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Questions to Ask When Choosing a Major

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Choosing a major is one of the most important decisions a college student can make. Your major is the area of concentration that you spend the majority of your college years focused on. Your major can directly translate to what type of job you plan to get after graduation and to how prepared you are to face the job market. Before choosing a major, there are several important questions you should ask to ensure you choose the major that is right for you.

Questions to Ask Before Choosing a Major

  • What is actually involved in getting this degree?

There are certain requirements at every school to get a degree in a certain major. Make sure you find out what all of those requirements are. For example, if you want to be a computer science major because you live computers, it is important to know what courses you will have to take. If you have to take 6 semesters of complicated math to get a computer science degree and you hate math and failed high school calculus, maybe that major is not for you.

  • Am I capable of doing the work required to get the major?

Some majors are more difficult than others. It doesn’t make sense to choose a major if it is going to be too hard for you or if it is an area that you struggle with, since even if you are able to complete the degree, you may get poor grades and thus not be able to get the prime jobs in your field. It is better to choose something you are good at, it possible, when choosing a major.

  • Do I enjoy the field?

If you are going to choose a particular major, that is likely going to lead to you doing work in the field. Most people don’t want to spend their whole lives doing something they hate, so it doesn’t make a lot of sense to choose a major in a subject that you don’t enjoy at all.

  • What job and career opportunities will the major open up for me?

While you don’t want to choose something you hate, choosing something you love can be dangerous if it is a field of study that isn’t likely to lead to marketable employment skills. For example, if you choose a theater major, what are you going to do with it? Are you going to teach, or put it to use in public speaking and presentations in the business world or are you going to try to make a go of it in professional theater, understanding how difficult and competitive that field is? While you can choose a major in something that isn’t easy to find a job in, if you do so, remember that you may be creating a situation where you have to struggle to find a career. If you take on student loan debt to get such a degree, that can be especially problematic.

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