Undeclared & Exploring

"Not all those who wander are lost" – J.R.R. Tolkein

Being an undeclared student is a privilege as it allows students the flexibility to learn more about themselves and what it is that they are interested in studying. Student's level of undecided-ness can be very different so it is important to focus on onself without comparing oneself to other students. Some students have no idea what major they want to pursue, some know and just need to change their major and others are undecided between a few options.  Wherever a student is, it's ok! 

The Undergraduate Advising Center (UAC) supports all undeclared students until they are declared so students are not in this journey alone. Choosing a major can be long process- it typically does not occur over night! Students should meet with their academic counselor as soon as possible to start the major exploration process.  During the first appointment, students can expect the academic counselor to share a number of exploration strategies and to assign some tasks to work on. 

In general, the UAC recommend students start exploring various majors during their freshmen year of college and that they declare a major by the end of your sophomore year. 


Besides your major requirements, students must complete their GE and University requirements.  Be sure to make sure you've completed all of these requirements for graduation. 

The Undergraduate Advising Center (UAC) facilitates graduation and centrally supports activities that help to ensure the achievement of the academic success goals of students, advising faculty and campus support staff. The UAC’s main focus is to provide services that respond to the developmental, personal planning and pre-professional needs of our diverse student population. The UAC supports advising related processes across the campus, cooperatively working with faculty, staff and students. The UAC offers information, guidance, consultation, advocacy, leadership and training to assist students in graduating in a timely manner. 

Undergraduate Advising Center

Administration Building, Room 211
Phone: (415) 338-2101
Email: uacadvising@sfsu.edu
Website: https://advising.sfsu.edu

Freshmen Student Advising Information

The Undergraduate Advising Center is your home base for advising until you declare a major. You will have a designated advisor and access to an online resource called "Exploring Majors: Pathway to Declaration" to help guide you through the major exploration process. Look out for an email from your advisor with more information. 

The Advising Hub is a good starting place for your research about majors at SF State. Each of our major pages include FAQs and links to degree requirements/roadmaps in the University Bulletin and the major department website.

When a major is impacted, it means that more students than can be accommodated want to declare the major. Students have to apply and be accepted into impacted majors and should connect with the major department for information about how to declare. For a list of impacted majors, refer to future.sfsu.edu/impaction.

Once you decide on a major, it is best to declare as soon as possible so you can connect with the department for major advising. For non-impacted majors, you can declare at any time. Impacted majors may have deadlines so you should connect with the major department for information about their declaration process.

The Career Services and Leadership Development office and their team of career counselors offer individualized career counseling, workshops, events, and more. This is an excellent campus resource for all undeclared students to connect with during their 1st semester and beyond.

Full-time status is 12 units but if your goal is to graduate in 4 years, plan to complete at least 30 units each year. For example, some students take 15 units in the fall semester and 15 units in the spring semester so they earn 30 units by the end of their 1st year at SF State.

During your 1st year, taking lower division (courses numbered 100-299) General Education courses are a great way to explore potential majors and choosing courses from a variety of different GE areas can help create a more balanced schedule. Try to identify GE courses in fields you might be interested in.

To explore a major, it may be possible to take an introductory major class or prerequisite for the major. Refer to the 1st Semester Recommendations by Major on the Advising Hub for course recommendations from the major department. You can take an introductory major class for a few majors if you have more than one in mind.