Functions > Student Info > Major Program

The Major Program (MP) record in SIS reflects the programs of study a student has pursued at WU, past, present, and future. Each MP record contains specific information about that program and about the student’s status in that program (Open, Finished, or Closed). The schools may admit a student that is not a candidate for a WU degree or certificate; such unclassified students are referred to as SNCD, or Student Not Candidate for a Degree, and are given an SNCD MP record.

The various programs of study offered at WU are defined and approved by the governing body of each school and its dean. The University Registrar must be notified in writing, with documentation, of all new degrees, majors, and minors approved by the schools, and of all programs no longer offered. The Provost must approve all new degrees offered by the University.

Students pursuing more than one course of study at any given time will have a “prime” major program and others referred to as “joint”. All current students must have one and only one open prime MP record, and an open prime must be present in SIS in order to register that student for classes in any semester. The student’s prime MP also establishes his/her prime division, which in turn is used for a variety of purposes in SIS and elsewhere within the University, including the assessment of tuition charges and the allocation of tuition income back to the schools. The student’s prime division is a reflection of ownership on that student’s records, and so the prime school has the ability in SIS to update those records and is responsible for maintaining all current MP information on its students, including the declared majors and minors within that school as well as joint programs being pursued by the student in other WU schools.

Interdivision Transfers are those students transferring within the University from one school to another. Because the “ownership” of the student’s record changes with the change in school, all interdivision transfers require the approval of the dean’s offices of both schools and are entered into SIS by the Office of the University Registrar. Interdivision transfers must be submitted online through IDT or on paper no later than the end of the 4th week of the effective semester. Note: students not currently enrolled (no open MP) and not on Leave of Absence may be admitted to a new school or division within the University without written approval from the former school, and a new MP record may be created in SIS by the new school.

  • Major Program Maintenance

The Major Program Maintenance tab on the MP window is where MP records can be added or changed. When adding a new mp record, use the Add/Insert Row buttons; look up mp codes for a particular division or department by typing that portion of the mp code in the PgmCode box then Enter, and click to select the desired program from the popup box. Obsolete mp codes are noted in red. The Admit Semester on an MP is that semester in which the student begins that particular course of study. The Termination Semester on an MP should be the last semester in which the student was pursuing that particular program. A Faculty Advisor or Special Advisor can be linked to that student and MP by clicking on the Name button in the Advisor block and selecting the advisor from the available list; linked advisors have access to their advisees’ academic records at webfac.

The Program Completion Detail area in the lower portion of the MP Maintenance tab is where schools may indicate that requirements have been completed for a specific major, minor or degree. The status of Pending is typically used when the student is currently enrolled in the courses necessary for the completion of that program. The Latin Honors flag here reflects a recommendation made by the school or department of the honor to be awarded.

  • Degree Info

All degree records are maintained in SIS by the Office of the University Registrar. It is the responsibility of each school to evaluate each of the students enrolled in their programs of study and certify that all requirements have been met by the date of the degree. An Intent to Graduate (paper form or web ITG) must be submitted by the published deadline date to initiate the degree process. The schools are subsequently provided with a series of working lists of degree candidates from which additions and deletions can be made. All degrees awarded by Washington University require approval from the Board of Trustees or the Chancellor. Deletions received by the Office of the University Registrar after the degree date are not acceptable.

Certificates which have been completed do NOT have Degree Info records in SIS, and are only noted by the Finished status on the MP itself which for certificate programs (and only these!) is the responsibility of the school registrars to maintain.

In February 2016, the following policy regarding posthumous degrees was approved by the Provost, Deans, Secretary to the Board of Trustees, and University Registrar:

  • Posthumous degrees may be awarded to a deceased student as determined by the dean of the school and the Provost. The student’s name will be included on the list of degree candidates presented to the Board of Trustees, with a posthumous notation. The University Registrar will prepare a diploma indicating the actual name of the degree, even though all degree requirements were not completed; the word “posthumously” will be noted in the lower corner of the document. The student’s name will be included in the Commencement Program with a posthumous notation.

Data Fields

field nameformatdatabase nameNotes
Pgm Codetextmp_prog_codeMajor Program (MP) Code per Programs table
Pgm Nametextmp_prog_nameMajor Program (MP) Name per Programs table
Dual Degree
Area of Specialty
Prime or Joint
StatusOpen (1) indicates a program that is currently being pursued by the student; Closed (2) is a program no longer being pursued; Finished (3) is a program which has been completed
CIP 2000Classification of Instructional Program (CIP) Codes are assigned to each program of study by the University Registrar per program definitions outlined by the federal government. CIP Codes are widely used for various arms of federal reporting, including IPEDS and SEVIS, and in some external reporting such as AAUDE. The CIP Code assigned to a given program at Washington University may be changed as needed to reflect changes in that program or clarification on program definitions; changes made to CIP Code assignments must be communicated to the Office of International Students and Scholars and the Office of Institutional Research. OPT/STEM Note: STEM designations are defined for specific purposes by whatever agency or organization is interested in the STEM fields. One STEM designation list which is most often of interest to students is the one maintained by the Department of Homeland Security for purposes of offering an OPT visa extension for international students who have graduated but attended college in the U.S. under a student visa. The DHS list of STEM designated programs is based on their assigned CIP classification. For internal reporting at WashU, we tyically use our own definitions of what constitutes “STEM”.
Special Advisor
Semester Admitted(values maintained in the Degree Dates table)
Semester Terminated(values maintained in the Degree Dates table)
Faculty Advisor Name
Faculty Advisor ID
Joint Program Dept 1
Joint Program Dept 2
Completion Status
Latin Honors
Lat.Honors w/Thesis
DA Catalog Year
DA Prog Type
DA Marker Name