January 18, 1933
President MacCracken proposed to the faculty an extensive revision of the Vassar curriculum. He explained that the plan was designed to allow students to concentrate more on individual work. The proposal reduced the undeclass course load from five full courses to four and the senior course load from four to three, bringing the number of courses required for the bachelor's degree to 15. The equivalent of a fourth course in the senior year was preparation for a major subject examination at the end of the first semester and the preparation of a long paper in seniors' chosen fields in the second semester.
Increased administrative supervision in the first year would, MacCracken said, allow for maximum preparation for the selection of a major. Guidance in the sophomore and junior years would aid in successful coordination of the major field of knowledge. The new plan's "essential feature," he said, "is a simplification of the curriculum by reducing the number of courses and class hours. The present curriculum is effective but has become too complicated. It leaves no time for the most desirable work, advanced in quality and solid in quantity."
The proposed changes, studied and modified by the faculty working as a committee of the whole and with considerable consultation with the students, were approved on February 18, 1935, for implementation in the fall. The Miscellany News