Colleges combine subject areas into groups called divisions. At larger universities, these divisions might actually be entire colleges or schools, such as a college of arts and sciences or a school of journalism.
Each subject area is a discipline. The people who teach in that discipline make up a department. Sometimes a department covers more than one discipline. For example, the disciplines of French, Spanish, and other languages may make up the modernlanguages department.
The way departments are combined varies. One college may have a modern languages department, which includes only currently spoken languages. The professors who teach Latin and Greek might be in a separate department, such as Classics. At another college, the Latin and Greek professors may be combined with the French and Spanish professors in a foreign languages department.
The way divisions are organized also varies. The business administration program at some colleges is so large that it is its own division made up of management, marketing, accounting, finance, human resources, and production disciplines.
Elsewhere, the program may be so small that it is a single disciplinewithin social sciences. Mathematics may be grouped with natural sciences, engineering, computer science, or humanities.
When you look at colleges, look at how departments are organized. Be sure the college you choose offers thespecific area in which you are interested.