Choosing a major is one of the most important decisions you will make in college. It will impact the courses you take, what you learn, and what you will pursue post-graduate. It is estimated that between 20 and 50 percent of students that enter college are undecided: a common attribute across U.S. colleges and universities. We know that choosing a major may cause stress and pressure to many students across the nation, that is why we are sharing 4 tips on how to choose a major that is best fitted for you.
Enroll in Intro Courses
Freshman and Sophomore year of college are the ideal times to explore your interests. If you are undecided but know that you love photography, enroll in an Introduction to Photography course. This will allow you to dive deeper into the subject and discover whether it is the correct track for you or not. Introductory courses are perfect because they provide the basic knowledge and outlook into what could potentially be your major. They are a low-commitment, low-pressure and accessible method of exploring interests and meeting new students. (For introductory courses to different majors and careers, check out our Pre-University College Careers.)
Speak to an Advisor and other Students
Academic advisors are one of the most helpful resources on campus when deciding what major to pursue. They are experts in sharing knowledge about possible career tracks and how that can impact your college experience and curriculum. Based on your past experiences and interests, that can help guide and plan what your years in college might look like. It is highly recommended that you meet with them at least once per semester to ensure you are on track to make the most of your time in college. Similarly, reaching out to juniors and seniors can be a great way to gain insight into different majors. They would be able to speak about upper level courses and what that looked like for them. (For additional support and mentorship, check out our University Application Mentorship.)
Evaluate your Interests
Choosing the right major means that it aligns with your interests and career aspirations. If you enjoy computer programming, you might want to consider majoring in Computer Science or Information Systems. College is the ideal time to explore untapped interests that can help decide what major you declare. Same with past subjects you have enjoyed in high school. If you loved your algebra classes in high school, it is worth considering enrolling in math classes that can aid in helping you declare a major. The opportunities are endless, but one thing is certain: you must learn who you are and you love doing to make the best of your college experience.
Follow your Aspirations
Declaring a major that fulfills your academic needs and personal interests means that you are more likely to engage with the material you are learning. It is very important to do what you love and follow your dreams of becoming a Videogame Designer or a Fashion Marketer. Some students choose to pursue a medical or law school career because they think that they will enjoy the work and make a generous living when they graduate. However, the challenge they face is that no matter the amount of money you make, if you hate the work, you are going to be miserable for the rest of your life. That is why it is important to follow your dreams of what makes you happy and brings joy to your life. Choosing a college major is about pleasing yourself and not your parents or your friends. It’s really about finding yourself and what is important to you.
These are just a few of the tips we recommend you contemplate when stepping foot into college. There are many resources that can help you along the way. Do not hesitate to reach out to your academic advisor or explore untapped interests. Choosing a major is about you and what makes you happy. Do not feel pressured to enroll in courses just because others are doing it. Really take the time to evaluate your life as this leads to the most fulfilling college experience. At the end of the day, a major is simply a major and not a forever decision that will haunt you for the rest of your life. Enjoy college and make the most of it!