What Should I Major In? 5 Tips in Choosing The Right College Major

Not sure on what to major in? Don’t worry. A lot of students are in the same dilemma, thinking that choosing a major will either make or break their careers. Well, not really. You may end up in a career that is not related to your major and you’ll do as well. In fact, statistics show that only 27% of college grads are in jobs related to their major.

So while it’s important to have a major, it’s not really a life sentence – you can go through it, but you can find ways to work around it.


“So what should I major in?”


There’s no quick answer to that. But if it’s a standard answer that you want, you can try to get yourself assessed at websites. They could match your GPA, level of interest in subjects, extracurricular activities and location to specific majors and schools. There are also some that would ask you fifteen questions and suggest majors without the specifics – and you’d get pretty interesting results.


what should I major in


But if you don’t want something as generic as an online quiz to decide for you, you can always use these five tips and decide for yourself.


1. Don’t believe the myth.

A common myth about choosing a major is that you’ll get locked into a specific career path. This is completely untrue. Your choice of major may help, but it’s not entirely critical to landing jobs. A lot of people get careers completely unrelated to their degrees and they are very successful at it.


2. Consider your interests.

What are you most passionate about? What makes you happy? It’s important you decide on a major that you have a genuine interest in. Otherwise, you’ll end up getting poor grades and changing majors. Not only are you wasting time, you’re wasting money as well, and college isn’t cheap.


3. Weigh your priorities.

Is making a lot of money more attractive to you than enjoying a career with less income? Or are you more concerned about getting your degree in just four years? Consider these things carefully and keep in mind that whatever you decide on, there’s a major that’s right for you.


4.  Assess your strengths.

Which subjects are you really good at? This might be entirely different from what you really want, but you have to make an honest assessment of yourself. You might want to major in art but your strength is in philosophy. Try to consider other options. Writing, perhaps? It’s entirely up to you. However, if you have set your heart on a major you’re not strong at, just be prepared to work harder.


5. Get some insight.

Your family knows you best. Why not ask for their honest opinion? After all, they’re your biggest support group. You could also consult your academic advisor and get some good advice. Or you can talk to somebody who has graduated with a major you’re interested in and ask questions. Every insight is invaluable.


When do I decide?


  • If you are a freshman, you have until the end of sophomore year to decide as this is the time when your college asks you to declare a major. Enroll in general education courses to get a feel of which subjects you’re most interested in. You don’t have to make too many early commitments to a particular major so take your time.


  • If you are a sophomore, your school might expect you to declare your major by the end of the school year. Some schools may have it declared earlier or later, so make sure to check.


  • Take note that some degrees require formal technical training like engineering, accounting, the sciences and law. These careers require a specific course of study and if you’re considering a degree in any of these, you have to decide early on.


Deciding what to major in is a big decision, and big decisions take time. So step back and make a careful assessment of all the things you have to consider: make lists, weigh pros and cons and research the job market. If you can, try not to associate majors with salaries. Instead, follow your dreams and pursue your interests and everything else will follow.

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