015 onward can only graduate with the degree that they are admitted into. Therefore, it is important that you complete the version of the qualifying major required for your program corresponding to the year that you started your current degree. Please refer to the Handbook archive for information on your degree year.
- All the majors you wish to qualify with must be added to your study plan and nominated on your 'Expect to Complete' form upon completion of your degree.
- Your completed major(s) will be recorded on your transcript and testamur when you graduate.
- Minors will not be displayed in eStudent. Instead, you will need to enrol into the units that contribute to the minor by following the units listed in the Schedule of Minors using your elective space.
- Minors will not be recorded on your transcript or testamur when you graduate
Changing your qualifying major
Students can only nominate to add or change to a Qualifying Major from the year they began their degree. For example, if you were admitted into the Bachelor of Arts in 2016, you can only select a Qualifying Major from the list of majors available under the Bachelor of Arts in the 2016 Handbook.
If the qualifying major you wish to change to is offered in a year after you began your degree, you will be required to apply for Course Transfer during the Course Transfer application period.
For example, if you began the Bachelor of Arts in 2016 and you wish to change your qualifying major to Radio, Digital Audio and Broadcast Production, which was only offered from 2017, you will need to apply for Course Transfer.
If you are a pre-2017 student in a generic degree* and the qualifying major you wish to change to is from a different faculty to the one you are currently admitted to, you will need to apply for Course Transfer during the course transfer application period. For more information, please visit the Course Transfer webpage.
* Generic degrees are the Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science and any double degree that has BA or BSC as the first degree in the double degree name. Qualifying majors in these generic degrees can come from any one of the four main faculties: Arts (ART), Science and Engineering (SCI), Human Sciences (HUS) or Business and Economics (BUS). The faculty designation indicates which faculty owns your degree, as determined by your Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science qualifying major.
Note: If a course transfer is required, your degree will be moved to the newest curriculum of your degree and you will have a new admission. From 1 January 2017 or students who apply to course transfer into a 2017 or later degree, your GPA will be calculated out of 7.00. Further information regarding GPAs can be found on the website.
If you are unsure whether your request requires a Course Transfer, please seek further advice from Student Connect.
Adding or changing a further major
This process is only available for students who were admitted into their bachelor degree from 2015 or after.
A further major is not essential for the completion of your degree and can be any major currently offered at Macquarie University and listed in the Schedule of Majors
If you wish to change a further major you can do this at any time by submitting a Change of Major form.
Note: Your nominated further major will be added for the year that you make your request. If you request to change your further major to Creative Writing in 2017, however, you commenced your Bachelor of Arts in 2016, you will have the 2017 version of Creative Writing added to your study plan.
Adding or changing a minor
Minors will no longer be displayed in eStudent as a separate structure on student study plans.
While minors will not show on study plans, students can still complete a minor if available for their degree. If you wish to undertake a minor, you will need to enrol in the units required to complete the minor using your elective space. If you have run out of elective space, please submit an enquiry to AskMQ so an assessment can be made on whether extra elective space is required. Students will no longer be able to use the Change of Major/Minor/Specialisation Form to add or change a minor.
If you have requested to add or change a minor and additional elective space has been added to your study plan, this allocated space should only be used for units that contribute towards the minor.
Changes to minor requirements from 2018
The requirements for minors have changed from 2018 onwards. Students who wish to complete a 2018 minor will need to ensure that they meet all the requirements for the minor as listed in the handbook.
Due to these changes, there are a number of minors that cannot be completed with another major or another minor. It is important that you check the Schedule of Minors to make sure that the minor that you wish to undertake does not clash with your major and/or other minor.
It is strongly recommended that you seek Program Advice if you are unsure whether you can complete your nominated minor.
Removing a minor
Students can continue to request to remove a minor structure from their study plan using the Change of Major/Minor/Specialisation form.
Students must seek Program Advice prior to submitting a Change of Major/Minor/Specialisation form.
Program Advising will assist you with receiving beneficial information regarding your studies and goals and should be sought prior to submitting any requests to make changes to your study plan. This will help you develop a clear path for your studies at Macquarie.
When seeking advice, students should also check if the units they are enrolled in under the Major/Minor/Stream/Specialisation are still required to be completed. If not, you may be required to withdraw from these units via eStudent prior to any changes being made to your study plan.
Students should make themselves familiar with the Important Dates prior to withdrawing from units, to ensure that they are aware of any academic and/or financial penalties that may apply when withdrawing from units.
Information for OUA students
If you wish to change your current major for your OUA degree, steps to apply are:
- Submit an AskMQ enquiry
- Subject Line: OUA Change of Major Request
- Nominate the major you would like to change to in the body of your enquiry
Once your Change of Major request is received, it will be processed, and you will be notified of this via an email to your Macquarie Student Email Address.
Students admitted into the Bachelor of Advanced Science
or Bachelor of Engineering (Honours)
Students admitted into the Bachelor of Advanced Science cannot use the Change of Major form to request a change to their Qualifying major and/or if they wish to add/change their further major. If you wish to change your major please submit an AskMQ enquiry with Subject Line: Change of Major for Bachelor of Advanced Science
Students admitted to a Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) degree from 2016 onwards are only permitted to undertake one stream within their degree. If you wish to change your stream please submit an AskMQ enquiry with Subject Line: Change of Stream for Bachelor of Engineering (Honours).
Additionally, students are not permitted to take further majors or minors within their elective space if they are admitted to the Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) single degree. Students in a double degree may continue to add secondary majors or minors within their double degree.
Information for International students
If you are an international student, it is important that you are aware of your Student Visa and Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE) conditions. Student visa holders are required to complete their course within a set period of time, indicated by your Confirmation of Enrolment.
Please ensure your request fits within your current CoE. If your request results in an extension to your current course duration, it is recommended you seek advice and approval from Campus Wellbeing.
Information for Sponsored students
If you are an international sponsored student (ie a non-Australian government sponsor pays your tuition fees) you MUST get permission from your sponsor to make the change you are requesting before submitting your application. If you need further assistance, please contact the Campus Wellbeing.
Specialisations are applicable to Postgraduate students only. A specialisation is an area of study that you want to complete under your postgraduate program in order to give you expertise in a particular area. The specialisation you choose should represent your main interest.
Your specialisation(s) will be recorded on your transcript and testamur when you graduate.
Students pursuing the following degrees cannot change specialisations through the online form. You will need to submit a new application for the course, listing the new specialisation. Information about how to apply can be found under our Postgraduate courses information.
Master of Accounting (Advanced)
- ACCA Program
- CPA Program
- Professional Practice
Master of Accounting
- ACCA Program
- CPA Program
- Professional Practice
Master of Commerce*
- Business Management and Organisations
- Financial Crime and Governance
- Human Resource Management
Master of Cyber Security
- Cyber Governance and Management
- Cyber Security Analysis
Master of Education
- Advanced Practices in Teaching and Learning
- Leading Teaching and Learning
Master of Educational Leadership
- Early Childhood
- School Education
Master of Engineering
- Electronics Engineering
- Telecommunications Engineering
Master of Public Health
- Cross Disciplinary Studies
- Professional Practice
Master of Science Innovation
- Chemical and Biomolecular Sciences
- Environmental Sciences
- Geology and Geophysics
- Information Technology
Graduate Certificate of Education Studies
- Advanced Practices in Teaching and Learning
- Educational Leadership
- Leading Teaching and Learning
Graduate Diploma of Applied Finance
- Business Valuation
- Retirement Outcomes
Note: If your course or specialisation is not listed as an option in the online form, please submit an enquiry via AskMQ outlining your current degree details and the changes you would like to request.
- Check that the major/minor combination you are requesting is valid.
It is recommended that you check your request details against the handbook for the year you commenced your degree.
- Seek Program Advice regarding your change to see what implications this may have on your studies.
- If at the time of your request you are enrolled in units that do not contribute to your new study plan, you may be requested to withdraw from these units before your request can be processed.
- If you are on a Student Visa and your request results in an extension to your current course duration, it is recommended you seek advice from Campus Wellbeing regarding your Confirmation of Enrolment (CoE) and visa implications.
- If you are an international sponsored student (ie a non-Australian government sponsor pays your tuition fees) you MUST get permission from your sponsor to make the change you are requesting before submitting your application. If you need further assistance, please contact Campus Wellbeing.
How do I apply
- If you wish to change your major for Session 1 2019, you must submit your request by 5pm Friday, 1 March 2019 in order for your request to be processed in time to add unit(s) to your program.
You can still submit a request after this date however there is no guarantee your request will be processed by the last day to enrol/add units(s) to your program.
- Apply by submitting a Change of Major/Minor/Specialisation form.
- If your degree or major combination is not listed as an option in the online form, please submit an enquiry via AskMQ outlining your current degree details and the changes you would like to request.
- Check your student email account for a confirmation email with your case reference number. If you don't receive this confirmation email, please contact Student Connect to follow up.
- If you wish to cancel your application, please submit an enquiry via AskMQ within 3 days of your original submission. Please include in the subject line "Change of Major/Minor/Specialisation - cancel application". Make sure you include the case reference number you received with your original application.
After my application has been processed
- Check your student email account regularly for updates in case the University requires more information regarding your request.
- Log in to eStudent to view the changes made to your study plan. If you notice any discrepancies following the processing of your request, please submit an enquiry via AskMQ with an explanation of the issue and include the case number of your Change of Major request.
- Depending on your request and the available amount of elective space in the study plan, some units may have been moved around or moved off-plan. Units that have been moved off-plan will be noted with a student comment on your unofficial transcript.
- Seek Program Advice to ensure that degree requirements are still being met as a result of your study plan change.