Posts Tagged ‘college major’
Most college students will change their major at least once, whether it be something simple, such as transferring from one branch of engineering to another, or something more drastic, such as going from a criminal justice major to an art major. While knowing what you want to do for the rest of your life comes naturally to some people, for many, it’s a struggle. Students often find themselves in majors they aren’t sure about. Here are some signs you’re in the right one.
You Geek Out Over It
When you start learning things in your lectures that completely fascinate you, and you find yourself repeating them to your friends at the dining hall, you have picked the right college major. When your professor’s door is covered with nerdy cartoons relevant to your field, and you both understand them and find them funny, you have picked the right college major. When you find yourself doing extra research on a topic just because you found it interesting, you’re in the right college major! The area you choose to study should be something you enjoy learning about.
You Think About It on Your Own Time
As a college student you are expected to take on some initiative, and to have your own motivation when it comes to pursuing your field. At some point, college will be over, and with the knowledge you are given, you will have to decide for yourself how to best apply it. Your major has to be something you actively consider even when you’re not in class. If you find yourself dwelling on a theory before you fall asleep, or thinking about what methods you could someday use in your future job, you have picked the right college major!
You Feel Successful in It
While part of choosing a college major is picking something you like, the other part is picking something you can do well enough to get a paycheck. That is, after all, the main point of going to college and finding a job. The major you choose should make you feel strong and confident. Your major should make you feel smart. Your major should make you feel as if you can accomplish anything. If dissecting a frog, building an engine, or giving a presentation makes you feel like you’re in your zone, then you have picked the right college major!
You Sometimes Don’t Like It So Much
Even if you have picked the right college major, there will be days where you sort of hate it. There will be times where you wondered if you should have picked something a little easier, or something that would make more money, or something where you didn’t have to take a particular stressful test. It’s okay to have these feelings. Just because you don’t necessarily “like” your major 100% of the time doesn’t mean you’ve picked the wrong one. Everything has peaks and valleys. The way you know you’ve picked the right major is that the next peak is right around the corner!
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Choosing a college major can be a very stressful time. While some people apply to specific programs in college and go to college knowing what they want to do, others really need to learn more about themselves before picking a major. Remember, college majors are important but they won’t necessarily push you into a box for the rest of your life. Don’t freak out! Many music majors can go to med school and pre-med students can wind up at law school.
Here are some helpful suggestions:
What do you love to do?
Think really hard about what you love to do. Picture the classes you get excited about going to. Classes you get excited about doing the reading. Is there a major that involves many of these things?
What are you skilled in?
Be honest with yourself. What are you good at? What classes have you always excelled in? More often than not, these will overlap with what you love to do. Remember, majors can lead to a field. You wouldn’t want to base your career on something that you aren’t good at.
Do you already know what job you want to do?
If you know what job you want to do after you graduate, look into what majors best prepare you for that job. Talk to people in that field. For example, if you want to be a political journalist, maybe journalists you meet will tell you not to go to journalism school but to be a history/polysci double major and write for your school paper.
Planning on Grad School?
If you’re planning on going to grad school, look into what types of majors they want. For example, if you want to go to medical school, you probably want to be a pre-med-related major. If you want to go to a certain class of law schools, find out what types of majors they like. Put yourself in the best position possible to get accepted to the grad school of your dream.
Ok remember, DON’T FREAK OUT! College majors can be important (especially if you are planning on going to a specific graduate program that requires a specific major). However, if you are getting a general liberal arts degree, your specific major might not affect at all your success in life in whatever field you want to go in to. Pick something you love, are passionate about, and will put you on the path to success in a career you want to start.
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Between 30-40% of incoming college freshmen are undecided on a major when they enter college. It’s also estimated that between 75-80% of students change their majors during their college careers.
Is it good to be open minded about your studies or does jumping around majors hurt you in the process?
Leave your answer in the comments below or tweet at @Cappex to chime in (we’ll post your answer below)!
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