The Concentration Requirement

All degree candidates must fulfill the requirements of one of the recognized fields of concentration, an approved joint concentration, or an approved special concentration. A student’s concentration is a commitment to a particular discipline, field, or specialization. All concentrations provide students with opportunities for appreciating, assimilating, and making applications of a coherent body of knowledge.

Harvard currently offers fifty fields of concentration, some of which have multiple tracks. Each concentration is overseen by a faculty member serving as the Head Tutor or the Director of Undergraduate Studies. Overviews of each concentration, its specific requirements, and how to obtain more information about the concentration are included in Fields of Concentration and Secondary Fields.

In many concentrations, students may pursue either a basic program or one that makes them eligible for honors in the field. Honors-eligible programs generally differ from basic programs in that they require a senior thesis and/or advanced course work. To be awarded the degree with honors in the field of concentration, the student must complete the honors requirements within the concentration, receive an honors recommendation from the department or committee that supervises the concentration, and meet the College-wide requirements for an honors degree. Students should understand that completing the degree requirements for an honors-eligible program does not guarantee that they will graduate with honors (see "Requirements for Honors Degrees”).

Several concentrations may limit enrollment by selecting their concentrators from those students who apply. These concentrations include Environmental Science and Public Policy; History and Literature; Comparative Literature; and Art, Film, and Visual Studies. Each of these programs attempts to select those students whose needs and interests will best be served by its offerings and will admit as many students as its teaching resources allow.