Picking a major in college can be difficult. Especially just after you spent a lot of time and stress on picking the right school. In this class I will teach you some tips to help you choose the best major when entering college. Sit back and enjoy this article and start by realizing you’re not alone. Yes, some students will arrive on campus and know what they want to major in, but most don’t.
The first thing I suggest when choosing a major is to sit down and write the things that you enjoy the most in life. Odds are that your major will influence what you do for the rest of your life. Even if you just say that you want to be a doctor or lawyer because you want to make money, it doesn’t mean either a law or medical degrees are the best options for you. The most successful people in life are successful because they enjoy what they do. Enjoying what you do will bring more passion and dedication into your work which will always lead to larger rewards both emotionally and monetarily.
Questions You Need to Ask When Picking A Major
Start looking at majors by building building a list to the following questions. These questions will help you to determine your strongest attributes and weaknesses. When you lay something out visually it will help you to brainstorm.
- What do I enjoy most in life?
- What are the careers of people I admire?
- What subjects did I enjoy the most in high school or other fields of study?
- What are my best attributes or skills?
- What are my weaknesses?
- Do I have any hobbies that may interest me as a career?
- What did I like and dislike from past work experiences?
- Where do I want to live after graduation and what careers are in demand in that area?
Resources to Help You Decide on a Major
- Family and Friends – Discuss with people you know about their careers and if they could have done something differently what they would have done. Although I think career fairs are great, you will never get a more truthful answer than from someone you know personally.
- Career Fairs – The biggest upside to career fairs is you may find out about jobs or fields you have never heard of that peak your interest. You can attend career fairs at any university or check with your local chamber of commerce.
- College Course Catalog – Every school publishes a course catalog that will outline specific courses to specialized majors. I recommend going online to several colleges and downloading their course catalog as some schools specialize in degrees that others won’t.
- High School Guidance Counselor – Your guidance counselor has dealt with hundreds if not thousands of students in the past in your same situation, ask them for some advice.
- College Career Center – Every school will have a career center that you can visit and get some guidance. Also ask if they could setup a meeting with students about to enter the work force so you can ask them about their studies and why they picked the major they did.
- Career Assessment Test – Although I think career assessment test are a great tool for finding your strengths, a lot of them will give you results that you may not be interested or passionate about. I suggest taking a few but remember that if it’s not something that interests you highly don’t do it. If nothing else maybe it gives you some ideas for some electives in your first few years.
- Alumni – Visit your alumni center and ask if you could setup a few meeting with some prominent alumni in different fields. I HIGHLY SUGGEST this as it could lead to a job or internship down the road.
Begin College with General Studies
I think students who enter into college and don’t pick a major but take general studies are more likely to succeed and enjoy their careers. General studies will give you a wide range of subjects and introductions to majors. If you don’t enjoy a particular class subject such as math, odds are you won’t want to be an accountant for the rest of your life. An important thing to consider is if you bomb a quiz during general studies don’t think the class subject can’t be your major. It’s more important to choose a major you are passionate about then something you are just good at or already know a lot about. When picking electives don’t pick them just because the are the easiest ones. Pick electives that you find interesting and may help you decide on a major.
Don’t Stress Out!
College is meant to be the best learning experience of your life. You shouldn’t expect to know what you want to do for the rest of your life when you don’t even know what is all out there. Take your time and follow the tips in this article and I promise you will end up in a career path that you are very happy you chose. In final thoughts, whether its in picking a major in college or trying to come up with the next brilliant idea, networking is key. The more you network and speak to people the more knowledge you will gain including picking the best major for you.