How to Choose Your Major in College
1. You don’t have to Choose Your Major First Semester, Freshman Year
In most cases, don’t sweat it. Most schools don’t ask you to look at a major until sometime during your sophomore year. (Certain majors, however, like engineering and accounting, have so many requirements that unless you declare early, you may not graduate in time.) If you are undecided, take a wide variety of classes. Visit your college career/counseling center. Talk to your advisor See what you like. College is the perfect time to test the waters and try lots of new things.
2. Try Introductory Courses in an Area of Interest
Talk to your advis0r about what courses would be appropriate and how these might fit into your general education requirements. Taking survey courses in areas that sound interesting to you or in subjects that you may not have had much exposure to previously are good ways to explore.
3. Join a Student Organization
Chances are, there is at least one student organization that is related to your area of interest. Active participation in a group with a specialized focus will allow you to interact with others who quite possibly have similar interests and abilities. You can make some determinations if you have much in common with others in the major through your involvement in the student organization
4. What can I do with this Major or Degree?
Learn how to apply your major to specific career areas, what types of employers are hiring for different majors, and strategies for breaking into particular fields. Remember, your major does not always determine your career. Professionals use their education in a variety of fields. Be sure to explore a variety of resources as you research possible career paths.
5. Ask Someone Who has been There
Often the best source of information is an advanced undergraduate who is currently enrolled in that major (ask the undergraduate adviser for a recommendation, if you don’t know one). Once you’ve located your partner in crime, be sure to ask him or her who the good professors are, what courses are difficult (and what to do about them), and what out-of-class activities (internships, conferences, study abroad, etc) he or she has found most useful. Nothing beats advice from one who has been when you’re trying to go!
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