Archive for the ‘Majors & Minors’ Category

How Do You Choose the Right Major?

Categories: Majors & Minors

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Has anyone asked you what you’re thinking about majoring in yet? Maybe you’ve considered English, computer science, or fine art, but not been quite sure of your choices. As college gets closer you might expect to wake up suddenly and think, “That’s it! I was meant to be a biology major!”

Unfortunately, most students don’t experience this lightbulb moment. This makes choosing a major – not to mention a college that offers it – that much more confusing. And ACT data shows only about a third of college-bound students end up choosing a major that fits well with their interests. If you’re not in this relatively small group, you may end up switching majors at some point. This often means more time in school, more money spent on tuition, and more stress for you.

That’s why we’ve created our Careers and Majors quiz. Answer a few simple questions about your preferences and personality and we’ll give you a customized list of majors that will suit you and some potential career paths you could take.

Once you’ve found a topic of study that sparks your interest, check out which schools offer the program and add them to your list to get more information and see your chances of getting in.

Who Should Take the Quiz?
The quiz isn’t just for high school students heading off to college this fall – you can take it at any age. Freshmen and sophomores can use it to plan what electives they’d like to take as upperclassmen or start thinking about career paths. Juniors can use it to start narrowing down their list of colleges based on which ones fit their general interests. Seniors – you can take the quiz to see which majors may be worth considering after you step onto campus in a few months or which classes you should enroll in your first year.

It’s never too early or too late to know what areas are good match for you based on your unique personality and preferences. Get started now, and don’t worry – you’re not being graded!

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What Are the Highest Paying College Majors?

Categories: Majors & Minors

There’s a lot to think about when you’re choosing a college. Where will you go? What will you major in? But more frequently, high school seniors are asking themselves: What’s my return on investment?

Deciding on a college major is a personal decision. Only you know what program is right for your interests, skills, and career aspirations. But the the cost of college rising every year, many high school grads want to make sure they’ll be able to pay back their loans quickly – especially if they haven’t started to apply for scholarships yet.

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Which Majors Are the Most Lucrative?
More college-bound students worried about their future earnings potential. That’s why PayScale created a list of the highest paying college majors. It shows both early- and mid-career median salaries for a range of majors.

Engineering majors of all types topped the list, with petroleum engineering majors making a median early-career salary of more than $102,000. Their mid-career median wage hit more than $176,000. This is substantially higher than child development majors, who saw an early-career median salary of just more than $32,000 annually. Pay didn’t rise dramatically for these individuals, as their mid-career median was just less than $36,500 per year.

And while some parents have been encouraging their aspiring humanities majors to choose a more marketable degree, it turns out language, history, and literature grads aren’t doing too badly after all. English literature majors start their careers with a median salary of $40,600 and boost their pay to $76,500 after 10 years in the workforce.

So … What Should I Major In?
It’s a fact: People who major in some subjects tend to earn higher annual salaries than others. But that doesn’t mean everyone is cut out to be an engineering or actuarial mathematics major.

You should choose your major based on many things. Your interests. Your skills. Your dream career. And, if you’re concerned about seeing a return on your investment, considering earnings potential before declaring a major may be worthwhile. But picking a course of study based only on salary is risky. There’s no guarantee you’ll enjoy your classes and do well in school and, perhaps more importantly, salaries aren’t set in stone. That means while PayScale’s data may show engineers outearning childhood development professionals, this may not ring true for your unique situation.

No matter what you choose though, it’s important to be informed about how your major will impact your career choices over the long term.

What are you majoring in? Do you think earnings potential is an important part of choosing a degree?

 image credit: msn.com

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How to Choose a College Minor

Categories: Majors & Minors

dv1453017Choosing a major, your primary field of study, is undoubtedly one of the most important decisions that you must make in college. But what about a minor? A minor is a secondary field of study that requires fewer courses than your major. Even if your college or university does not require you to declare a minor, there are several reasons why you might want to add one. Here are four different strategies to consider when choosing a college minor.

1. Explore Your Passions (Example: Major in Accounting, Minor in Photography)
College is the perfect time to delve into your passion, even if you can’t or choose not to commit to it as your major. Is there something you love to do or learn about outside of your major? Minoring in a subject that excites and motivates you is a great way to ensure that you have an outlet outside of your major. You’ll also demonstrate that you’re dedicated to your passion.

2. Enhance Your Major (Example: Major in English, Minor in Creative Writing)
Pursuing a minor is a great way to explore the areas of your major in which you are most interested. You may take classes on a certain topic as a part of your major, and if you really enjoy and excel in these courses, consider minoring in the subject if it’s available at your school. Your major may be very broad, so minoring in a more concentrated field may expose more of your interests and personality to future employers.

3. Fill in the Gaps (Example: Major in Computer Science, Minor in Communications)
A minor can fill in any gaps your major may leave behind. This strategy may be helpful for students enrolled in a specialized program. A minor in an entirely different subject may show future employers that you’re well-rounded and capable of collaborating with team members with a variety of personalities and skill sets.

4. Learn a Helpful Skill (Example: Major in Biology/Pre-Med, Minor in Spanish)
A minor’s relationship to a major may not be obvious at first, but it may be beneficial depending on your future career goals. Skills such as language, accounting, technology, marketing, or writing may come in handy down the road. For example, if you want to go into medicine, learning Spanish so you can communicate directly with Spanish-speaking patients makes perfect sense. If you have entrepreneurial dreams, having accounting or marketing knowledge may help you launch your business.

Do you really need a minor?
Minors can be nice to have as they can help your resume stand out when you start looking for your first job. However, it most likely won’t hurt you not to have a minor. A minor should complement your passions or career aspirations. If your school doesn’t offer a minor that fits into your goals, or if you’re unsure about what you want to do after college (which is totally okay!) you are better off taking electives that interest you instead of committing to a minor just because you feel like you should. So go ahead and take an Art of Taking Selfies class or Game of Thrones seminar. Now is the time!

image credit: education.seattlepi.com

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