What is a POE - The Program of Emphasis (POE) is Juniata’s unique approach to focused education in an academic area of a student’s choosing.  Somewhat similar to a traditional “major,” the POE consists of up to half of the total degree and is an opportunity for students to explore in depth a particular discipline or to craft an individual plan of study.  With advisors’ help, students draft a POE goal statement, identify classes, and develop rationale for their program.

POE Types:
Double POE
Secondary Emphasis

Designated - A POE of 45-63 credits, Designated POEs have been proposed by a department or program and approved by the curriculum committee.  Descriptions of current designated POEs are available at Juniata College - Office of the Registrar.  No student rationale is required. 

Individualized - The individualized POE is a program, similar to a “major” at other institutions, which can combine any area of study that interests students.  The Program of Emphasis allows students to take classes, work on projects, and pursue internships in two or three study areas.  An individualized POE may also focus on courses from one department. 

An individualized POE is a POE of 45-63 credits designed by the student in consultation with faculty advisors.  Individualized POEs are intended to meet particular student needs with unique combinations of courses.  Approval requires students to write a rationale that describes how the courses they have listed help them reach the academic goals of the POE.

What the requirements of an Individualized POE?

Students who do not adopt a Designated Program of Emphasis may design an Individualized Program of Emphasis of their own.  This option is for students with particular interests not addressed in designated POEs to make appropriate combinations of courses to precisely address those interests.  An individualized POE must contain a minimum of 45 and a maximum of 63 credit hours.  A minimum of 18 credit hours must be at the 300 or 400 level.

Students wishing to pursue this option must:

Any POE that does not satisfy the requirements of a Designated POE is by definition, an Individualized POE and must therefore be accompanied by a goal statement and rationale.  Advisors should pay particular attention to attempts which effectively weakens a Designated POE without contributing sufficient complementary breadth or depth.

How do I develop an Individualized POE title?

The title of your POE is important; it will appear on your transcripts.  You need to choose words that represent your actual POE, but you must be careful with words that are “owned” by particular departments, for instance:

Another example is any Individualized POE with the word (or partial word) “Chemistry” or “Chemical” in the title should include, as a minimum, CH 105, 106, 121, 122, 230, 250 and 350, that is, the normal first two year of chemistry plus Physical Chemistry I and, of course, the prerequisites of the course.  An advisor from the Chemistry Department would be required if using “Chemistry” or “Chemical” in the title.

Most departments have similar constraints on words used in POE titles.  So consult closely with the departments where your POE is being developed.  Some departments list this information on their website, please refer to the individual department websites for the most current information, they often will provide you guidelines for developing an individualized POE in that department.

Be careful that your POE title does not falsely represent that you completed 2 areas of study that are existing designated POEs.  If the title of the Individualized POE sounds like two separate designated POEs, such as Philosophy and Psychology, then it will be counted as a Double POE, which means the student has to fulfill all the requirements for both Philosophy and Psychology.  This is why the title must be such that it does not represent that the student is completing 2 designated POEs.  So in this case a title like “Psycho-Philosophical Studies” would avoid appearing as a double major.  The title would have to be approved by both the Philosophy and Psychology departments.

Double POE
"Double POE" signifies the completion of two designated POEs
Students must submit separate POE forms for each POE
Double POEs titles will be listed on the transcript and graduation materials separately
Students may earn Double POEs they cannot have 2 degrees. If both POES are BS or BA, the degree will be a BS or BA respectively. If the POEs are BA and BS; ie, Biology and French the student will earn a BS degree

Secondary Emphasis – The secondary emphasis is set up by the department.  The emphasis must carry a minimum of 18 credits.  The secondary emphasis course requirements for each department are available at Juniata College - Office of the Registrar